When a prospective client still won’t commit… 


Usually, prospective clients let you know they’re ready to hire you or tell you why they aren’t. But sometimes, they can’t decide what to do. You can help them by getting them to focus on what’s at stake.

The simplest way to do that is to (a) summarize what they told you they need or want, (b) what you told them about your solutions and benefits, and (c) the risks of waiting or doing nothing. Follow this with something like, “This (your services) seems to be your best option right now. What do you think?”

When they aren’t ready to say yes, you want them to tell you what they’re thinking (questions, objections, fears) so you can respond and try again.

If you have done that but they are still dragging their feet, ask, “Are you just in the information gathering stage right now, or are you serious about (fixing this problem, starting a business, getting this taken care of, etc.?”)

If they’re “just looking” let them tell you that. Hearing themself say this might help them realize they might not get what they want and tell you to get started.  

If they’re serious about solving their problem but still won’t commit, get them to focus on what’s at stake by pointing out what you’re hearing. “It seems like you’re not sure what you want to do” or “It seems like you’re not ready to do this right now” and ask a question that reminds them what is a take:

  • “Are you okay with not taking care of this until next year?”
  • “Are you willing to accept the risk of X getting bigger/worse?”
  • “If you wait, it may cost you a lot more (because). Is that okay with you?”

If they want the benefits you offer, understand the risks of saying no or waiting, but still aren’t willing to commit, let them go. Tomorrow, they may think about what you’ve told them and the fact that you didn’t push them, their fear of loss may kick in and they’ll call you back. 

And if they don’t, you can spend your time talking to prospective clients who are ready to go.