In addition to having a vision of success, dedication and desire, it’s critical that we have a system that supports the level of achievement we are targeting. Whatever your role as a sales professional, organizing your time ‘to fish when the fish are biting’ and to use the slower times for planning and other dollar producing activities is key.
I use Outlook because I have it, other people have it, and it’s easy to use. As a sales person I am structured to “Sell it or Schedule it” and Outlook allows me to organize my appointments to prospect, propose and to close and to schedule all the accompanying marketing activities to line up those selling actions. See if the checklist below will help you to organize your time to produce greater sales results.
- Pick a one hour block of time BEFORE your week begins to organize your schedule for the upcoming week. When you use Outlook regularly, you will be moving actions forward that didn’t happen the previous week, so your upcoming week will start to fill. Either make this time SACRED to do your scheduling or make it a DEADLINE by when your schedule will be complete. Mine is Sunday at 7-8 pm and I have it as a deadline. In the appointment on my calendar I have the question “What am I committed to accomplishing this week?” and schedule my activities according to the answers to that question.
- Once scheduled, make it a recurring activity with no end date in site. And color code it as a ‘planning’ activity.
- Look into your week for the best time to do certain blocks of activities: thank you notes, marketing letters, coaching activities, prospecting calls, follow up on proposal calls, etc. Schedule them at the time during the week when you are BEST ABLE to accomplish the objective of that activity, and when you have the lowest traffic time in the showroom. Make it a recurring activity. You can color code these as ‘sales and marketing’.
- Once you get a month under your belt using this, you can move your activities to another time that works better.
- For scheduling appointments, ask your client what time of day is best to talk/meet again. Based on their answer, say “I have 10 on Wednesday or 11 on Thursday. Which is better for you?”
- Put that time in your calendar. Ask them “Do you use Outlook?” and if they say yes, ask them “May I send you an invitation to this appointment? That way all you have to do is accept it and it will go right into YOUR calendar.”
- They will LOVE that….trust me. : )
You can use the Outlook invitation with so many people in your life for so many actions. And the more you do that, the less time you will spend scheduling your time, as you are always scheduling into the future. Good luck and let me know how it works for you!