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Sales Reinvented

Author: Paul Watts

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We at Sales Reinvented are on a mission to change the negative perception of selling. Each week we will be interviewing experts in the field of sales and sharing their knowledge, ideas and expertise with our listeners. They share with us in our vision of a world where selling is profession to be proud of.

The aim of our formatted show is to provide ‘snackable’ episodes that are short enough to listen to in one sitting but long enough to provide real value that will help you in your sales career.

Welcome to the Sales Reinvented Podcast.
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Today’s guest, Lisa Leitch, believes that proactive prospecting is key to productivity as a salesperson. It takes discipline, rigor, and drive to achieve results. It’s important to learn to be efficient and get into a rhythm. In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Lisa shares her take on productivity and a few key strategies that can help you become a more productive sales professional. Lisa is the President and Sales Strategist of Teneo Results. She’s been a sales and training coach for over 15 years and worked with thousands of salespeople in over 250 different companies. Her mantra is “Be strategic. Be Proactive. Be Brave”. She brings years of experience in the sales world to this episode—don’t miss it! Outline of This Episode [0:53] Lisa’s definition of productivity and its importance [1:56] Why aren’t salespeople as productive as they could be? [2:58] Steps to improve day-to-day productivity? [4:30] What are the attributes of a productive salesperson? [6:10] Lisa’s foolproof strategies to improve productivity [11:58] Lisa’s favorite productivity story Don’t get stuck in the day-to-day According to Lisa, being in the sales industry requires rigor and determination. You need to achieve results—and discipline and rigor are what get you there. But in the sales world, no two days are the same. It puts you at a disadvantage because it’s difficult to get into a rhythm and be efficient.  Instead of focusing on improving day-to-day productivity, Lisa proposes setting 3-year goals. Where do you and your team want to be in 3 years? You can then break those goals down into yearly, quarterly, and weekly goals. You dissect those weekly goals into 7-day tasks. It’s about having a long-term vision for success and being future-focused.  Be clear on your ideal clients Salespeople are often so focused on making sales and creating revenue that they lose sight of their ideal prospects. It’s not all about getting a yes—sometimes it’s about saying no. You must walk away from clients who won’t help you yield results or who you know will be high-maintenance.  If you have clarity on your ideal client it helps you focus your prospecting. It helps you attract and do business with the right people, where you can help them grow their business. One strategy you can use is to refer clients who aren’t a good fit to other people who “serve those types of clients better”. In that way, it’s not a hard no, but the offering of a better fit. The concept of Proactive Prospecting A strategy that Lisa has found greatly improves her productivity is Proactive Prospecting. Salespeople always want to be growing their business and keeping their pipelines full. Lisa blocks time to prospect, reach out to existing clients, schedule meetings, and more. She points out that to grow the business you need to move the needle on your dashboard.  Lisa blocks Thursday mornings from 7:30 am to 8:55 am. She has found that this is the most productive time to be prospecting. You catch VP’s of sales (or other senior leaders) in their offices before their 9 am meetings. They’re also more likely to respond to an email or answer their phones. She sets a goal to make at least 10 phone calls in that time slot.  Another strategy that Lisa finds simple but effective is the “Double Whammy”. People are more likely to use email, but it is easy to accidentally delete a message. If that’s your preferred method of reaching out she recommends following up with a 2nd point of contact with a different medium such as call, text, or message on LinkedIn. Lisa’s tips to keep you efficient Lisa points out that if you’re trying to be more efficient you need to maximize your time. If you’re traveling to a meeting with a client, always look for a 2nd client to meet with. She also recommends shutting off your email notifier. It’s an unnecessary distraction and your messages are likely not urgent.  Above all, don’t be a transactional seller. Do your best to answer client questions and respond to whatever they need, but focus on being consultative. When you focus on building relationships with your clients and understand their needs you can provide solutions to their challenges—and be more productive. Resources & People Mentioned Asana Connect with Lisa Leitch Lisa on LinkedIn Lisa’s Twitter Teneo Results Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Mark Hunter believes that productivity is best defined by the incremental value you provide customers as you help them achieve outcomes. It isn’t about being busy or crossing items off of a to-do list. It is about providing value. What does that look like? How does a salesperson accomplish it? Learn more in this episode of SaleReinvented! Mark—known as the ‘Sales Hunter’—is arguably one of the greatest minds in the world of sales. He is an accomplished speaker, consultant, and author of multiple best-selling books. With an astounding 30+ years of sales leadership experience, he repeatedly helps companies find and retain better prospects. Paul picks his brain in this episode—don’t miss it! Outline of This Episode [0:57] What does productivity mean to Mark? [1:51] Why is productivity important? [2:41] Why aren’t sales professionals productive?  [3:59] How to improve day-to-day productivity [5:40] The mindset of a productive salesperson [7:50] Productivity hacks that Mark embraces [11:12] Top 3 productivity dos and don’ts [13:33] A productivity challenge that Mark has faced Where you spend your time is determined by the outcomes you desire for your customer Mark is adamant that you cannot get hung-up on a to-do list. Instead, you must determine the desired outcome for your day and client. Once you have the outcome nailed down, you backfill the activities that will fill your day. In this way, you are more focused and not distracted by your list.  He recommends staying on task by preparing for each day the night before. He writes down exactly what he hopes to accomplish so that he doesn’t spend an hour of his morning ‘dinking around’ figuring out what his day will look like.  Mark points out that any professional athlete goes into their game with a game plan in place to win. They have a clear vision in mind. Sales professionals need to view themselves in the same way—as professionals with clear goals and outcomes in mind.  A productive salesperson has the right mindset  Mark states that you cannot “Allow other people to define your level of success—only YOU can define your level of success”. He often sees salespeople get discouraged because their performance doesn’t measure up to someone else’s. His message is clear: you must stop defining your success by someone else’s accomplishments. Instead, measure yourself against yourself.  If you start each day with the mindset of an optimist, you’ll start to notice the incredible amount of opportunities available to you. You just have to be ready, open, and conditioned to recognize them. Mark starts every activity with the desire to influence whoever it is he’s dealing with, create impact for each party—and exit a better person. Throw your to-do list in the garbage Instead of relying on a to-do list, Mark lives by time-blocking. Once you have your desired outcome nailed down, block time in your schedule for each activity that advances you towards that outcome. When you define your time, you stop allowing the work to expand and overtake your time. YOU compact the work into the time you’ve made available for it.  Mark is ruthless with his calendar, and other top-performers such as Richard Branson and Mark Cuban do the same.  His second sage piece of advice is to do your most difficult task first thing in the morning. In his words, “The mountains are never high as you think and the lows are never as low as you anticipated”. Whatever you may be dreading won’t ever be as bad as you anticipate! Mark believes you must think and process in the long-term but live in the moment. Following that reasoning, he states that everyone NEEDS a 25-year goal. If you don’t set long-term goals, “You go through life reacting to things, not acting to create them”.  Marks tips and strategies to stay productive  Mark operates by the adage that ‘tomorrow begins today’. So what are the things he recommends doing to get a head start? How do you continue being productive? Build a list of outcomes and block your time accordingly.  Celebrate success at the end of every day.  Don’t start your day looking at emails—block them into your schedule.  Avoid starting your day on Social Media. It can be critical to sales (but also a complete time-suck). Set a timer and move on when your time is up.  Remember you don’t have to do it all. Delegate tasks and activities whenever you can.  