Apply these time management strategies to sales experts to improve performance! Keep reading to find out more.
RELATED: Forbes.com – Time Management Best Practices
In this article:
- Which contributes to poor time management
- Effective tips for managing your time
- Make the technology work with you, not against you
- Get organized and use templates
- Prospecting with a purpose
- Scheduling of daily sales activities
- Do not micromanage
- Stop focusing on small tasks
Effective time management strategies for sellers
Which contributes to poor time management
Time management is one of the most important skills of sales professionals. However, recent research shows that very few representatives use a time management method (22%).
If you are part of the remaining 78% and you are reading this in your news feed, after 15 minutes of blind scrolling – do not feel bad at ease, we understood. The Internet forces us all to lose sight of our goal and working effectively is harder than ever.
Thanks to mobile phones, we now have all the wonders of the Internet – friends, family, social media – in our pockets. And it's hard to resist this scrolling habit.
If you do not believe me, take a look at this cute kitten!
Being distracted by social media and the Internet can lead to procrastination. Schedules will eventually be delayed, priorities will be scrambled, and this will eventually lead to major mistakes.
You can forget calendars with customers or miss important updates or emails, or even lose a chance to make a deal. You and your prospect will lose time.
Effective tips for managing your time
I am certainly not an expert in time management (did I show you the picture of a kitten?). So I asked six sales experts what their most effective time management strategies were, what the worst wasted and what tools they used. use to increase productivity and sales efficiency.
Time management is not just about checking the list of tasks to perform on your personal or personal board. If you do not use tools or have not properly configured your time, you will not get the results you need to achieve your long-term goals.
Here is what I learned.
1. Make the technology work with you, not against you
There is currently a huge debate in the public space about whether technology is good for us or not. Some claim it makes us lazy, but there is plenty of evidence of significant productivity growth in business.
Surprisingly, some of the advice offered today by sales experts is to disable your email so that it is more productive. Email has been identified as one of the biggest time wasters, says Teri Robb, Regional Vice President, Sales for Central US at Check Point.
Many vendors live and die from their email and end up being distracted by the email at the top of their inbox (instead of doing what's important and necessary). It may sound strange, but close your inbox a few hours a day to get your sales job done, "said Teri.
He added, "This will help you focus and prioritize. Many of these emergencies will have settled. "
Technology must work with you to make your work more efficient. To do this, it automates administrative tasks and repetitive tasks. According to a study by InsideSales.com, salespeople spend a disproportionate amount of time on administrative tasks – 12.8% of their time.
"On sale, it is important to eliminate and automate monotonous and administrative tasks. We use tools such as Salesforce, Drift, Join.Me, ContactMonkey email templates, email tracking and direct mail, Asana, Trello, Slack and DocuSign, "says Mark Gray, ContactMonkey Sales Manager.
2. Get organized and use templates
According to some accounts, a messy desk may be a sign of genius. However, if sales are not organized, you may lose precious time with your prospects.
Improve your time management skills by using templates for your work, whether emails, texts or progress tracking.
Email templates help salespeople save valuable time if customers often ask questions about products.
"I found that email could be a considerable waste of time for sales professionals. We use a few protocols to streamline emails from our sales teams, "said Ian McClarty, CEO of PhoenixNap.com.
He added, "We use predefined answers and we configure e-mails in areas for more efficiency."
"We provide each new member of our sales team with pre-formatted pre-formatted responses as part of our sales funnel. Up to 40% of emails can be answered with a predefined answer, some requiring only a small custom modification, "added Ian.
"Some answers take only two clicks, which saves valuable time."
RELATED: Essential Tools and Tips for Time Management in Sales
3. Prospecting with a purpose
Spending too much time looking for a potential customer is one of the biggest mistakes made by sales representatives. If your research prior to the call lasts more than a few minutes, you are mistaken.
You spend far too much time between calls. You could have used the time spent on other activities to improve your business performance.
The Time Management for Sales study shows that sales professionals spend 12% of their time researching target accounts and prospects.
The research, as well as the administrative tasks, were the most time-consuming activities of the representatives. It's just another way to dither before the cold call, say sales managers.
"Vendors always tend to find everything except perspective," said Grayson Lafrenz, CEO and Business Development Manager for Digital Energy Marketing.
He added, "Why that? Because you are rejected all the time when you are prospecting. Some of the biggest time wasters respond to emails and spend too much time researching when the person you're researching may not even be a qualified prospect. "
He further reminded sales professionals: "The paralysis of the analysis is one of the main causes of mortality of a seller,
4. Planning daily sales activities
To ensure that salespeople spend their valuable time on what matters, you can plan daily sales activities and set clear expectations for them. Sales pace tools are a good way to automate sales activities and workflow for this purpose.
What is the sales pace? This is the follow-up of the progress of the team during meetings.
"I live and die according to what the calendar tells me to do. This allows me to look back, see where I have spent my time and improve it, "said Ryan Stewman of HardcoreCloser.com.
And if you think you need complex planning for task planning, this is not the case. Sometimes a piece of paper and a pen work just as well as a project management software.
"Tools for time management? Sheet of paper and checklist: It may seem old fashioned, but it's the best time management tool I've implemented in the past three years, "said Adam Becker, Senior Account Manager at Octiv.
You can also use a whiteboard so that all members of your team see what should be the priorities for a given week or month. This way everyone is aware of your team's goals.
5. Do not micromanage
What is micromanagement? This means that a person occupying a senior position controls every aspect and the activities of a group or an organization.
Finally, there is something to be said about a team requiring ongoing supervision over the management of their time. If you can not trust your team to manage their time effectively, consider that your entire sales process is a problem or that your sales tools may not be effective.
Micromanaging your employees will only create frustration for you and your entire team. Your team may end up with low moral values if you do not allow them to manage their time and processes independently.
"Give your staff the confidence they need to manage their productivity. In the end, it will pay off with motivation and commitment, "said James Lloyd-Townshend, CEO of Frank Recruitment Group.
"Trust is one of the most valuable gifts you can offer to your staff," he added.
6. Stop focusing on small tasks
When you start your work day, you may have learned to do the most important tasks first. But some people like to start by ticking off the unimportant things on their list.
After a long day of work on these small tasks, they begin to think that they have been productive. This is another way of procrastinating and avoiding doing the most important tasks.
David Allen, the author of Do things, believe it is important to use your mind for useful activities instead of getting bogged down with small two-minute tasks.
If something happens that only takes a minute or two to do, do it right away. You do not have to program it for the next day.
Your mind will then be free to focus on more important tasks, such as preparing a sales pitch for your next client.
If time is money, wasted time will mean a loss of funds for your business. As a sales professional, not managing your time properly can be a disaster not only for your personal goals, but also for your team's deadlines.
Prioritize tasks, do not be distracted by social media or other time-consuming activities and stay focused on the most important tasks.
Good time management will help sales reps be more productive and bring them closer to their personal sales goals.
Want to know more about how representatives spend their time? Download the InsideSales.com search – "Time Management for Sales".
Do you have trouble managing your time? What are some of the factors that contribute to this? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.
Editor's Note: This position was published on January 24, 2018 and has been updated to improve its quality and relevance.