I’m an active sales coach & traveling sales consultant, but I still have to make time to prospect and sell my own services. I write often to share the time management tips and techniques I’ve used to master my calendar.
I believe that once you learn to manage your day with purpose, on purpose, the better you’ll be in all other areas of your life.
I have a client who lives in the Pacific time zone, but her headquarters are in the Eastern time zone. In her company, emails start flying back and forth around 6 am, which is 3 am her time. Despite the insanity of it, she feels compelled to reply to emails during what was literally the middle of the night.
While you might not have the added stress of a time zone differential, many people struggle to handle emails in an efficient manner. A recent study from Microsoft indicates that email takes up roughly 35% of the average worker’s day! But taking some simple steps to manage your email effectively can take your productivity through the roof.
You’ve heard about the effectiveness of time blocking (did I just hear you groan?). And you know how it can help you close more business. Yet you continue to come up with lame excuses about how it just won’t work for you.
But the top ultra-producers in every field are those that protect their calendars with their lives. Now is the perfect opportunity to examine how you’re spending your time.
Picture this: It’s Monday morning. You’ve shaken off the cobwebs of the weekend, and you’re ready to tackle a new week when you receive an email from a client or prospect, canceling their meeting for that day. Or maybe you’re the one sending the email, realizing over that first cup of coffee that you’re not prepared or you’ve accidentally double-booked yourself.
There’s nothing more frustrating than having taken time to prepare for a meeting that never took place! Well, I’ve got a magic wand for you. There’s an easy way to prevent you from being on the canceling end of this sticky situation again.
Meetings often feel like a necessary evil, don’t they? And we’ve all been in meetings with little to no agenda and seen how they can quickly spiral into chaos.
I’ll be frank here—no one wants to be in that room! We’re all busy people, so being cognizant of your time, as well as the time of the other participants, is key to having a productive meeting.
Successful meetings follow an agenda. Without one, the inclination is to just wing it, which almost always results in people talking about topics that, while perhaps important, are not immediately relevant to what the business needs to focus on at that time.
Successful team meetings include the following six core components:
Setting yourself up for success—both personally and professionally—starts with cultivating self-discipline and holding yourself accountable. The most effective rules, after all, are the ones you set for yourself.
For me, a huge part of making sure I’m achieving everything I want to do in this life is sticking to those self-set rules, which I call my non-negotiables. These are the key things that I know I must do in both my work and personal life to reach the goals I’ve set for myself. Stick to your guns on these, and you’ll see that over time, your routine will become habit and you’ll be powering towards reaching those cherished goals.
These are the items that get done, no matter what:
Meetings are an inescapable part of doing business. But they’re also one of the biggest sources of wasted time and money when run inefficiently.
I recently attended a sales meeting where the manager printed out every email he’d sent his team that week. He began by spreading them out on the conference room table and reviewing each one. As I watched his entire team painfully sit through this bizarre crime scene reconstruction of their week (during prime prospecting time!), I estimated that he wasted $1,500 of his organization’s money.
We’ve all heard that “time is money,” right? Well, it’s true. And most of you probably know that determining the value of your time can be the first step in becoming a more effective professional.
You may have even tried using your hourly rate to make better time management decisions. But if you are a salesperson, you’re selling yourself short when you calculate the value of your time using the traditional “hourly rate” formula. There’s a much better way.