Lastly, Mark wants you to recognize that there will be times when you fail. He points out that every great baseball player strikes out more than they get to 1st base—but they’re still millionaires.  Don’t kick yourself when you don’t get something accomplished. Stay positive and remember to focus on celebrating the good that has happened—because only YOU can motivate yourself. To hear the rest of Mark’s take on productivity and what you can do to achieve better outcomes for your clients, listen to the whole episode!  Resources & People Mentioned Book: Eat That Frog! by Brian Tracy Book: A Mind For Sales by Mark Hunter Book: High-Profit Selling by Mark Hunter Book: High-Profit Prospecting by Mark Hunter Connect with Mark Hunter LinkedIn Twitter Mark’s website Connect With Paul Watts LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Is your definition of productivity truly working for you? Are you stuck in an endless loop of activities? If you’re treading water and seem incapable of completing the sales activities you need to, it’s time to redefine what productivity means to you. Jeff Bajorek joins Paul in this episode of Sales Reinvented to help you rethink how you view productivity. Jeff is a sales improvement consultant specializing in the B2B space. He’s co-host of ‘The Why And The Buy’ podcast and author of ‘Rethink The Way You Sell: The Five Forgotten Fundamentals of Prospecting’. In this episode he’ll share his thoughts on productivity, his top 3 do’s and don’ts, and what you should do to become more productive.  Outline of This Episode [0:54] What does Jeff Bajorek think productivity is? [1:54] Why is productivity so important in sales? [3:23] How do you increase your productivity? [7:16] The tools Jeff finds effective [9:18] Jeff’s top 3 dos and top 3 don’ts [12:07] Jeff’s favorite productivity story The definition of productivity is anything you want it to be  Jeff points out that productivity is getting enough stuff done—and YOU get to decide what ‘enough’ is. Once you’ve defined what productivity looks like for you, you can implement systems and structures to knock things out. It gives you the freedom to implement what systems work best for you. According to Jeff, you must be informed, intentional, and purposeful. Define how you’re going to be productive and then commit to it to reach your sales goals. He notes that many salespeople get stuck in “analysis paralysis”. They’re so hyper-focused on what needs to be done that the ‘how’ gets lost.  Instead of getting lost in analysis paralysis, Jeff recommends deciding ahead of time what the important activities are. Avoid distractions and non-sales activities and follow the 4 steps of the sales cycle:   Identify who you can help Get their attention Communicate your value Get them to commit to the process Whatever you do needs to lead to the advancement of those 4 activities.  The attributes of a productive sales professional  According to Jeff, the #1 attribute of a sales professional NEEDS to be the ability to be disciplined. Once you’ve identified what’s important, you must have the discipline to carry through on those tasks—especially when you don’t want to. For Jeff, this meant completing sales calls reports. He hated them but believes doing them made him more effective. You must also be open-minded. While Jeff believes many of the tech tools available have the uncanny ability to get in the way, you must be able to evaluate and embrace them if they’ll make you more efficient. You have to be able to learn new tricks as an old dog.  Lastly, Jeff points out that you must be humble. Be willing to admit you don’t know it all—and keep learning.  Don’t be afraid to say NO Jeff shares his ‘top 3 productivity do’s and top 3 don’ts’ and one concept that struck Paul was learning how to say no. To be productive you must prioritize and schedule what needs to be done. Everything else can be squeezed in around it. However, if you’re taking on too many activities and trying to fly by the seat of your pants you will struggle to hit your numbers.  Don’t give yourself too much credit—don’t take on more than you can handle. Everyone is guilty of it at one time or another. You must learn to underpromise and over-deliver. Say yes to the activities that are important and don’t be afraid to say no. Jeff embraces careful consideration when he makes decisions, citing “Every time you’re saying YES you’re saying NO to something else”.  Rethinking the process of productivity When Jeff left a previous job, he wanted to implement some things that he had learned over his time there but were considered “risky”. He took a good hard look at his calendar and implemented a new system based on his research. He took the activities he knew moved the sales process along and got himself in front of prospects. He made sure his value proposition was clear and asked people to take the next step with him every single meeting.   He changed the focus of his days and made sure every activity he completed was worth doing (and measurable). What he found was that he was able to cut down time spent working to ⅓ of what it was previously—but he tripled his sales activities. He had a 9x return on results to activity. It changed his productivity and his personal life. According to his wife, he became less stressed and more like himself.  He points out that you must always ask yourself: “Are you spending enough time, doing enough of the right things, to get enough done?”. To hear the full conversation, be sure to listen to the whole episode! Resources & People Mentioned Todoist Evernote Book: Rethink The Way You Sell The Why And The Buy podcast Connect with Jeff Bajorek Jeff on LinkedIn Jeff on Twitter JeffBajorek.com Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
If you learn to define and prioritize high-value activities you will become a more productive sales professional. If you know what activities hold the highest value and act on those over lower-value activities you set yourself up for success. We have finite reserves—you get to choose where you invest your time, energy, motivation and discipline. Amy Franko joins Paul in this episode of Sales Reinvented to chat about how she prioritizes her time to be successful in sales. Amy specializes in working with B2B organizations on sales effectiveness. She is a trainer and consultant, keynote speaker, and author of The Modern Seller.  Outline of This Episode [0:46] What is productivity? [1:50] What makes us unproductive [2:51] Improving productivity [4:13] Attributes of a great salesperson [5:07] Productivity Tools and tips [6:30] Top 3 dos and top 3 don'ts [11:34] Amy’s favorite productivity story Learn to say ‘no’ to prioritize high-value activities Amy points out that salespeople often have a huge list of sales activities to tackle. They’re often given the added burden of administrative tasks that they don’t need on their plates. This automatically lowers your ability to focus on high-value tasks. You must define what activity only you can do so you can delegate—or drop altogether—what isn’t a priority. Where are you going to devote your resources? What can you say no to? How do you become a more productive salesperson? A good sales professional knows the difference between just staying busy versus being productive. They are decisive about where they spend their time. Amy says you need to learn to focus on the big picture. Look at your week and set 3 goals—the high-value activities that will bring you forward progress. Likewise, she does the same thing daily: she prioritizes 3 things to get accomplished. If you start with a list of 10+ activities, you will never get anything done. But if you narrow your focus and knock out the most important things, it can leave room to knock out whatever’s left.  They time-block what’s important to stay organized. She recommends using a timer for each activity. It frees up your mind to focus on the task-at-hand instead of watching the clock. When the alarm goes off, you can re-evaluate where you’re at and either devote more time or move on to the next task.  Amy also loves using agendas to stay on track with meetings. Lastly, she likes to keep it old-school and use a paper list to track what she’s focusing on in a particular day.  Amy’s top 3 Productivity Do’s and Don’ts What are some things you should—or shouldn’t—do to enhance productivity? You must decide that your time is something you want to invest—not spend.  Design an environment that supports your productivity. Amy invested in a co-working space for when she needs to focus and knock out projects. Her home office brought too many distractions, so she came up with a better plan! Block your professional time AND your personal time in a way that works for you.  Don’t say yes to every opportunity, but take time to decide if it’s right for you. Don’t procrastinate on follow-up—do as many of those tasks while they’re fresh in your mind.  Don’t forget to bring an agenda to your meetings with clients. You’ll be far more productive. These are just a few of the things that Amy has found are imperative to her success that is easy for anyone to implement.  What Amy learned launching her book: The Modern Seller Writing a book is a huge undertaking. You aren’t just writing—you’re creating content, dealing with publishing, as well as marketing. Complex projects have a lot of moving parts, and Amy learned some valuable things that she wanted to share: To do something meaningful, she had to make trade-offs on other activities. She had to invest her time wisely to accomplish her dream of publishing a book.  