We're at the start of a brand new year! Were two of your New Year's resolutions to get better organized and to spend your time more wisely? Most of us get so involved with daily activities that we soon forget those good intentions.
We've all said, " I just never have enough time." For those of us in the sales profession, time is the stuff success is made of. How we spend it determines our level of success or failure. Today, let's examine our time management skills.
Exactly what is your time worth? Many professions, such as accountants or lawyers, charge by the hour. They plan their days to maximize their billable hours. Although we as sales people do not charge by the hour, we definitely should know what each hour of our time is worth. To calculate, take your earnings for 2017. If you work 40 hours per week, 50 weeks of the year (allow for how many weeks of vacation you have...if you are working in Europe, you will have more than two weeks of vacation), you will have around 2000 hours of billable time. Divide your earnings by your number of hours worked. What is each hour of your day worth? Are you surprised? We must not waste our hours!
Sales success comes to those who understand and execute the sales process well. Every day, it is important to put new clients into your sales pipeline. The activities of prospecting, setting appointments for pain-finding calls, presenting solutions, and service work done after the sale are all vital to your success as a sales person. Each day, you should spend some of your "billable hours" in each of the above categories. This allows you to grow your business and insures a steady stream of new clients coming on board to replace old clients lost. Here's how a typical workday should look:
1. New prospect
2. New prospect
3. New prospect
4. New prospect
5. New prospect
These calls are to set appointments with new prospects. You should do at least 5 of these per day, more if you are a new salesperson and are actively growing your list. For new sales people, 15 new calls a day is a good number.
Pain Finding Calls
1. Pain-Finding calls
2. Pain-Finding calls
3. Pain-Finding calls
4. Pain-Finding calls
The objective of these calls is to find out what the client needs and what those needs mean to his business and to him personally.
1. Presentation calls
2. Presentation calls
The objective of these calls is to present solutions to your client's needs and pains. Here's where you ask for money!
You should be following up with clients, checking their results, writing thank-you notes, returning emails and phone calls.
1. Paper work
2. Paper work
3. Paper work
4. Paper work
Now is the time to write orders, do copy, plan your next day. This should be done before 9 AM and after 4 PM.
For those small emergencies when a client demands to see you right now, you can allow part of one day each week for such activities. Most of the time, when a client calls and needs to see you immediately, making an appointment within a few days will work just as well. That way, you, not your clients, control your calendar.
It is important, before you leave each night, to have the next day planned and ready to go. Many of my top performers come to work on Monday with their entire week planned! Your day is no longer an "accident". You have a plan for increasing your income. The difference between the mediocre performer and the top performer is often the way they choose to spend their time. Make your resolution for 2018 to spend your "billable hours" productively.