We believe the most valuable and critical resource for sales reps is ‘TIME’. Often this resource is not used effectively and as the old proverb goes ‘Time is Money’ every lost minute could result in a loss of a client worth hundreds of dollars.
Here are some hacks for salespeople to get more done in less time and use their time effectively:
1. Automate Administrative tasks
Often you will have tasks that can be automated like planning your routine and routes for traveling. These tasks might take up a lot of your time and sometimes you might even procrastinate doing these – another reason to lose time.
Using software to decrease your workload is a good way to save up your time. For example:
- Todoist- a list-making app, can help you make a routine to complete your daily tasks. All you need to do is follow it and complete tasks promptly.
- PandaDoc lets you make customized emails for your clients by collecting data from your CRM. It is an efficient way to create error-free emails in a few clicks and helps you build a good image in front of your clients.
- Sometimes you might need to meet your clients in person for which you can use route planning software to plan your journey and save you the time to focus on other important tasks.
2. Get more organized
As a salesperson, your main goal is to get more sales and clients but none would be possible if you spend too much time searching for files.
To manage files use a cloud-based file management system so that you do not have to spend much time looking for a particular file.
The time saved can be spent on achieving your goals which are to promote sales and gather clients.
3. Be prepared to pivot
Clients cancel all the time but it doesn’t mean that the time that you have dedicated to them cannot be used due to that.
Whenever a client cancels, you can quickly shift to meet your other clients but make sure you are not jumping from one task to another. For example, if you are planning on making an exploratory call to a client and somehow they are not available then give that exploratory call to another client on the list.
Whether you want to make calls or meet them personally, make a list of the clients beforehand so that when one is unreachable you can shift to the other client.
4. Focus on the potential customers
Just like your 2 or 3 friends who will always react to your posts on social media, you will have clients who are going to be your loyal customers and will purchase from you regularly.
Your job here is to find out who these people are and focus your attention more on them. You will also attend to others but be sure to attend to the potential one’s needs as quickly as possible.
5. Do not believe in Multitasking
If you think that multitasking is the way to be productive, then I’m sorry to let you know that this is all a myth. Scientific research has proved that people can’t focus on two tasks at the same time- you are just switching from one task to another. This divides your attention which means you’re not giving your 100% to a particular task.
That is why it is advisable to focus on one task at a time as you will require a different mindset to perform different tasks. Switching between one task will require you to change that mindset and sometimes you might even get confused by changing so many times. This brings me to my next point!
6. Group similar tasks
As we mentioned above do not switch from one task to another, rather group similar tasks so that you can use the same mindset to finish them. This will result in more efficiency.
For example, your company requires you to prospect by sending emails and voicemails. While you can do these tasks together and move from one client to another, it will take you tons of hours to finish and chances are you will not be able to reach your target within the deadline.
A more wise approach to this would be:
- Find out how many people you can reach within a certain time. Call these clients one by one when the time comes.
- After the call is done leave personalized voicemails to each of them according to your research.
- Next, log only the call activity in the CRM and then move to the next client. Repeat the process.
- The next day, focus on sending follow-up emails to the potential clients listed and then record them in the CRM again.
In this way, you will be able to reach out to more clients in a given time and focus on other tasks as well.
7. Streamline Repeatable tasks
Since your target market will be alike to each other in some way or the other, it is possible that you might have to deal with them in a similar way too. So instead of formulating new strategies to deal with each, you can just form a framework and work out the similarities from your past wins to help you in the future.
For example, you don’t have to go to new sources every time you need to meet a client’s demands. You can easily go to the source you used earlier in a similar situation. This saves up your time to do research and gives you more time to focus on other tasks.
8. Eat the Frog
Well, it is quite obvious that there will be some tasks that you will not enjoy doing. You try to avoid doing these or take a lot of time to do them as you get little motivation to do them.
My advice is to finish these tasks at the start of your day so that you do can get rid of the headache caused by them and work calmly for the rest of your day.
9. Keep the momentum
Even small accomplishments are worth celebrating but in order to take do not lose the momentum that you gained while making sales. Suppose you are given 3 hours to finish making calls to clients and convince them to buy your product/service and you actually did manage to convince one. As much as you’d like to take a break then, it would be much more beneficial for you to make more calls just after that as by now you’ve understood how to win their minds.
A break will however shift your focus and it will take you more amount of calls to gain that back
I’m not against taking breaks, you can definitely take a coffee break and finish your assigned task at the given time period but make sure you do not lose focus. A disruption in focus can lead to delaying your work and as a result, you won’t be able to finish in time.
10. Structure our day around your customer
How do you know when to approach your client? Or which is the ideal time to reach out to them? The most common answer is- during the day, early morning, afternoon, evenings, and weekends. This sums it up I guess.
I’m sure you’ve probably guessed by now that there is no definite time to call all your clients. You need to figure out when they are free and then reach out to them or you won’t be able to make a sale. They might not even want to hear you out if they are busy.
If you call a school teacher at 10 am on a weekday, chances are they won’t even pick it up as they’ll bus taking classes then. Therefore structure out the times you can call particular clients to avoid wasting time and also your energy.
11. Building a concise value proposition
When making calls or meeting clients face to face, you might have to answer similar questions like what you have to offer or what are the unique features your product/ service has to offer. For these types of questions, you can create concise answers beforehand so that you do not stumble while answering and look confident to our customers. Remember people have a lower level of patience these days so try not to make too long responses but also do not leave any important information that they might have to know.
12. Keep the distractions out of sight
While you work you will have plenty of distractions in front of you, like your cell phone and the urge to browse through social media. If you’re using a computer will feel like going through the site you use mostly during your leisure time. It is okay to take a break and you might think that it is not a big issue for you to go check out your phone once in a while or check out cool offers on your favorite site.
But when you do, you’ll see that you spent more time on those sites than you actually meant to spend. Not only that, but you will also lose focus and the flow with which you were working after taking this break. At the end of the day, you might be angry with yourself for not being able to finish the work.
A good piece of advice would be to turn off the wifi on your phone and keep it out of sight while you work. Blocking the sites which you do not use for work on the chrome extension is also a good idea.
13. Work out your schedule the night before
Mornings are that da part of the day when your mind is fresh and you feel the most energetic. So it is better to put that time to be productive rather than figuring out what to do with the day. Planning during the morning will tire your mind and you will lower your energy before even doing anything.
Remember that sleep is also important to feel energetic in the morning. Keep your other leisure activities for the weekends and try to follow proper sleep routing during work days.
14. Chunk time
Scientifically you can not focus on something for too long. You are bound to lose focus. But you can definitely choose when to do so. As a student, I try to use the Pomodoro Technique which tells you to work in 25-minute chunks. During those 25 minutes, try not to look at your phone or get up from your workplace. Working constantly for 25 minutes will allow you to get more done.
15. Take Small breaks
The Pomodoro technique also encourages you to take breaks. After every 25-minutes try to take a 5-minute break. You can go have some fresh air or just have a little walk to get your mind and energy back on track.
The key to being a successful and productive salesperson is to learn how to control time. Often people do not understand how to structure out their day and that is where they let time control them. Therefore as a salesperson, try to make time management your top priority so that you can meet your goals and give proper attention to both clients and prospects.