She invested in an accountability partner. Amy hired a book coach and did a weekly call with her. Knowing she had to give her an update kept her on task and moving forward.  Big things are never accomplished alone. You need a support team so that you can focus on what your strengths are and the high-value activities that produce revenue.  Amy is full of useful tips and tricks that she’s learned throughout the years. Take advantage of this opportunity to learn from one of the best and listen to the whole episode of Sales Reinvented! Resources & People Mentioned Leff Bonney Todoist The Modern Seller by Amy Franko Connect with Amy Franko Amy’s website LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Revenue = frequency x competency is one way that Chad Burmeister measures productivity. You have to be able to do more in a shorter period of time—you must increase your frequency. Over time, as you gain experience and focus on frequency, your competency will grow. This increases productivity and therefore increase revenue. Chad and Paul discuss this topic in-depth in this episode of Sales Reinvented. Chad is the founder and CEO of ScaleX.ai—ScaleX leverages artificial intelligence and sales automation to automate up to 75% of sales reps tasks so that they can focus on higher-value work. He is the author of multiple Sales Hack books and a recently published book about AI for sales. Chad is passionate about helping sales professionals crush their quotas and increase revenue. Outline of This Episode [0:57] Chad Burmeister’s definition of productivity [2:55] The reality of effective sales professionals [4:48] Steps to balance the equation [9:10] Attributes of a great salesperson [11:30] Chad’s favorite productivity tools [19:17] A story you can learn from  Are salespeople really less productive?  The prevailing statistic is that approximately 50% of sales professionals are hitting their quotas. Chad believes this isn’t accurate. He points out that finance departments are usually the ones setting the quotas for sales professionals to reach. Have they set the bar too high? Are they setting unrealistic expectations? Chad points out that it takes ⅔ the amount of people to drive 1 billion in revenue compared to 5 years ago. They are actually ⅓ more productive! There are technologies in place that helps salespeople become more efficient and effective. In the long run, he doesn’t think sales pros are less productive—he thinks unrealistic quotas are manipulating the numbers. Improving productivity is still possible While Chad believes the bar is being set too high for quotas, there is always room for improving the productivity of a salesperson. He states that the average seller executes 50-60 sales activities per day—but that baseline can be improved.  There is a lot of noise in selling. So much so that in the last two years alone, it now takes 10x more sales touches to book a meeting. To increase revenue, you need frequent meetings to make a sale. How can that be done? Chad points out that email marketing is proving to be ineffective, with an average response rate of 0.5-3%. Social selling fares much better, with an 8-12% engagement rate. Ultimately, he believes phone calls are having a resurgence and is still one of the most effective ways to connect with your prospect.  Getting on the phone with your prospect is the hardest part. This is where Chad recommends agent-assisted dialing. You initiate the dial, and a combination of software and human intervention navigates you to the person you need to connect with. Keep listening to find out why Chad believes this helps increase productivity.  What attributes make a productive salesperson?  According to Chad, a high-achieving salesperson has to perform at a better level than anyone else. He shares a story about an athlete who made Presidents Club three years in a row. He was a football player used to being pushed to do better and be better than the competition. He took that mindset into his sales position and blew his sales team out of the park.  He did so by learning tricks and tactics that set him apart from the competition—and didn’t share them with anyone else. One of the tools he used was agent-assisted dialing. He would come to the office early and initiate calls on the East Coast and drive 1,000 calls to someone else's 100.  Chad points out a simple tip to live by: know the metrics of your team and focus on increasing your frequency. Statistically speaking, more phone calls equals more conversations. And as you increase your conversations, your competency soars. Your revenue should increase. But it all starts with a willingness to do more than everyone else.  Revenue = Frequency x Competency: Tools that help you balance the equation  Chad is a firm believer that you must embrace the technology available to you and leverage it in a way that benefits you. It’s a given that everyone should have a good CRM. But what else does he think you need? LinkedIn Navigator: 90% of companies use this tool, and it should be 100%. It helps you build and nurture customer relationships on LinkedIn.  Agent-Assisted Dialing: Getting someone on the phone can be a monotonous process. Making calls that an $8 an hour worker could do is wasting your time, so he recommends outsourcing it.  BDR.ai (or another similar program): Something that executes social sales activities to allow you to focus elsewhere. Calendly or Chili Piper: Gone are the days of emailing back and forth to lock down a meeting. These tools simplify the process of connecting with your prospect.  FlowEngine.ai or Get The Lead: help find leads, ranks who you should reach out to, and even helps you gauge what to say to the leads.  Chad is passionate about what he does. To get the most out of his expertise and hear in detail how he operates, listen to the whole episode! Resources & People Mentioned Rob Jeppsen on LinkedIn Skip Miller on LinkedIn Topo The Bridge Group Bregal Sagemount Vengreso Dux-Soup LinkedIn Helper BDR.ai Flow Engine Get The Lead Calendly Chili Piper AI for Sales by Chad Burmeister How to Get a Meeting with Anyone by Stu Heinecke I Want to Be in Sales When I Grow Up! By John Barrows Connect with Chad Burmeister LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
A salesperson needs to utilize behavioral intelligence to be effective. What does that look like? It’s about leveraging your skills and abilities to follow through and accomplish goals. This is imperative to your success as a sales professional. Mary Grothe joins Paul to discuss productivity and how behavioral intelligence—and your behavioral quotient—impacts your ability to make sales. Don’t miss this engaging episode of Sales Reinvented! Mary Grothe started her career with a Fortune 1000 company in an administrative role. She quickly excelled and demonstrated the necessary skills to transition into a sales position. Since then, she’s sold millions in revenue. She is the CEO and Founder of Sales BQ®, a firm geared towards helping businesses rebuild sales and marketing departments to achieve growth and increase revenue.  Outline of This Episode [1:08] Mary Grothe’s take on sales productivity [2:21] Why aren’t salespeople productive? [4:40] Improve day-to-day productivity [6:30] Attributes a salesperson should have [7:40] Tools, tactics, and strategies [9:30] Top 3 dos and top 3 don’ts [12:10] Mary’s greatest productivity story A productive salesperson must learn to master the “in-between” Mary points out that most salespeople are highly intelligent. They are product ninjas who know their marketplace and their competition. They excel at engaging with prospects and making them feel understood. To be productive, they must show up and do the work, day-in and day-out. They tend to excel at the core tasks of their position. To Mary, being productive in all of these areas is important—but you must master the in-between. In-between phone calls and meetings, where is your time being spent? You must be smart and effective with every minute of your day and not let little things fall through the cracks. If a salesperson doesn’t excel at something, it’s easy for them to only focus their attention on their strengths. How is that remedied? Keep listening to find out! Salespeople need structure to stay on-task Mary states that some organizations are a “hot mess” and don’t have a good infrastructure in place to set their salespeople up for success. A good CRM, automation, technology, and a playbook are essential. Structure, guidance, and a constant feedback loop are imperative. If there isn’t a good framework in place, they won’t be productive—it’s that simple. She’s also noticed that many salespeople aren’t detail-oriented. It’s not in their nature. If they aren’t held accountable through every step of the process, they’ll find activities to spend their time on that they find fulfilling. That is why it is of the utmost importance to have a guidebook and system in place.  Organization and planning make a world of difference Mary is naturally a very organized person (which she’s found is a HUGE indicator of success). It’s so easy to be overwhelmed by emails or distracted by social media. What starts as an essential tool can hinder your progress. She knows you must teach sales professionals how to prioritize their days so they enter the office with a game plan—not just winging it.  