The Spaghetti Theory is a sure-fire way to increase your sales in any given week, month, quarter or year!
Try this at home: hold a huge strainer of cooked pasta over the sink and shake the strainer back and forth to get all of the water out. Do you notice that along with the water, some noodles also slip through the holes of the strainer? Not a lot of noodles, just a few.
Imagine taking every business card that’s on your desk and putting it into the same strainer and shaking it. If they could fit, some of those business cards would actually fall through the holes, just like those few strands of spaghetti did.
Those that fall through the holes are your customers and the rest, we’ll talk about in our next blog post called “Cherries, Greenies, Pits and Tamales.”
The Spaghetti Theory
The spaghetti theory is funny in that if you have just a few strands of pasta in your strainer, none of it will fall through. But if you have a lot of pasta into the strainer you’ll start to see noodles falling through the holes.
And so it is with sales. Almost every sales person has beginner’s luck making a first sale right out of the gate or with just a few pieces of pasta in the strainer. After that, the game becomes harder and you have to keep adding pasta on a regular basis and and keep shaking that strainer (following up). The more pasta you add, the more noodles will fall out!
If you want a big bowl of pasta made up of all the noodles that have fallen through the strainer, then you need to put a lot, and I mean a lot of pasta into the strainer. Even the worst salesperson on the planet will make money at the game of sales if he or she puts enough pasta into their strainer!
The Spaghetti Theory is a unique way of explaining, “its a numbers game”.
And the Spaghetti theory states that unless you’re overwhelmed and drowning in leads, (er… pasta) you’re not doing enough prospecting! After you’ve been at the game of sales a while you will know exactly how many prospects have to go into your strainer in order to “shake lose” the paying clients.
When you’re new, you come to the game with no statistics. You don’t know how many people you have to talk to in order to get a meeting and then how many meetings you have to take in order to close a sale. Or, maybe you’re seasoned but have never tracked your statistics.
The Spaghetti Theory encourages you to stop comparing yourself to other salespeople and start keeping track of your own statistics.
Every day keep track of:
# new people met (new noodles into the strainer)
# of prospecting meetings (can just be a getting to you know meeting or actual prospecting meeting) (shaking strainer)
# of follow up e-mails, hand-written note cards or phone calls made (shaking strainer)
# of actual sales meetings (shaking strainer)
The last thing to track is your # of new accounts or closed sales or new clients and you only track this as a means to measure all the behaviors you did that lead up to each closed sale.
After you track behaviors for a few months, you will be able to know how many noodles you need to put into your strainer each day that will results in prospecting meetings, which result in sales meeting, which result in a sale. Once you know these numbers, you are un-stoppable and your income is endless.
According to the Spaghetti Theory, the worst salesperson on the planet can beat out the best salesperson on the planet in a sales competition as long as he or she knows their statistics. Yep, they will have to work harder and have higher numbers than the best salesperson, but its all about the statistics. And, when you know your statistics, you can begin to improve each one by learning new strategies to better your prospecting, meeting and sales skills.
Successful salespeople and sales managers track behaviors NOT sales. If you’re doing enough of the right behaviors, you’ll put enough pasta into your strainer (get in front of enough people) and convert those people into prospects and then convert those prospects into customers!
Get on board with the Spaghetti Theory and become a pasta lover!
Put lots and lots of pasta into your strainer every day. Set a number of how many new noodles have to go into your strainer and then don’t forget to shake your strainer. (Shaking the strainer is an analogy for following up and we’ll talk about that in an upcoming blog post called F/U).