Looking back over my sales career I would have to say that my focus, for the role I had at any given time, varied due to a number of things - external and internal to the company I worked for.
Those who follow the blog may have seen mention that I have worked with and for 21 sales managers during my corporate selling career - at a number of technology, distribution, and financial services companies as an inside sales rep or outside rep. I have also managed sales teams. What was true at each of those stops on the sales road is also true today - a sales job is what you make of it.
Other than having energy and enthusiasm for the products or services you are selling, keeping focus -- a skill you can develop - is critical to success. Barring any medical issues, such as ADD / ADHD, you can help set yourself up to win with a focus on what is needed to accomplish in order to be a top producer. (Note: I am not a therapist or doctor so won't speak to that). I am a sales success coach and trainer - what I will do is help you break down the barriers that you may not be aware of within your working environment that may hurt your success. It gets messy because we are all human beings, and motivation (or lack of it) comes from within and is part of being human. If you have medical / physiological issues, please talk to someone skilled in that, because you can treat it and be successful in selling.
Ways to keep your focus -
- Keep your goals with you - short and long-term. If you use an app to do this, let me know what it is as I'm compiling a list of them.
- Create a master "to-do" list for the day, week, and month. If you feel better checking things off, do that - but it is not necessary to keep focus (it just feels good to those who have that type of style). Stay clear of what is being done and what needs to be done.
- Work to minimize interruptions - it is hard enough to keep focus on your own. Post a sign that says, "CALLING TIME- DO NOT DISTURB" or something like that so people do not interrupt you while you are prospecting.
- Know WHY you are doing what you are doing - why are you in sales for this company instead of another one? What moves you to action? When you know why, you can differentiate. For a big dose of why, watch Simon Sinek's inspiring TED talk.
- Chunk things down to get small wins and victories. It is better to end today with a win than to work all week on something that needs to be done. Try to find ways to break that big week-long project down into small, successful pieces.
Here are some other posts on keeping focus:
What are YOUR secrets to "Keep Your Focus"?
Do you use any technology tools to help you stay on track?
Do you use any "old school" ideas, like an egg timer, to keep you on track?
We'd love to hear your tips and suggestions that work. Share and they help others.
Lori Richardson is recognized as one of the "Top 25 Sales Influencers for 2013" and one of "20 Women to Watch in Sales Lead Management for 2013". Lori speaks, writes, trains, and consults with inside and outbound sellers in technology and services companies. Subscribe to the award-winning blog and the “Sales Ideas In A Minute” newsletter for sales strategies, tactics, and tips in selling. Increase Opportunities. Expand Your Pipeline. Close More Deals.
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