The most productive people have a plan and know where every single minute of their day is going.It is a game-changer. When Mary first started in sales, she was the first person showing up at the office to knock out administrative work. She would leave for her day of scheduled appointments when most of her coworkers were just showing up.  Mary became an accomplished salesperson because she was disciplined, organized, and planned her day in advance. She would map out her day the evening before and visually gauge where she was going and what she needed to do the next day to be on par with her goals.  The behavioral quotient of behavioral Intelligence  Mary defines the behavioral quotient as the “conscious decision to show up and perform every day at the highest ability”. It is changing your mental mindset so that being mediocre is never an option. Instead, you must have a winning mindset. There is no plan B, and a misstep is equal to lost revenue.  Your mental mindset triggers feelings that dictate actions and yield results. You must change how you think, how you feel, and how you act to change how you perform. She notes it’s amazing how these changes will impact your results and make you a more productive salesperson.  Mary was willing to do whatever it took (ethically) to find success in her position and strives to help other businesses do the same. To hear her top 3 productivity do’s and don’ts and other tips for success, be sure to listen to the entire episode of Sales Reinvented! Resources & People Mentioned Sales BQ® Connect with Mary Grothe LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Goal alignment in business can be a powerful tool. It’s not only a tool—but a necessity. Are the different departments working in unison? Are you part of a sales team at war with the marketing team? If you’re ready to become more productive and ready to find ways to align with the goals of the company, listen to this episode now! Christopher Ryan joins Paul to share his experience with goal alignment and how it was the key to his success. He is the CEO, founder, and Revenue Growth Catalyst and Execution Expert at Fusion Marketing partners. He is an expert in B2B marketing and helping businesses grow their revenue.  Outline of This Episode [1:00] Christopher Ryan shares what productivity means to him [1:55] Why aren’t salespeople effective? [4:55] What are the attributes of a productive salesperson? [7:20] Tools, strategies, and tactics [10:05] Top 3 productivity do’s and top 3 don’ts [14:30] Christopher’s favorite productivity story Knowledge and a desire to serve will set you apart A productive salesperson also needs to master their niche. They should have deep product and domain knowledge. They know how to bring information and resources to the table that a competitor can’t match.  A sales representative doesn’t need to be aggressive. In fact, Christopher points out that the best sales professionals have a desire to serve. They are people who really want to help, not just make a sale. They’ve mastered the art of friendly persistence and the ability to sell without offending the prospect. Above all else, they recognize that their prospects are human beings. Human beings who aren’t looking for a transaction, but a relationship, a rapport. Successful salespeople have pleasing personalities—they want their prospects to feel happy and confident with the relationship. Christopher’s favorite tools + tactics Christopher shares his top 4 solutions for helping a sales professional stay productive. What are they? Use a CRM system: It helps keep you organized. It is a tool to help capture everything you’re trying to keep in your head.  Use a calendar tool: Christopher recommends Calendly or any tool that makes it easy for prospects to book time with you. Content Management System (CMS): What resources do you need at certain points in the sales cycle to facilitate the process of selling? Organize it here.  Find a content curation system: gather information so you understand what’s being talked about and what will help your prospects. Christopher’s top 3 productivity do’s and don’ts Christopher brought so much value in this episode and shared some of his best productivity hacks. These are the top 3 things he believes you must do: Understand and promote a unique brand promise. If you are different, unique, and offer something of value your product is set apart.  Work closely with your marketing division. You must agree on a process and recognize you’re on the same team.  Plug revenue leakages. What leads weren’t followed up on? Was something handled outside of the system? Make the process easier.  What things shouldn’t you do? Don’t waste valuable time with unqualified prospects. Make sure you’re talking to the right people. Don’t do your own lead qualification. Allow your sales development team to handle this part of the process. Never stay in an unpleasant or hostile business. Don’t be afraid to leave. Happy and healthy employees produce the best results.  Why goal alignment is so important Christopher was the VP of marketing at a software company. The business didn’t have good processes in place. Sales reps were unhappy—and unproductive. With full permission, he met with his sales counterpart. They worked together to establish joint goals, defined what a qualified lead was, and implemented a nurturing process.  The aligned their vision and goals. It changed everything. The cost to acquire a lead dropped from $150 to $65. They went from less than 50% lead follow-up to over 90%. Lead leakage was lowered to less than 10%. That is the power of discipline and goal alignment.  Christopher confidently stated, “If you put your minds together and look forward in the same direction, and have joint goals, you can do anything”.  Resources & People Mentioned Calendly James Obermayer Lori Richardson Connect with Christopher Ryan LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Critical thinking skills are an imperative attribute if you want to become a productive and successful salesperson. Why are they important? What does a productive salesperson look like? Today’s guest, Deb Calvert, answers these questions—and more—in this episode of Sales Reinvented. Deb has been in the sales industry for 15 years and is the President of People First Productivity Solutions. Their goal is to build organizational strength by putting people first. She is a certified executive coach, author, and one of the most influential women in the world of business. Listen to this episode of Sales Reinvented for her unique insight and knowledge of the industry! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Deb Calvert joins Paul in this episode! [1:03] What is productivity? [2:00] Why aren’t salespeople productive? [3:15] How to improve day-to-day effectiveness [4:35] Attributes that make a productive salesperson [6:05] Tools and strategies to increase productivity  [8:40] Top 3 Do’s and top 3 don'ts [11:00] Deb’s favorite productivity story E = O (Effort equals Opportunity) Productivity is about the ability to generate, create, and complete goals and it must lead to revenue production. Being a productive salesperson also means producing new ideas and creating relationships. If you aren’t able to produce the desired results, then you are not reaching your potential as a salesperson.  Being productive isn’t just being busy—it’s about being effective and driving a result.  Deb’s #1 rule of selling is E = O, in other words: “the amount of effort you put into any activity should be directly proportionate to the opportunity associated with that activity.'' She points out that the “big fish” should get more of your attention than the minnow. Deb notes that you need to be mindful of what you spend your time on and be sure it’s proportional to the effort you put in. Delegate and automate whatever isn’t essential Deb iterates that you must change your mindset. You can’t be stuck in the dark ages and refuse to use the technology available to you. Likewise, you must delegate whatever is not essential to the act of selling. Don’t fall trap to the mentality that only you can do something right—train others to take over non-essential responsibilities.  Be willing to set up software and applications that liberate your time. Save that precious time and utilize it only for activities that produce sales. For example, Deb embraces ‘Calendly’ to manage her schedule. She opens up time in a schedule that she has blocked for appointments, and allows her prospects to schedule at a time convenient to them. This saves her the hassle of emailing back and forth to nail down a time. Why critical thinking skills are essential  The #1 attribute that Deb believes a productive salesperson must have is critical thinking. You have to be able to make smart and calculated decisions about where to spend your time and energy. The ability to think critically gives you the power to cut through the noise and distractions. It allows you to be more discerning.  Deb is always looking for more effective ways to carry out tasks. If you have the necessary critical thinking skills required you’ll be able to discern what moves you need to take. Listen to the whole episode—Deb suggests some resources to hone your critical thinking skills that you won’t want to miss! Deb’s top productivity tips Deb has some favorite tools and strategies that she was kind enough to share:  Crystal Knows: this is a personality profiling assessment tool that you can use to look at someone’s LinkedIn and other social media profiles (anything available on the internet) and gives you a snapshot of their personality. This can help you gauge whether or not to be more direct with someone, how to communicate, and so forth.  