Is this something you have heard? I wish I had a dollar for every time I heard that phrase. Most salespeople hate to hear this comment. For me, I do believe that there is a path or direction for all of us. However, I do not believe this phrase is a free pass to take decisions or choices lightly. I believe we must take action and not believe that if it's meant to be, the opportunity will keep falling in our lap and become so obvious. When opportunity knocks, we must seize it or at least realize that we chose not to. To some degree, we control our destiny by the choices we make.
As a salesperson, you may hear this phrase more often from faith based individuals. I would share this story with them and know that it came right from the pulpit.
A minister was speaking one Sunday about a gentleman in an area that was flooding. The news reports stated that everyone should evacuate the area. The police came through as the streets began to take on water. They used a loud speaker to let everyone know they were clearing the neighborhood. As neighbors were leaving, one lady asked the man, "Are you not leaving?" He responded, "I believe the good Lord will take care of me." The streets flooded and only fire engines and trucks could get through. As the fireman approached the man on his porch, the fireman called out, "come to the fire engine! The flooding will only get worse!" The man responded the same way as before, "I believe the good Lord will take care of me." Now the water was up to the man's door. A rescue boat was going around saving pets and to clear debris. They saw the man had moved upstairs, and he was looking out his window. The rescue man in the boat shouted out, "Come out now, we can save you!" The man replied as usual, "I am staying. The good Lord will take care of me." The man was now on his roof, and individuals in the media had learned of this. A helicopter flew over and hovered above the man. A man with a loud speaker yelled down, "We will drop a ladder! Climb up and we will get you to a dry place!" He waved back and said, "I'm fine. The good Lord will take care of me." The house collapses, and the man dies from drowning. When he gets to Heaven, he asks God, "Why did you forsake me? I trusted you. I believed you would save me!" God responded, "I sent you a neighbor, a policeman, a fireman, a rescue worker in a boat, and a helicopter. What more could I do?"
Of course, this is nothing more than a story. The pastor's point was that we must take advantage of life's opportunities. We must do our part. We must take responsibility for our actions and not blame the world for what happens to us. He went on to say that God brings opportunities to you daily to serve, and you must respond.
Regardless of how you view religion, the story does ring true that we must look for those opportunities and seize them. Our clients cannot sit on the sidelines and trust that when they miss an opportunity, that this was their fate. I believe more and more often that it's an easy way out of making a decision, or it's a way to justify not taking action. We do not want to be procrastinators, indecisive or weak. It's much easier to take and idealistic approach such as "if it's meant to be" to make us feel better, that somehow, we don't take responsibility for the outcome. Like Scarlett O'Hara, we can worry about that tomorrow.
If you do not believe me, consider this situation: you are standing at the top of a twenty story building . Would you say to yourself, "If I jump of, and if I die, I was meant to die." Of course not, should be your response. Then why would we take decisions and throw them into the air believing the right outcome will happen?
It's our role to make sure the client realizes that this is their moment, and the decision is theirs to make. The decision to not act is a decision. That is okay, but they must realize that they have made such a decision and are responsible for the ultimate outcome.