About Dave

Dave Kurlan's Blog has earned a medal for the Top Sales & Marketing Blog award three years running and this year this article earned Gold. Read more about Dave.

Subscribe to the Blog

Your email:

Subscribe on Kindle 
Email me  


 Top 30 on Kindle
Top 100 on Amazon 

Top Sales World - Summer Reading 2014

Inbound 2014


Scroll for Awards

2013 Bronze Medal Top Sales & Marketing Blog2013 Gold Medal Top Sales & Marketing Article2013 Finalist Medal Top Sales & Marketing Thought Leader2013 Gold Medal Top Sales & Marketing Assessment Tool

Scroll for Free Tools

Sales Process Grader

Sales Candidate Assessment Free Trial

Sales Ghost Calculator

Sales Force Grader

Sales Hiring Mistake Calculator


FREE Recruiting Process Grader

Other Great Sites

top sales world  Evan Elite Promotion New  alltop

Current Articles | RSS Feed RSS Feed

Boston Ballet and Money Tolerance - What it Means to Your Sales Force


Dave Kurlan is a top-rated keynote speaker, best-selling author, sales thought leader and expert on all things sales and selling.

sales force evaluation,sales assessment,dave kurlan,money weaknessesLast week I received a call from the Boston Ballet - part of their annual fundraising drive.  I hate these calls as much as you do, but the lady who called, engaged me by asking if I was looking forward to this year's new production of The Nutcracker Ballet.  

When she got to the part when she was asking for money, she screwed up (at least with me).  She only asked for a $35 donation.

If she had asked for $1000 or $5000, it would have been too much for most people to part with over the phone.  But $35 wasn't worth the time which I would have to spend giving her my credit card information.  I said "no" to $35, but asked myself, 'To what amount would I have said "yes"?'

It turns out that a "yes" would have been a no-brainer for any request between $100 and $250 and she could have pushed me to say "yes" to any amount between $250-$500, but $35 just wasn't worth my time.

So, what is the lesson here?

It's two-fold.  Everybody has a comfort zone with money - businesses, non-profits, salespeople, clients, customers, donors and prospects.  The key is to be aware of it and manage it.

If you have salespeople asking for more than is comfortable for them, you need to replace your salespeople.

If you have salespeople asking for amounts that are comfortable for them, but uncomfortable for your prospects, you need to question your target audience and do a better job training your salespeople to sell value.

If the discomfort with money stretches to both salespeople and prospects, you won't be able to sell anything!

And if both sides are comfortable with the amounts being asked, money won't ever be a problem.

The money issue is a bigger problem than most people realize.  Get it right and selling gets much easier!  Do you need a way to figure out whether your sales force can handle the money which you need them to get?  A Sales Force Evaluation will accomplish that.

© Copyright  Dave Kurlan All Rights Reserved

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Mon, Nov 19, 2012 @ 07:43 AM


Dave, Two weeks ago I experienced nothing short of a miracle at a fund-raising banquet for Good Works, a faith-based home repair ministry http://www.goodworksinc.org/, where your point was confirmed in the opposite manner. The MC told a story early in the evening during which he said God had "placed upon his heart that he should ask someone to donate $50,000 that night". Since the event goal was $115,000 (their average the past three years), it was obvious his 'ask' was way outside his comfort zone and that of the organization. Needless to say, a couple approached him before the night was over and donated $50K, bringing the total that evening to $183,000! (The really cool part is ten additional families will have their homes repaired to modern standards of comfort as a result.) All this happened because the MC went outside his money "comfort zone" and asked.

posted on Monday, November 19, 2012 at 8:30 AM by Mike Shannon

Why didn't you donate the higher amount you felt was worthy without being prompted? I'm sure the BB would have accepted your offer no? 
Your reasoning for not donating seems faulty and a stretch for the sake of making a point.

posted on Monday, November 19, 2012 at 1:35 PM by Ken

Where did I say I didn't donate? 
And I apologize for not being clear, which may have caused you to totally miss the point of the article.

posted on Monday, November 19, 2012 at 3:49 PM by Dave Kurlan

"I said "no" to $35, but asked myself, 'To what amount would I have said "yes"?' 
It turns out that a "yes" would have been a no-brainer for any request between $100 and $250 and she could have pushed me to say "yes" to any amount between $250-$500, but $35 just wasn't worth my time". 
Your words are where I inferred your non donation. You are correct not very clear at all. 
Your intro was a clumsy hand off to your point which I did get thank you. Your post is almost formed as a non sequitur so it reads as a ham handed effort to pitch a sales force evaluation.

posted on Monday, November 19, 2012 at 4:17 PM by Ken

Yeah - happens all the time. I'm a sales expert first and a writer, well, not a writer. Just someone who happens to write. For me writing provides an opportunity to share ideas, best practices, case histories and in this case, examples. My Blog certainly doesn't win awards for my writing skills, so it must win for my substance and content. I'm sure my regular readers get that by now.

posted on Monday, November 19, 2012 at 4:37 PM by Dave Kurlan

I'm sure that as a sales trainer and sharer of best practices you encourage others to put their best foot forward , accept constructive criticism, and not to rely on past awards as a crutch for today's project. That is a good lesson at all times for everyone.

posted on Monday, November 19, 2012 at 4:59 PM by Ken

Thanks for the lessons Ken.

posted on Monday, November 19, 2012 at 8:41 PM by Dave Kurlan

Post Comment
Website (optional)

Allowed tags: <a> link, <b> bold, <i> italics