Stop multitasking & start time-blocking: Deb points out that less than 3% of people can do quality work shifting between tasks. Instead, block similar activities or tasks together and focus on them until they’re completed. Work on what you don’t like: a little bit of front-end preparation and knocking out the hard things first allows you to focus on the goals that you’re reaching.  Experiment and find what works for you: there are so many strategies out there. Deb notes that you can’t be afraid to play around with different suggestions and find what works best for you—then stick with it. To hear Deb’s favorite productivity story and other resources she shares, listen to this episode now! Resources & People Mentioned Crystal People First Productivity Solutions on YouTube The Sales Experts Channel Connect with Deb Calvert LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Bill McCormick has learned to leverage LinkedIn lead generation in a way that is both productive and efficient. In a world where it’s easy to get lost in social media and get distracted by shiny things, how does he stay focused? How does he use LinkedIn as a social selling tool and not a hindrance? Find out in this episode of Sales Reinvented! Bill McCormick and his wife launched their Digital Sales Course in 2017—geared towards helping businesses leverage LinkedIn to build relationships. Now, he is the VP and LinkedIn Strategist for Social Sales Link. He’s become a master of social selling tactics. He joins Paul to lend his expertise. Don’t miss it! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Bill McCormick joins Paul! [1:10] What is productivity? [1:45] Why aren’t sales professionals productive? [3:40] Steps to improve day-to-day productivity [5:30] Attributes of a productive salesperson [6:40] Tools, tactics, and strategies to increase productivity [9:00] Top 3 Do’s and Top 3 Don’ts [11:50] Bill’s favorite productivity story A lack of productivity is akin to being busy and broke According to Bill, “We need to put systems in place to be consistent with activities that will lead to desired outcomes”. If you’re a sales professional, that means making sales, signing contracts, and having money in your pocket. If you aren’t doing those things, you’re the equivalent of busy and broke.  Bill points out that there are more productivity tools available than ever before, but unless you use them properly, they just become further distractions. So how do you refocus? How do you make the switch from doing busywork to engaging in productive work? Improve day-to-day productivity by implementing systems Bill’s answer is to implement systems to obtain sales goals. He quoted James Clear, saying that “We don’t rise to the level of our goals, we fall to the level of our systems”. Salespeople are good at setting lofty goals, but productivity will suffer if they don’t have steps in place to reach those goals.  For example, Bill shares some tips from his daily morning routine. His job is selling social selling to other companies (his speciality is LinkedIn). So every day he checks his LinkedIn notifications. He looks to see who looked at his profile or interacted with his content. He makes connections, all the while keeping his end goal in mind.  You must have boldness, persistence, and tenacity to be a productive and effective sales professional. Bill points out that without those attributes, you’ll make it a nanosecond in the sales world.  The largest enemy of a sales professional is inconsistency Bill further breaks down his systems strategy by setting daily goals that you carry out consistently. You need to get into a rhythm, a cadence. Above all, he points out you shouldn’t wing it. Don’t start your day saying, “Hmm, maybe I’ll do this today”. Write down the goals you want to achieve that day and break them down into manageable chunks. Bill prefers to set timers for various activities so he devotes a set amount of time for each thing without getting distracted. He does the same things consistently, day in and day out.  Always ask the question, “What system can I put in place to reach my daily goals?”. Do you do cold-calling? Do you have a system in place to obtain phone numbers and contacts? How will you make those calls? If you nail down each step of your process and create a system, you will become more productive.  Leveraging lead generation on LinkedIn It’s no secret that Bill is passionate about LinkedIn, after all—he’s made a career of it. When he and his wife first launched their business, they were looking for the best way to get in front of decision-makers. What Bill found was that Linked in was like having someone’s Rolodex. An endless list of connections, online, completely free. They started making connections and reaching out to businesses on LinkedIn. 30-35% of those communications led to an appt. Of that percentage, they closed 30-40% of those meetings. Bill calculated last year that approximately $450,000 of their closed sales were leads generated on LinkedIn.  LinkedIn was the key to their success. It can be your greatest productivity tool with the right systems and cadence in place. To hear their full conversation, make sure to listen to the whole episode! Resources & People Mentioned Atomic Habits by James Clear LinkedIn Connect with Bill McCormick LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Cultivating personal productivity is something that takes practice and persistence. You must be disciplined and have the drive it takes to reach your goals. How do you learn where to focus your energy? What activities and processes should be front and center? Dionne Mischler joins Paul in this episode of Sales Reinvented to share her opinion on productivity.  Dionne is the founder and CEO of Inside Sales by Design and specializes in helping clients achieve their goals. She is passionate about sales and driving results and outcomes. With over two decades of sales experience, her insight is a welcome addition to this episode! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Dionne Mischler Joins Paul. [0:45] What is productivity? [1:10] Why is productivity important? [2:10] Why aren’t salespeople productive? [3:20] Hone and own your craft [5:00] Success is about mindset [6:10] The value of pen and paper [7:30] Top 3 do’s and don’ts [9:10] Dionne’s favorite productivity story  Discipline and Focus are crucial to personal productivity Salespeople have a bad rep for being “ADD” and jumping from one shiny object to another. But successful sales professionals are disciplined and focused. They follow Dionne’s definition of productivity: being engaged in the right activities at the right time with the right intention. Dionne points out that things will come up that you want to run by product or marketing—but that they don’t need to be done now. Focus your energy and stay engaged in selling activities for the right length of time. Only then should you attend to other tasks. Owning and honing your craft Dionne points out that If you work in sales, closing a deal is glorified. The arrival mentality. What’s not focused on is the blood, sweat, and tears that go into a customer saying “yes”. There’s pre-call planning, rehearsing and proactive. You have to educate the customer on your product and advocate for its usefulness.  Dionne notes that “people don’t see the sweat equity that goes into making it look effortless.''  To hone your craft and get to the point where your prospects consistently say yes, you must invest in career development. Dionne recommends choosing a skill every month and focus on improving that skill. You get to decide if you’ll become the next-level professional by the time you’re willing to invest to get there.  Pen and paper drive productivity Dionne advocates for utilizing pen and paper as a productivity tool. They don’t run out of batteries and serve up endless distractions. There is value in sitting down with a blank page and sketching out a plan for the future. What are your goals for the year? The next quarter? What about the upcoming month or next day? She has her clients sit down and go through this process as well. Dionne believes it helps develop the right mindset and lays out a plan for productivity. If you pinpoint a theme you want to carry throughout the year it can make a huge impact.  You can’t soar with the eagles if you’re hanging out with turkeys  Dionne points out that iron sharpens iron. Don’t engage with people who don’t sharpen you or push you towards greatness. Sure you can hang out with coworkers or have the occasional lunch with a friend. But focus on developing relationships that drive you to be better at what you do. Be intentional with all of your time and the activities you invest that time in. After all, you can’t soar with the eagles if you’re hanging out with the turkeys. To hear Dionne’s top 3 productivity do’s and top 3 don'ts as well as her favorite story, listen to the whole episode now. Connect with Dionne Mischler Inside Sales by Design LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts   LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Productivity measurement begins with a plan. Productivity is what you achieve from what you’ve planned. You need to be able to get done what you set out to do. So how do you begin to plan? What steps should a sales professional take? Luigi Prestinenzi joins Paul to share how he continues to increase his productivity.  