Increasing Your Sales Productivity: Simple Steps for Profitable Time Management

By Colleen Francis

Everybody is after me about Time Management these days. Specifically: “How do I manage my time each week to maximise my sales productivity”

Assuming you have 40 hours in a week to spend on sales and invest in growing your business how best should you spend that time? Below you will find my suggestions for a schedule that is consistent with thriving in any economy.

You might notice that the total number of hours adds up to more than 40 because I know that some of the ideas I am suggesting may not apply to you - or you might just downright refuse to do some of them despite my constant urging of them as a best practice. On the other hand, some of you are freakishly productive and can complete the tasks much faster than I. If that is the case, move quickly, add activities and by all means DO MORE in the time allotted.

Sales Activity

Hours per Week

Call 4 "past" or "lost" clients to maintain communication and for potential reactivation

5

Call 25 qualified prospects per day for pipeline management

10

Network with a partner once per day by phone

2.5

Read for professional growth and skill development

2.5

Attend a networking event or association meeting once per week

2

Write an article for your blog, newsletter or association trade journal

5

Call 5 existing clients to ask for referrals

5

Call 10 suspects per day to fill the pipeline with potential leads

5

Surf the internet or your database to find new prospects

1

Develop alliance, referral or reseller partners

2.5

Plan “in the neighbourhood” meetings for when you are travelling

1

Research trade shows to attend for promotion

1

Send email newsletter to your customer list

2

Send special mailers - thank you cards, birthday cards, client thank you gifts to your clients and referral sources

2

Look for advertising opportunities or review and upgrade the ones you currently have

1

Stop in and see 1 client on your way into the office each day

5

Call 5 clients and ask for testimonials

2.5

Recently I conducted a poll with my clients—most of whom were in leadership positions—to determine their biggest sales concerns. The overwhelming answer was sales productivity. In other words, how much revenue per period can each team member produce, and how can we make that better.

You can chart your sales productivity daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly or even annually. And, given that we have just finished a calendar year recently, you have a great opportunity right now to take a look at your own productivity or that of your team from last year.

We all want improved productivity, but if you don't know how productive you were last year, how will you know what to improve? For ideas on how to measure your productivity check out this article in our article library http://www.engageselling.com/articles/090108article.shtml

To reinvent your sales this year, you must know your benchmarks from last year. Once that's established, you can choose the right activities to improve. You must measure results at every step, and make decisions based on the numbers—not your gut feeling.

As I do every year, I invite you to set a goal for yourself for the coming year and send me your implementation plan. I am happy to hold your feet to the fire every month—just a friendly check-in to see how you're doing!

Remember that this first step to better results this year is knowing where you stood at the end of last year. Like most sales professionals, it's likely that you can quickly recite exactly how much you closed and how much you earned last year. But have you stopped to consider just how productive you were based on the activities you completed? It's a question worth pondering. Once you are confident in the answer take stock of how you spend your time and add some profitable activities from the list above. I know you will profit if you do.

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Nonstop Sales Boom by Colleen Francis Make sure you check out Colleen's latest book, Nonstop Sales Boom for powerful strategies to drive consistent sales growth quarter after quarter, year after year.

Colleen Francis, Sales Expert, is Founder and President of Engage Selling Solutions (www.EngageSelling.com). Armed with skills developed from years of experience, Colleen helps clients realize immediate results, achieve lasting success and permanently raise their bottom line.

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