Have you ever been a pain in the ask for the people in your company? You’d be completely surprised to know that out of 200 guys in your team, only fifteen will say yes to the unique favor you would be asking them, especially if that favor will stretch your revenue both on the bottom line and the top line. With the respect and trust of these fifteen people, you already have free business growth. Imagine what results this Ask Challenge can yield if it becomes a practice for managers and employees every year.
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Getting What You Want By Being A Pain In The Ask
This is the podcast where I’ve said over 100 times I live life listening to things. As I clearly see someone saying something, whether it’s myself or somebody else that made an impact in somebody else, I write it down and make sure to podcast on that. If it helps one person, there is a great statistical chance it will help somebody. This podcast is heard now in 24 countries, so it probably will help somebody. Each of my next three podcasts are a result of either myself saying something and somebody said, “Can I write that down?” or hearing somebody else mention something and somebody physically saying, “I want to write that down.” I’m doing a little three-part series, definitely some killer growth nuggets coming at you. This episode is titled, Be a Pain in the Ask. I call this the Fifteen Ask Challenge. If you knock on the door, will it open? The cliché says, it will. If you ask, shall ye receive? The cliché and the biblical passage say that to be so. These are evergreen clichés. They’re even biblical in some cases. These are from what I can tell, laws, not theory. In 25 years in business, I stand by both of these. If you knock, the door will open. If you build it, they will come. If you ask, you shall receive. These are laws, not theory.
Here’s the assignment. On an annual basis, create fifteen asks that propel your company forward. They may even be a little bit uncomfortable to ask, but the key to this exercise, you have to do these asks in a three-day period of time and you’ll figure this out when you try this exercise. I’ll give you some examples. What if you have a number of vendors in your company? My company has 228 different vendors that supply us something. What if you were to call all vendors and ask for a 1% cost reduction for the next nine months giving nothing in return? You just call them up and say, “We’ve done some math. We have to somehow someway shave 1.2%. The only way we can figure this out is to call all the vendors. It’s not optional because if we can’t get everybody to agree, we’re going to have to drop one.” Give that one a shot.
What if you called an event and you asked if you could sponsor an event or maybe sponsor the lunch of an event. Maybe it’s a 40-person event and you’ll be willing to pay for everybody’s lunch in exchange for a five or ten-minute ability to speak from their stage. I will bet you, it would be very difficult for you to make that call and not get a, “You’ve got it,” answer. What if you called a retired person and you ask them to be on your one-man board of advisors with no compensation? I have a previous podcast on that one. I’m not going to go into depth on that. What if you call a marketing company and you ask them to barter services in a direct exchange for some of your services? If you’re not an exact match, before you call the marketing company, have another company in mind that you could do a three-way barter with where maybe the marketing company gets a service of this other person, you get the marketing company service, etc.
What if you ask your sales team who normally works Monday through Friday, if they’ll do a weekend sales blitz once a month? I’ve done that one numbers of times, I’ve never been turned down. What if you ask 100 customers to review your stuff? What if you ask your spouse if they’ll help you with your project in a ten-hour capacity over the next two weeks? That one leads to a lot of fun stuff. Competitor, what if you call a competitor and ask them to share insights and if you turn your nose up to that one, I can guarantee you’ve never made that call? What if you call suppliers and ask them if they would give you 3% free product if you increase your orders by 20% and commit to a year? You get the idea that I’ve already tried most of these. These are absolutely great.
Come up with fifteen completely unique asks that would stretch your company, add immediate revenue to your bottom line and top line. Either provide you savings of money or time or whatever, but no question, it would move your company forward. You’re going to get five to all fifteen to say, “Okay.” A lot of people are going to respect that you called. A lot of people are even going to wonder if you were a wounded avoider because you haven’t been calling these people lately for whatever reason. You’re going to get a lot of great conversations, you’re going to expand a lot of relationships, people are going to be like, “How things are going?” “You’ve got to do this.”
If only five said yes, you just got free business, free growth, you lowered your expenses for free and what did it teach you? It teaches you the power of asking for what you want. This is an annual exercise. For those of you that tried this, I would urge you to email me after the exercise, Ken@IncomeStore.com. You know I read them. A lot of these last 25 to 30 podcasts were direct responses from people emailing me to see if I would cover a certain topic. Please give me your responses because this one’s a big one. It works every time. These will grow your company and then if you do this annually as your company grows, your asks grow significantly as well and this exercise will stay fun. I strongly recommend you teach this to your managers, your employees and have this be a company-wide exercise. Episode 338, Become a Pain in the Ask. See you.