Luigi is the Co-Founder & Head of Growth at Sales IQ Group and hosts the SalesIQ Podcast, based in Melbourne, Australia. He is a coach and consultant who aims to help businesses unlock the full potential of their sales team. To hear his take on productivity and what you can do to improve your sales, listen to the whole episode! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Paul introduces Luigi Prestinenzi. [1:15] What is productivity?  [1:50] Why is productivity important in sales? [3:30] Why aren’t salespeople productive?  [5:15] Steps to take to improve productivity [8:00] Attributes a salesperson should have [10:40] Productivity tools and tactics [12:15] Top 3 do’s and top 3 don’ts [13:50] Luigi’s favorite productivity story Salespeople are paid to deliver an outcome It’s simple. If a sales professional isn’t doing their job and closing sales, the business suffers. A salesperson is only as good as the last month of the billing period. There is a lot of turnover in sales because they hold the most visible position that is held accountable when they’re not productive.  If they aren’t reaching goals or making quotas, then what are they doing?  There are only so many hours in the day and Luigi points out that you must protect the limited time you have. A salesperson must learn how to focus on the tasks that reach the desired outcome. What are the metrics you need to achieve? What do you need to start tracking? You can’t achieve what you don’t measure.  What can productivity measurement teach you? The world lives in an age of distraction. Every smart-phone notification distracts you from the tasks you need to be focusing on. Social media can be a great asset or your greatest hindrance. Don’t get lost in a sea of communication that won’t deliver the outcome you’re looking for.  Luigi states that 50-60% of sales teams are unable to reach sales targets.  So how do you change that? Start tracking your performance. What are you doing when you’re being productive and actively closing sales? What were you doing then that you aren’t doing now? Know the tasks you need to do, schedule them in your calendar, and complete them. It requires discipline.  To be a high-performing salesperson you must be proactive A successful salesperson holds themselves accountable to the goals they’ve set. Many people don’t hold themselves accountable, and instead, they try and justify their actions with excuses. Luigi points out that finding success is hard, and if you don’t protect your time as your greatest asset, you won’t be productive. Working harder, longer is not the answer. So what is? Luigi states you need to get some productivity tools in place. Start using Calendly to schedule meetings and eliminate the back-and-forth of calendar volley-ball. You get to choose where people can schedule meetings. Use Seamless.ai to build lists for prospecting.  Do you want to hear the rest of Luigi’s productivity hacks? Listen to the whole episode! Prospecting is a key component in achieving success in sales  Luigi is a strong advocate for prospecting and believes it’s fundamental to a sales professionals’ success. If prospecting is your weakness, you must spend time improving your abilities. Luigi points out a few key things that can help: Know your persona Know how many touch points you need over a period of time Develop communication templates Create a process that you can automate as much as possible To be productive you must stop starting over and doing everything from scratch, every time. Templates allow you to be more efficient! Luigi shares some powerful strategies in this episode. Don’t miss it! Resources & People Mentioned Tony Hughes Blog Seamless.ai SalesLoft AutoClose Connect with Luigi LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Emotional literacy—sometimes also referred to as self-awareness—is the ability to appropriately understand and express your feelings. It is key to becoming a productive sales professional. Why? Understanding your emotions and what keeps you from being a successful salesperson gives you the steps to move in a positive direction. Here to talk with Paul about emotional literacy and sales call reluctance is Connie Kadansky. She is the president of Exceptional Sales Performance and a notable coach in the industry, specializing in sales call reluctance. If you’re ready to overcome what’s holding you back and become a productive and effective professional—don’t miss this one! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Paul introduces Connie Kadansky. [1:20] What is productivity? [1:40] Why is being productive important? [2:00] Why aren’t sales professionals productive? [3:10] Steps to improve productivity [5:40] Attributes of a salesperson [7:30] Productivity tools and strategies [9:30] Top 3 do’s and top 3 don’ts [13:55] Favorite productivity story Sales call reluctance and its impact on productivity Connie’s definition of productivity is “aligning and integrating all activities with the salesperson’s goals and the goals of the company”. If a sales professional is struggling with productivity and unable to reach their goals—they’re not aligned with the goals of the company. So, why aren’t they productive? Connie points out that it is often tied to sales call reluctance. Sales call reluctance is an emotional hesitation to prospect. She recommends facing the reluctance head-on. There is always a purpose to the emotion, but you must learn how to identify and navigate those emotions to become productive.  Keep listening as Connie and Paul discuss steps to improve productivity and attributes of a productive sales professional.  Emotional literacy and other tools for success Emotional literacy and sales reluctance go hand-in-hand. You must face the emotions that are holding you back from prospecting—not ignore them. When you accept the emotion for what it is, then you can decide to move into a more productive emotion.  Connie points out that it becomes much easier when you acknowledge that the sale isn’t about you. You are offering a potential client a product or system that will offer them value! She also notes that finding an accountability buddy can be instrumental in reaching your goals. In fact, your chances of achieving a goal go up to 72% if you have someone to keep you accountable. Connie’s top tips to become more productive Connie’s top 5 tips to become a more productive sales professional include: Take on call reluctance head-on! Use scorecards: Score yourself on activities, because whatever you measure, improves.  Learn how to center yourself; don’t waste time transitioning from activity to activity. Don’t go to lunch with colleagues—go with prospects! Or anyone you can learn from.  Learn how to say an “enlightened no”. Say no to things you know will distract you and sidetrack your day.  To hear more details about Connie’s tips make sure you listen to the full episode! How to assess your priorities A great quote from Jim Collin’s reads “If you have more than 3 priorities, then you don’t have any priorities”. Connie took this quote to heart, and wrote out a lost of her top priorities—and came up with twenty-seven. Knowing she needed to narrow this list down, she asked herself three questions:  What is the most important task? What is most urgent? What priorities have deadlines?  Once you have narrowed down your tasks to three works in progress, an effective way to knock them out is by chunking out the work. Break the tasks down into manageable steps and be disciplined enough to carry them out. Planning and prioritizing can make all the difference. To hear more of Connie’s advice, tips, and strategies, listen to the whole episode of Sales Reinvented! Resources & People Mentioned The Unopened Book by Dan Newby and Lucy Nunez Good to Great by Jim Collins Sales Call Reluctance by Connie Kadansky Connect with Connie Kadansky Connie’s Website 602-997-1101 LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
If you’re a sales professional and know you need to place importance on prioritizing tasks and becoming productive, this is the place to start! Are you ready to gain focus on what’s important and start closing more sales? Paul’s guest, Liz Heiman, lays out where to place your priorities, and how to become a productive salesperson.  Liz is the Chief Strategy Officer and Sales Leadership Coach at Alice Heiman, LLC. She is passionate about helping businesses maximize their full potential by increasing profitability. She enjoys strategizing plans for growth and success. Liz lends her expertise in this eye-opening episode of the Sales Reinvented Podcast! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Paul introduces Liz Heiman [1:00] What is productivity? [1:35] Why is productivity important? [2:20] Why aren’t salespeople productive? [5:30] Steps to improve productivity? [7:20] Attributes of a productive salesperson [8:20] Tools, strategies, and tactics [10:00] Top 3 productivity do’s and top 3 don’ts [11:45] Liz’s favorite productivity Story Clear leadership and expectations are key to productivity According to Liz, productivity is the act of prioritizing tasks and being efficient at carrying them out. Sales professionals can get distracted and lose focus without clear priorities and plans in place. It can also be difficult to be productive when leadership pulls you in different directions. If you’re in sales management, you need to allow your sales team to do what they do best: close sales.  