“What is the absolute most you can pay today?”

“What is the absolute most you can pay today?”.

If there was an Olympics for debt collection, this statement would win the gold. Please folks- go and grab a pen, your tablet, iPad, your child’s crayon, an aerosol can, a paint brunch- whatever you can. And write this down.

I have been in Melbourne this week teaching small business owners how to get paid, and I must have repeated this statement well over 100 times. That is how effective it is. So many people think in absolutes- full amount or zero. But something is ALWAYS better than nothing- all you have to do is ask. Here is an example- I was training a company yesterday morning and one of their debtors replied to their reminder email whilst I was there, saying “I am sorry I just don’t have it at the moment but I will try and fix it up next week”. The amount owing was $5732. I asked the accounts girl I was with how she would respond and she said she would just wait until next week like he wanted. I told her about my 9 magic words and told her to watch this as I dialled the customer on my phone. “What is the absolute most you can pay today?” I asked. “How about $2732 now and the remaining $3000 next week”, he offered. Obviously I accepted and he sent a receipt for the $2732 within a minute. The accounts girl seemed stunned at how easy it was. Just like that we had reduced their overall risk by half, the debtor was now jointly invested in the debt being repaid, the company now had this money in available cashflow, plus the customer now knows he can’t just pick and choose when he pays. This was all achieved with one 30 second phone call.

Guys, your debtors will always be able to pay something that day. You just need to ask them how much and insist they do so you can “ensure no enforcement action is taken”. Do this in every conversation you have with a debtor, and watch the money roll in.

Oh and for everyone I met on Tuesday at my North Melbourne BE Paid training session- it was so wonderful to meet you all and I hope you enjoyed our session as much as I did.


“What is the absolute most you can pay today?”

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