Everyone can benefit from adopting more productive habits into their day, most especially salespeople. Meeting quotas involves staying on task and focused. They cannot afford the liability of distraction. To learn some key ways to develop productive habits, listen to this episode of Sales Reinvented with special guest Chris Croft!
Chris Croft hails from the United Kingdom and offers in-person training in project and time management. If you’re not native to the UK, he offers courses on Lynda.com and has a popular YouTube channel. He’s been a management coach for over 16 years, is an author, and an all-around expert in the field of time management—a core competency of productivity!
Salespeople are constantly barraged with choices. What activities that they engage in can vary greatly day-to-day. It’s important to focus on the important things and do those well. But many sales professionals are flexible opportunists that are easily distracted—it’s the nature of the job. So having a grasp of time management is essential to being productive.
Chris illustrates his point with a color-based time management model:
The goal to being productive is finding a balance—a blend—of the three colors. All are things that do fall on your to-do list, but each with differing importance.
Chris advocates for completely emptying your mind so you can focus on the present moment. No one wants to be thinking about a project they need to work on while in a meeting with a client. So what do you do? Get a diary, journal, planner, etc. and write everything down. Write down every appt., every promise made, every follow-up call, and any tasks you need to remember.
In that same planner, Chris recommends creating an appointment with yourself every day. A half-hour time-slot for you to plan. His second tip is to never allow your calendar to get full. Save yourself an hour each day for small tasks (such as emails) that crop up throughout the day. Lastly, note whenever you need to complete a follow-up action such as calling a prospect back.
Chris talks about creating a master list and a daily to-do list and why it’s important they must be different. Keep listening!
Chris believes a characteristic of a great salesperson is discipline, and disciplined people know how to overcome procrastination. He details 7 things you can begin to implement to procrastinate less:
Chris outlines some other productivity tools he recommends, habits to develop, and his top 3 do’s and top 3 don’ts. Don’t miss his insight into productivity.
Chris was on holiday in the Lakes District (in England) with his wife. They were walking their dog, and he got a work phone call. He answered it and happily scheduled some training courses. He wrote it in his planner, pocketed it, and continued with his vacation.
Many might criticize him for taking a work call while on vacation.
But to Chris, it was a complete win. He took a few minutes and scheduled something that he loves doing. Blurring the edges between home and work is okay! If you have to completely separate yourself from the work you do, maybe you’re in the wrong job.
Because if you love what you do, it doesn’t feel like work.
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