Management needs to focus on running interference and allowing salespeople to stay on-task. In larger companies, this could be mitigated with the established of a sales enablement team. If you don’t have the means to create this team you must be thoughtful about expectations. Perhaps you can implement systems to limit unnecessary workload. Above all, don’t change the strategy for your sales team and leave them reeling and frustrated. Enable them to do their jobs to the best of their ability.  Prioritizing Tasks: start with your funnel It is almost instinct for any professional to get to work and immediately check their email. It becomes the thing that controls us and steals our time. Liz points out that this is NOT the first task you should be engaging in. It is important to be responsive to customers. However, if you prioritize email, you never get to the things that are important and only deal with the things that are urgent.  Liz recommends diving into your CRM. Be sure you are entering data and keeping it up to date—even if you hate it. Look at your reports, get yourself organized, then dive into your funnel. Start by closing the sales at the end of the funnel, then work your way backward and follow up on leads. Don’t let them get cold. Leverage the power of the funnel to prioritize your day.  A productive salesperson needs to start with a vision Liz points out that an important attribute of a sales professional is the ability to see the end of the road before they take their first step. An efficient person cannot just react, respond, and wing it. They need to ask themselves where their energy should be spent. What roadblocks may come up? Can they close on this sale? They must plan around the things that get them results. If they can’t envision the end result—closing the sale—how can they work backwards and plan each step? Recognize the power of planning Liz completely understands the power of planning. She feels lost and disorganized without it. Years ago, she was taught how to properly map out her time. She blocked time in her schedule for prospecting, calls to make, projects to complete, etc. This gave her the framework she needed to make deadlines and move sales forward. If she didn’t utilize this strategy, she found herself floundering. She’d look at her week and question what, if anything, she got done. She recommends planning out your time so that you don’t lose track of the priorities or miss deadlines. A lack of planning creates more stress. And if you want time to play, you have to get your work done! For a full picture of Liz’s strategies and tactics, listen to the whole episode of Sales Reinvented! Resources & People Mentioned Alice Heiman LLC Connect with Liz Heiman LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Mastering productivity management is a stellar way for salespeople to become more effective in their jobs. Learning strategies to manage and foster your productivity can take you to a new level of success. Paul’s guest today, Lisa Magnuson, shares what she believes is the key to being productive and successfully—and repeatedly—landing clients. After years of experience in the sales industry, Lisa founded Top Line Sales in 2005. She is the author of multiple best-selling books on sales and one of the most effective coaches in the industry. Her business prides itself on helping you land seven-figure deals and cultivating a sales process that is productive, efficient, and effective.  Outline of This Episode [1:10] Lisa Magnuson’s definition of productivity [2:35] Why aren’t salespeople productive? [5:40] Attributes or characteristics of a great salesperson [7:45] Productivity tools and tactics [10:30] Top 3 do’s and top 3 don’ts [12:35] Favorite productivity story Productivity management begins with effectiveness A salesperson can often be efficient—they send emails and make phone calls in a timely manner. But the work means nothing if you are not effective. If your effort doesn’t result in securing meetings (or the eventual sale) then you are not being productive. So how does a sales professional forge ahead and foster productivity? How do they begin to land sales? Keep listening for Lisa’s take on the question.  The importance of pre-call planning Lisa recommends a process she calls ‘pre-call planning’ to help boost your effectiveness. In fact, she believes if you aren’t doing pre-call planning, you are incapable of being effective. So what does pre-call planning look like? It begins with setting aside some time to systematically think about where you are in the sales process. What do you want to accomplish? What are the next steps?  What could go wrong? What will make the conversation a great experience for your client? Many salespeople don’t take the time to engage in this process because it is time-consuming. They believe with their expertise and personality that they can wing it and come away with a win. Lisa states that you will be 20% more effective if you implement pre-call planning. You must act with a sense of urgency Lisa operates with a few key philosophies that she’s found to be effective. One of those is how she manages her calendar. She does not let her schedule run her and never schedules back-to-back meetings or phone calls. After each meeting, she invests her time in follow-up actions that were discussed.  If you set aside that time while you are in the right frame of mind, you will knock out much more than if you have to go back hours or even days later to finish up tasks. The sense of urgency allows you to complete tasks as effectively as possible and important things won’t get missed.  To hear her other philosophies on time-management and systems to have in place, listen to the whole episode! SWOT Analysis and Relationship Mapping Lisa’s favorite productivity story relates to a client she worked with last year in the shipbuilding and repair industry. She helped the client do a SWOT analysis (a strategic planning technique to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats). They also did relationship mapping, while implementing other methodologies—it helped her client landed a $40 million contract.  The contract they landed wasn’t even originally interested in working with them! But because of the effort they put forth, the research, and the pre-call planning, they went front a long-shot to a sure thing. Within the first 90 days of working with that client, they referred someone else to work with them! It’s just one of Lisa’s proven strategies for landing sales. Listen to the whole episode for more productivity management strategies and tips! Resources & People Mentioned Top Line Sales Book: The TOP Sales Leader Playbook Book: The TOP Seller Advantage FREE Pre-Call Planning Guide Book: More Sales, Less Time SWOT Analysis Connect with Lisa Magnuson LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
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! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Paul introduces Chris Croft [1:05] What is productivity? [2:30] Why aren’t salespeople productive? [5:10] How to improve day-to-day productivity [9:35] 7 tips to overcome procrastination [13:05] Productivity tools to embrace [17:00] Top 3 Do’s and Top 3 Don’ts [19:50] His favorite productivity story Time management is a core habit sales professionals must develop 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: Red = Key time that you are doing productive things essential to your job. Black = Administrative tasks that you want to minimize. Blue = Things that are forgotten which may include planning, creating, thinking. Anything that is future-based.  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.  Productive habits begin with decluttering the mind 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! 7 ways to beat procrastination 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: Write a task in your planner so your mind isn’t cluttered with trying to recall what you were supposed to do. Leave whatever it is that you need to complete visible on your desk, so it’s not “out of sight, out of mind”.  Break a large task into smaller chunks so it’s easier to complete.  Have a fixed work routine. Perhaps you call 5 people immediately every day. Start the day with whatever is hanging over your head. Make the rest of the day easy. Reward yourself when you knock out a difficult task! Chocolate, anyone? Make sure you’re getting enough sleep! A lack of energy will impact your productivity. 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.  Blurring the lines between work and home is allowed 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.  