Have you ever finished an exhausting nine-hour day at work only to feel that you haven’t really accomplished anything that will help you make more money?
You are not alone.
According to Dr. Gloria Mark, we are interrupted with a minor distraction—something that takes our focus away for just a minute—every three minutes. However, even though that interruption may have only taken just a minute to deal with, it takes on average twenty-three minutes to get back on track.
This means that our days are generally out of our control if we are not proactive about how we manage our time. In sales, time is our currency, and if we do not handle it like money in the bank, then we will not hit sales goals. Here are three ways to take back control of your selling time:
- Block out prospecting time each day: The prospecting that you do today will determine what you are earning in a few months. Therefore, the most effective salespeople consider prospecting to be one of the most important tasks in the course of a day. The easiest way to ensure that you prospect each day is to schedule in a specific time to prospect. Make an appointment in your calendar and treat it like an important meeting.
- Shut off email alerts: One of the biggest distractions to sales people in today’s world is email. Most emails, by definition, are not time critical (or the person would have called you!). So shut off that annoying email alert that goes off every time a new email comes in. Instead, set aside only a few times each day to check what’s in your inbox. Spend the rest of your time focused on what actually makes you money—selling.
- Hold yourself accountable to prospecting activities: Being effective with your time as a sales person is not just about how much time you spend selling, but also what you do in that time. If you have one hour to prospect each day, make a tangible goal for the number of dials you’ll make, introductions you’ll ask for, and meetings you’ll set.
Marc Wayshak is author of the book Game Plan Selling and a sales trainer in Boston.