Successful salespeople don't just happen overnight or get lucky with a big deal randomly. A lot of work needs to be invested into becoming a success with sales, it's not overnight. While personality and persistence do go a long way, there's also a lot of organization that goes into it. Salespeople at the top of their game not only understand the value of the time each of their prospects gives them to try to complete a sale but also understand their own time value. They know while working that every moment not working with leads is a moment devoid of the opportunity for sales.
That means that successful salespeople tend to be extremely organized because they need to be efficient with their time management.
Table of Contents
1. Be in the right mindset
The first thing is to always bring the right mindset into the day. This requires a mix of discipline and consistency in the day-to-day of a salesperson. Only with this consistency will their organization matter and work well. They wake up earlier to get ahead of the day, not feel rushed when beginning their sales routine, and know exactly where their time should be spent. The morning should be that peaceful time of reflection on what to focus on in the day and to prepare for any big calls, pitches, or meetings.
The end of the day should also finish just as strong and be a reflection of what went well throughout the day and what could use improvement. This consistent mental check-in and check-out system help keep salespeople grounded and focused on their days.
2. Build out the week in advance
Part of organization and consistency is knowing what the week ahead looks like. Don't go any further, as you don't want to overwhelm yourself with something so far in advance. You can dedicate your entire time here, between those administrative tasks done during non-peak hours, to those sales pieces of training you need to take care of periodically to stay fresh with the product offering.
Knowing how your week will look will give you a sense of the time you have for getting new leads and prospects while still maintaining your other duties and responsibilities. Each day needs to seem like the previous day, except for ad hoc training and team meetings.
When you handle your schedule and organization through modern calendars these days, especially when you use advanced features such as color coding and setting categories for meetings, it can help when you take the time monthly to do some quick analytics of your own on how you spend your time. For example, you can see if you're providing enough time for your sales-related responsibilities or if you find yourself with distracting meetings and other administrative obligations. You won't know until you start tracking this type of information.
3. Follow up with warm leads
The first task to handle is to work on following up with those warm leads. When you are at your best salesperson strength, nurture those leads and always focus on converting those warm leads. Stick to your target and ensure that every relevant warm lead is followed up as a priority for the day. The reason being is that these are the closest to being closed successful deals, and initiating the day with this type of mindset, after reviewing the daily activities, will help to set that positive mood for the rest of the day.
The amount of time that is needed should be clearly scheduled within that calendar. For example, are these simply follow-up informational emails about pricing or closing out the sales contract? Or do they require an hour or so for a full-fledged presentation to these prospects?
Of course, you will want to schedule the whole amount of time needed for these, including the preparation needed for these types of sales pitches and presentations. Remember, it's all about knowing where you're spending your time, so schedule as detailed as possible with any related task.
4. Always assign designated cold calling times – preferably earlier
One thing that must be on the calendar every day, besides dedicated time for those administrative tasks, is to also put in dedicated time for those cold calling and cold emails. This prospecting is what will keep your sales pipeline fresh and is so important you want to make sure to block out your calendar for that time. But, whether it's one or two hours a day, depending on your goals and where you are, it must be there. After all, you're in sales and want to ensure you're doing your core job.
Cold calling can be hard, even for the experienced salesperson, so having a dedicated time each day to start and finish can help to go a long way. In addition, it will mean you're not burning out salespeople by calling too much and letting the rest of their tasks go untouched. You also want to try to handle this prospecting earlier in the day, as it's best to do it while you're fresh and full of energy.
5. Kill time-consuming administrative tasks
A salesperson knows the value of the right type of support tools. Automating these types of tasks is critical, as these minutes working on these repetitive or mundane tasks add up to hours of time that could be spent prospecting calls, following up with warm leads, or cold calling for fresh lead lists. Key organizational tools that help salespeople are integrated CRM systems that help track activities. For example, instead of having to write down a record of every call made to a client, CRM systems should be able to detect these calls and when they occur, and salespeople can simply check off a box to state their level of progress.
This could also automate email communication. Whether using built-in CRM features or third-party email marketing software to track leads and results, you don't want to open up a spreadsheet to track progress and updates manually. Digital to-do lists are also a critical piece of the day, as they're also getting much more advanced and can be integrated with scheduling tools and your CRM system. That means less time looking for that notebook with your list of to-dos and more time selling.
Administrative tasks that still need to be handled should be handled at a specific time of the day when it's the least busy to make client calls or handle any sales activities. This typically tends to be the end of the working day, and that should be the time reserved for such tasks. This way, you're not fumbling through the day trying to keep on top of paperwork and thus being inefficient and disorganized. Instead, it's the time to reply to emails, complete any paperwork to close a sales deal, and also work on preparing offers to potentially interested clients.
6. Prepare for the next day
Once your day is nearly done, you want to build out your to-do's for the next day. This is important as it will save you time the next day trying to create your daily task list and get you started with your already busy schedule. Remember, it's all about that right balance of efficiency and organization, so start planning again when it's that quiet time.
7. Adjust based on your buyer
Keep in mind that while consistency is paramount, you may need to adjust your prospecting and other sales-related activities based on when the buyer is available. For example, suppose you're in restaurant-related sales. In that case, you can stick to the schedule above with a focus on sales-related activities in the earlier part of the day, as restaurants tend to get busier during the lunch and dinner rush.
On the other hand, you may be dealing with people in construction, and their mornings tend to be the busiest, so you'll have to reverse your schedule built above, with admin tasks in the morning and sales-related activities in the afternoon. So, again, it all comes down to when your prime and off-peak hours are, and always focus on the priorities of sales-related activities when possible.
8. Avoid procrastination
While any position needs to work its best to avoid delaying work-related items, it is compounded for those in sales because of how focused they need to be. So when you start to notice areas of procrastination, whether it's handling those pesky administrative tasks or procrastinating to make those initial cold calls due to unnecessary fears, you need to get ahead of those issues and stick to that schedule. Procrastination can easily creep into the day, and before you know it, the entire day is completely unproductive, and you could have lost sales. So don't let it become an issue.
9. In the end
Getting familiar with sales tools early on in a salesperson's career can help with so many items, from streamlined sales processes to automation of administrative tasks. Part of having the right types of tools is having tools with the right type of information. There's nothing worse than being a master of organization with your sales regime but then you end up calling someone for prospecting and realizing the number is incorrect, the person is no longer the correct decision maker, or something else.
That's why you want to get ahead of the curve with the right data sets that can be catered to your industry. That's what we help to provide you at Nymblr. So you can ensure that you're getting verified leads and decision makers for a small fixed price and get back to your hectic yet organized and productive sales days.
Try Nymblr for free today and stop overpaying for contact data and user seats.