Are you a planner? Do you set goals for each day? Or are you one to just “wing it”? To be the best you need to manage your day in sales.
Are You Just Average?
Is this you? Hop in your car. Stop at the end of the driveway. Wonder whether to turn left to the first prospect of the day. Right to go to the office to make phone calls. Or head to the local coffee shop to check out the new barista. Most average sales people just “wing it” figuring something miraculous will happen today. Do you manage your day in sales like the best salespeople by having a plan for the day?
Goals Are The Key To Success
Read the published literature on success and the common theme there is goal setting. Some studies have shown that having written goals increase the likelihood of achieving them by 1000% over those who just “wing it.” Goals written in the present tense are most effective: “I earn six-figure annual commissions!” Setting goals is the first step to manage your day in sales.
Keep Your Goal Prominent
Written goals are best. Something magical happens when you see them everyday. Our daughter, Erin, ran track in high school. She is a fierce competitor. Erin knew the times she had to beat to win the state low-hurdle event at the state track meet in 1995. To keep that goal top of mind she wrote the time on her hand. Each day at practice she worked hard to achieve those times. With the goal prominently written on her hand she set a school record not bested until 2007. Like Erin, manage your day in sales by reading and recommitting to your goals every day.
Think, Plan, Act
Great salespeople have an over all goal driving them. Then they do each day the activities to meet that goal. By keeping the main goal top of mind, great salespeople plan each month, week and day with intention. They know that professional selling is a numbers game. Repeating the same activities with skill over and over again is how they win. Think about the needs of your customers and prospects. Plan how to convince them to fulfill those needs with your products or service. Act on the plan. When you manage your day in sales with attention to your plan, you will be a great salesperson.
The Value of Planning
I love this quote by General Eisenhower: “In planning for battle I have found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.”
Rarely in my experience has sales planning worked out exactly as designed. To manage your day in sales flexibility is very important. The plan has the desired outcome but the original path to get there is strewn with obstacles.
I had confirmed an appointment with a prospect. Driven 3 hours to meet with him. Only to find he was not in. He had spent the night in the hospital with his sick child. The meeting with me was the last thing on his mind. I left him a hand written note at his office wishing a speedy recovery for his child and a request to schedule another meeting. He called me in a few days with good news about his child and we scheduled a time to meet. The initial plan was delayed but by making the first trip I built a bit of good will as a consolation prize.
Make your daily plan but have a “plan B” as well.
What To Do Right Now
Being successful is a three-step process:
- Set your goal
- Determine what it takes to reach the goal
- Commit yourself without distraction to doing what it takes
Most of us do the first step and many do number 2. Where we fail is in the execution of number 3. Manage your day in sales with intention to commit yourself without distraction to achieving your goal.
Don Crawford & Lois Carter Crawford