Do What You’ve Always Done?

If the answer to this is yes, then in all likelihood, you’ll get what you always got!

As we start 2014 – we often burden ourselves with the usual yearly promises – eg lose weight, smile more etc – yet some fall in the habit of rolling in to the work year on a ‘let’s see what it brings’ basis with no real planning.

Success isn’t an accident – and planning increases the chances of successes.  Here are some thoughts around how to make your 2014 a professional sales success…

Plan

Now the important part – start with the end.  Look at what you want to achieve this year and what you need to do to get there.  Ask yourself questions like:

  • How will I measure 2014 as a success on 31st December 2014?  Not just your work’s measure – but your personal measure is important
  • What do I need to be doing regularly to achieve this?
    • How many new clients to I need to on board?
    • Who would I like these be?  Find Your Ideal Client
    • Do I already know them?  
    • If not, how do I get to know them? 
    • Who can introduce me to them?
    • Where do I need to be during the year? (eg what functions/groups)
    • Who can help me and my business?
    • Who can I help be a success? (Karma does rub off in sales)
  • Undertake “Stop/Start/Continue”
    • Look at what behaviours you need to stop, start or continue doing which will prevent or help you achieve your goals
  • Undertake a SWOT analysis on yourself – remembering
    • Strengths and Weaknesses are internal 
    • Opportunities and Threats are external
    • So consider
      • What skill gaps you have which may inhibit you achieving your goals and what you can do to minimise/eliminate them.  A strategy here may be bringing others in to fill this gap?
      • If you are continually internally focused, you will miss the external opportunities or threats, so also look outwards are the market, competitor intel etc as these may help or hinder you
      • Do just look at your skills – but also look at your behaviours.  Often these are harder to change – but have the biggest impact on your success (eg a highly skilled person but they have poor attitude or motivation)
  • Review your diary.  Make sure it reflects the above.  

The most important part is to review this weekly!

Some other aspects which are worth doing at this time of year are:

Organise

Over the course of year we accumulate a great deal of professional detritus.  Whether it’s physical items on and around our workspaces (eg files and information we think we’ll use ‘at some point) or digital clutter (eg email mailing lists we’ve subscribed to and habitually delete without ever reading)

The beginning of the year is a great time to sort all this out – a spring clean if you wish.

Some things to think about:

  • What mailing lists are you on which are wasting your time – then unsubscribe.  Be brutal, you can always resubscribe
  • De-clutter your workspace.  File/trash files/information, give it a clean, sort out your drawers etc.  Set yourself up for the year
  • Tidy up your Linked In – send invites to those you’ve worked with over the last 12 months, check no competitors have crept in to your contacts, ask for recommendations etc
  • Tidy your email up.  Set up rules to move regular emails that don’t need immediate attention, set up folders, archive old information
  • Make sure you have client contact details correct in your phone so you can ring whenever and where ever you need to
  • Look at what blogs/sites you want to review regularly and subscribe to their newsletter (hint:  this one!)
  • Consider your brand – throw our old shirts/ties/blouses etc.  Present yourself with the image you want to portray
  • Look at your training and development for the year and set the wheels in motion
  • Plan any large events and diarise them out in advance to maximise their value
The success of 2014 is in your hands now – do you want to get what you’ve always gotten?

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