By Tibor Shanto - firstname.lastname@example.org
I recently read a couple of pieces about common habits and traits of successful CEO’s, two that struck me most were that they plan in advance, and when it comes time to act they maximize that time to execute fully. The second, not only do they all start their days early, but when the alarm goes off, they jump to it, and never hit the snooze button. I think that sales people can learn and benefit from adopting one or both these habits.
Key to success in anything, especially in business is the ability to maximize, to get the most return from any resources you use to achieve your objectives. Given that time is our most precious resource, the better one uses it, the greater the return. The one thing we all have in common with even the most amazing CEO’s, is that we each start the day with 24 hours, and what we do with it is really what differentiates one person from the next.
Let’s look at planning, most are comfortable planning ‘big’, the year, the quarter, the month, even the week. But not many sales people step back to plan the ‘little’, after all, it’s little. But what’s the old saying that it’s the little things that kill you, or your success. I have written her in the past about how other professions spend much more time planning and preparing, than sales people do, and even within sales, if you look at those who are consistently successful, they plan. Especially for activities they know they don’t like or are not good at. A simple example, when it comes to prospecting, I suggest to reps that they ready their call list the afternoon before, during low energy times. But most will leave that task to when they actually make the calls, wasting high value time, and reducing their high value activities, and their success, one day at a time.
Hitting the snooze button is the ultimate expression of procrastination. Being in that state of getting ready, you know you gotta do it, but you put it off if only for nine minutes, ok, one more time, 18 minutes. And that continues through the day, hit snooze button, here, then again there, and by the end of the day, we could lose up to an hour to hitting the snooze.
I know there are things in the day that we don’t like to do, but that should not be the measure, the measure is whether it helps you get prospects, get sales, get ahead. Successful people attack their tasks, devouring those they don’t like, and reveling in the ones they do, but key is they do, and do to the max.
The reality is that certain tasks have to be completed, like them or not, putting them off does not change that, not does it complete them. There is no better time, “I am better in the afternoon”, then afternoon comes, and you have to take that client call, or “I’ll do it right after I grab a coffee.”
Planning will help you avoid procrastinating, execute your plan and move on, but if you don’t have a plan, and you know you don’t like the task, when the time comes to doing it, you’ll hit that snooze button and lose a little more.
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