Hi, welcome to the blog.
As I’m writing this, the first full working week of 2020 for most of us is just ending. How was it for you? Were you able to get back into the swing of things quickly, or did the festive break made it difficult for you to regain your “mojo” and hit the ground running?
I’m lucky enough to thoroughly enjoy the work I do and so I always find breaks and holidays restore my energy levels and let me get a flying start back. This first week back has been spent with the guys at Inspired Schools, CIS, Finsa and also completing work for a new client I closed on Christmas Eve. More to follow on that deal, how I won it and what it shows in a future Saturday Sales email! All I will say is that great content will help you sell and will win you business!
It has been a busy start for me but I do know that some people take a while to get back up to speed after time off. In some lines of work, that’s not going to have a major impact, but in sales, it could be critical if your competitors have started contacting your prospects before you have, or if you don’t follow up on meetings you had at the end of last year straight away.
DISCIPLINE OF LOVE
One thing that really helps is building routine, habit and discipline into what you do. It’s much easier to get back into the groove if that groove is deep, well-worn and very familiar.
Last week I spoke to you about targets and aims for 2020. But let’s be frank: a vision without execution is a hallucination. Here are 4 key sales disciplines to put in place in your week not only to help you achieve your goals and ensure you are happy come December 31st 2020, but also to help you get back in the saddle quickly after holidays, periods off sick, or whatever else takes you away from work for a while.
Create a Monthly and Weekly Plan
Targets and goals don’t happen on their own. You need to build a plan for how you will achieve what you want. Start by taking your year’s target and breaking it down into a monthly plan. Then divide this further by the number of weeks in each month.
Here’s a real-world example for you.
Last week I shared with you how I want to achieve 52 new Sales Videos for my YouTube channel. I certainly want to make content that is meaningful for my prospects and not just thumb-suck my content, week by week. So, where to begin?
52 Key Issues that My Prospects Have – I spent some time writing down the issues my prospects have, and now I’ll focus on creating content to help them solve these!
Are your sales issues on this list? If they aren’t, I’d love to hear about it! What other challenges do you have that I can help you with?
Once you’ve outlined your plan, define exactly what actions need to take place to turn it into a reality: researching prospects, making calls, creating documents, whatever. Whether standalone activities or combinations, you need to then reserve time in your diary. Which brings us neatly to the second discipline.
Put aside some “unless the world is ending” time
When you’ve got a plan to achieve something that’s only half the battle. You must then be disciplined and actually dedicate the time to do things that will achieve the plan’s aims.
So, look at your plan and identify how long each activity is likely to take. Be realistic, not optimistic. Put that time in your diary. In ink, not pencil!
I recommend 1-hour slots to get things done as the vast majority of us can’t focus sharply for longer than this. If your task needs to take more than an hour, set 2 or 3 slots in the day.
Make sure that others (colleagues, friends, family) know that this time is sacrosanct, and must be respected “unless the world is ending”!
However, don’t be negative about this. Explain to others why it’s important, and what the positive impact will be – they are more likely to support you with this if they know not only what you are doing, but why.
Reward Discipline and Achievement
When you put time aside to achieve things, it’s good to use mini targets as additional motivation for you throughout the week.
Let’s say you want to put aside 10 dedicated hours every week which will help you achieve your goals. If you achieve what you wanted to when the 10 hours are complete, reward yourself! Perhaps it’s a night out, or buying something you want but don’t need. You know what will be a suitable “treat” for you.
Not only does this help us with motivation and a boost to self-esteem, but it also gets us into the mindset of “no work, no rewards”.
Be in control of your basic sales numbers
It’s vital that you get in complete control of your personal sales situation and what you are doing to achieve your targets.
Once you’ve set yourself a target and know how you will achieve it weekly monitoring of the key numbers is vital.
There are plenty of ways of doing this, but working backwards is the most powerful. For example, if you have a target of £48,000 of revenue this year then my schoolboy maths tells me you are going to need to be doing £4k per month on average.
Where are you against this number for January so far? How many leads are you likely to need to convert into sales to get there? And so how many prospects should you qualify? And finally, how many calls do you need to make to end up with that many prospects?
Stay in close contact with your numbers and you’ll be more in control of whether or not you hit the goals you wanted by the end of the year.
What are some of your top tips on sales discipline? How do you motivate and reward yourself for getting the “drudge work” done? Do you feel you need help and support with self-motivation, target setting or monitoring?
As always, please feel free to get in touch and let me know about your experiences or to see if I can help you. You can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or you can connect with me through social media – YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook, just search for “jameswhitesales”. I’m always happy to hear from readers about what other subjects you’d like me to cover that would help you with your own sales practice or developing your business.
I hope you have a great weekend ahead, and you’re motivated to hit the ground running again next Monday morning!