Wanna Go Fishing?
Today my son Ryan was invited by one of his neighborhood buddies to go fishing. Garrett and his father were headed up to one of the new ponds in our city to do some fishing and thought Ryan might enjoy joining them. He raced home with excitement to ask permission and I told him to "have fun and be polite." (Isn't that good advice, no matter who it's being given to?)
A few hours later, Ryan burst into the house to announce that he had caught 13 fish. Yep, with no skill or previous "market knowledge," Ryan was able to catch something just by "showing up." He told me all about how he learned to cast the line and bait the hook and just kept casting and reeling and casting and reeling until he got a bite.
They were using hot dogs for bait and it was obviously working well because Garrett was hot too, catching 12 fish - probably many of the ones that Ryan had just thrown back. The key thing to realize is that regardless of how many lines were in the water, fish were biting. There were other people fishing around the same pond who were catching fish too but that didn't stop Ryan and Garrett from tossing in their lines.
Is It Time to Grab Your Pole?
How will you start out this week?
Will you need to wait for someone to invite you to start fishing?
Will you get up early and get your tackle box ready?
Are you going to check the weather forecast and make sure everything looks perfect or will you just grab a cap, toss a jacket in the back seat and head out to the pond, knowing that the fish aren't going to care about the weather - when they are ready to eat, everything looks like a worm...or a hot dog.
Will you show up at the pond and complain that there's already some people fishing and moan that there probably won't be any fish biting today?
And please don't tell me your plan is to expect the fish to just jump out of the lake, drive themselves to your office and flop up on your desk.
Baiting the Hook
Garrett and Ryan used hot dogs to get the fish to bite. What will you use?
Market knowledge? Well rehearsed dialogues that are delivered with confidence and competence? A varying mix of contact methods such as email, phone calls, hand written notes, in person meetings and social networking sites?
Quit worrying about the bait and get your line in the water.
The following section is specifically aimed at anyone in a leadership position such as a manager or broker
Who Deserves Your Angler Award This Week?
Right before we ate dinner, Garrett's mom came down to give Ryan something. You see, Garrett's dad knew this was Ryan's first time fishing where he had actually caught something and he wanted to recognize him for his efforts. They had created a certificate naming Ryan with the "1st Place Angler Award" for catching the most fish. As you can see from the photo, Ryan is quite proud of his accomplishment.
So how are you recognizing and rewarding your "fishermen" and "fisherwomen" who are out there casting their lines each day? Are you providing good "bait" with your training, technology and tools? Are you helping them learn how to be aggressive when the fish are biting yet patient when they're not?
I don't know about you but it just might be a great time for a fishing contest in your office. Get some excitement "on the line" and plan a night out at the end of the event when everyone can gather and tell some great "fish stories" about the one's they snagged and of course the ones that got away.
As the old saying goes - "Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, feed him for a lifetime."
Now who's ready to play some hooky from work and sneak out to the ol' water hole?