How you think, how you feel, and what you do, will most certainly determine your sales results. Seems like a fairly simple formula, but the reality is that the vast majority of sales people dont understand that discipline plays a huge role in selling success. High producing sales people know they cant change the economy or the timing of a client buying process but they can change themselves, and they do it on a continual basis.
Since we are just coming off a long holiday weekend now would be the perfect time to do an assessment of your sales discipline. Consider these questions as you rate your own performance.
Did your day/ week start on time?
Many sales people feel compelled to ease into the week, especially after a long holiday weekend. However, highly disciplined sales people often start their week on Sunday by reviewing their upcoming activities and building out their weekly work plan. Starting this process on Monday eats up the valuable selling time! Also note to self, dont get sucked into the perpetual doom loop of meetings. If a meeting is not critical or mandatory consider not going or sending a proxy.
Do you know how much required sales pipeline you need by sales stage.
Many sales people only look at their forecast when they are required to submit a monthly forecast update. (This usually entails slipping the close dates for the deals you hoped to close last month.) Take the time to really give your pipeline a close examination and be honest with yourself on which deals are still viable and which ones are dead, especially those high probability deals that have aged or gone dark. If your pipeline is weak focus on increasing the quantity of early stage prospects, thats the best way to ensure you have continual supply of late stage prospects.
Do you have a plan to help move your prospects along the sales cycle?
As your buyer is moving through the buy cycle its critical that you continue to provide a stream of quality information/content. This helps them make the right informed decision and to make sure your firm stays top of mind. Finding out that a prospect bought from your competitor because you were not close enough to the buying process is demoralizing and a huge waste of company resources.
The devils is in the details.
Ok lets be honest here, no sales person likes to do administrative tasks but accurate sales forecasting is critical to the health of the business. Take the time to make sure your forecast is accurate in terms of both deal close timing and revenue. Accurate forecasting tells the senior leadership team you understand that business decisions are based on the forecasts you provide, and that you are confident in the quality and accuracy of the data you are providing.
Take a look at the top sales producers in almost any company, you will likely find self disciplined, hard working individuals that persistently approach their selling duties regardless of the economic climate or internal corporate politics. How well do your skills match up?