Resources & People Mentioned Jobs To Do App on Google Play Trello Training on Lynda.com Connect with Chris Croft LinkedIn Twitter Website YouTube Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Following the right productivity tips can make or break your sales performance. When your entire job revolves around generating revenue, it’s important to be as productive as you can be. So what steps do you need to take? If you’re looking for some great tips to propel you in the right direction, this episode of Sales Reinvented is the one for you! Noelle Leemburg joins Paul in this episode to deliver some of her top tips from years of experience. She is a coach, co-author of a book, and an experienced saleswoman. Her enthusiasm, energy, and authentic desire to help others reach their goals shines in this episode. Don’t miss it! Outline of This Episode [1:20] Paul introduces Noelle Leemburg [2:00] Why aren’t salespeople productive? [3:00] How to become more productive [3:45] Improving day-to-day productivity [5:30] Attributes of a great sales professional [6:10] Tools to have in your arsenal [7:40] Top 3 Do’s and top 3 don’ts [11:00] Noelle’s favorite productivity story What keeps sales professionals from being productive? Noelle believes productivity begins with doing impactful tasks effectively and efficiently. The key word is impactful—whatever task you’re doing needs to clearly be working towards generating revenue. So what keeps a salesperson from those tasks? The #1 answer tends to be there are too many things on their plate. If you’re getting tasks sent your way or requests are made of you that fall outside of your role, they need to be set aside. Don’t let “shiny penny syndrome” distract you from what generates revenue.  Improving day-to-day productivity by prioritizing your time So how does a sales professional become more productive? Noelle advocates being protective of your time. She refers to this as “Tiger Time”. You must fiercely protect your schedule. So start tracking where you’re spending your time. Then narrow down what activities you’re doing that are wasting your time. Intentionality is a large part of what makes someone successful. If you know what your quarterly goals are, you can then plan monthly, weekly, and daily tasks to reach those goals. You can take those goals and plan them into your calendar so your precious time is not being wasted.  To hear the attributes Noelle believes a sales professional must cultivate—keep listening! Focus on impactful activities first A goal-oriented and focused salesperson will focus on their most impactful tasks and knock them out first. Noelle helps further define impactful activities by noting it’s the things that make money. This can include—but is not limited to—prospecting, conversations with clients, face-to-face proposals, and phone calls.  Noelle states that one way you can get a leg-up on your day is by coming in 10 minutes early. Investing an extra 10 minutes is an extra 40 hours a year spent in impactful activities. Think of what could be achieved in that extra time! Not everyone is a morning person, so connect with prospects when you’re at your best (even if it’s in the afternoon). Noelle’s top productivity tips Take Noelle’s top tips and make them your own. You’ll begin to take steps towards becoming a more productive sales professional: Plan your work and work your plan. Be organized, build routines, and do the work. Use your energy wisely. Get in front of your prospects when you’re at your best.  Win the morning! Get up early and get a headstart on your day. Eliminate distractions. Checking Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest are NOT hourly tasks. Stop making them important! Stop multitasking. It’s hurting you, not helping. Get into a zone and stick to the task at hand. It’s proven to equate to higher productivity.  Learn to say no to anything that isn’t a high-value task or activity.  Noelle wants sales professionals to focus on What’s Important Now (WIN). If you begin to do that and follow her productivity tips, you will start to win. Don’t miss listening to this whole episode for some great stories and productivity strategies.  Resources & People Mentioned The Authentic Salesperson course Parkinson’s Law Book: The No B.S. Truth Connect with Noelle Leemburg LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Are you ready to improve your sales performance? There are so many factors in play that affect reaching your quota, but something you can easily start to remedy is your productivity. What can you do to drive your progress? How do you improve your productivity? Meridith Elliott Powell answers these questions and more in this episode of Sales Reinvented.  Meridith is a business growth expert, motivational speaker, and successful author. She understands the constantly changing economy and knows how to help you grow your business. One way to accelerate growth is by making sure your salesforce is as productive as possible. Be sure to listen to this episode to hear her advice! Outline of This Episode [1:05] Meridith Elliott Powell on productivity [2:10] Why aren’t they productive? [2:55] How to improve day-to-day productivity [4:30] Attributes of a productive person [6:05] Tools and resources she recommends  [8:00] Top 3 Do’s and top 3 don’ts [9:45] Meridith’s favorite productivity story Don’t romanticize past success Everyone has their own philosophy on the sales process and what works for them. More often than not, those strategies are based on what worked in the past. Meridith states that you must stop living in the past. What worked then won’t always be the best strategy for the here and now.  The marketplace, customer, and competition are constantly changing.  So you must grow and adapt with those changes. Behaviors drive results. So you must decide which ones move you forward. If romanticizing past success is holding you back from reaching your goals, it's time to move on.  Reflection is the best preparation Meridith believes improving day-to-day productivity begins with reflecting over your week. Every Friday, she takes time to look at the last four days. She recommends looking at your emails, phone calls you made, proposals you wrote, and even networking events you attended. What moved the ball forward? What didn’t? You are your efficiency expert. You must be the one to look at your week and make adjustments moving forward. Meridith knows she is more productive when she takes 15-20 minutes to keep herself accountable to move towards her goals. That means eliminating activities that don’t.  The marketing team isn’t working against you Sometimes it’s hard for sales professionals to recognize or admit that the sales process truly begins before salespeople ever connect with a potential customer. Customers Google, they do research, and likely know about your business or product because of your marketing team doing their jobs right. Let marketing do the heavy lifting and provide the data you need. That allows a sales professional to do what they do best—build relationships. Salespeople are the ones who bring emotional intelligence to the process. Remember that the marketing process doesn’t steal your leads, but softens them for the sale.  Don’t fight tools that will help you Meridith loves every part of the sales process. She is very outgoing and loves the thrill of the hunt. Because she was very good at what she did, she fought every tool or resource ever introduced to her. She was meeting her goals, so why did she need them? When forced to implement a system of questions to gather information, she found out how wrong she was. She thought she knew everything about a long-time client. But after she had asked the required questions, she realized she missed important and necessary information. From that moment on, Meridith became a staunch advocate for embracing a CRM and any tools or resources that would propel her towards her goals. The moral of the story? Keep your ego in check. She continued forward and consistently closed $1 million a month in sales. To hear in full detail her productivity process make sure you listen to this episode in its entirety! Resources & People Mentioned Meridith’s Website Connect with Meridith Elliot Powell LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
If you’re ready to move away from destructive habits and become a productive sales professional, where do you start? Are there daily nuisances distracting you and dividing your focus? In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Barb Giamanco joins Paul to help you get down to the root of your struggles and delivers some tips to get you started! Barb Giamanco is the founder and CEO of Social Centered Selling. She’s all about helping salesmen and women find transformation and start reaching sales goals. One of her career goals is to encourage more women to become sales professionals. If you’re looking to jumpstart your sales productivity, listen to this transformative episode! Outline of This Episode [1:05] What is productivity? [1:45] Why is it important? [2:45] Sales Technology: Less is More [6:50] Steps to improve day-to-day productivity [8:45] You NEED to know your numbers [11:50] Top productivity tools [14:45] Top 3 Do’s & Top 3 Don’ts [17:35] Barb’s favorite productivity story When it comes to technology—less is more Barb points out a stunning statistic: Salespeople are only using 15-20% of their time to engage in the sales process. Why? One reason is that companies expect their sales force to be data collectors. But should that really be their job? Probably not. If you’re in a leadership position, Barb advises reducing the administrative duties carried out by your sales staff. She also notes that there is too much focus on a tech stack. Eliminate apps, systems, and tools that don’t integrate well into your CRM. Stop using unnecessary software that makes you constantly shift between platforms. A sales team needs to be allowed to focus on making phone calls, sending emails, and connecting with people on LinkedIn. If something distracts them from that, it’s not worth using.  Knock out what you find most difficult Are you ready to improve day-to-day productivity? According to Barb, it’s all about planning. You must go into every day knowing what you’re going to accomplish. Scheduling time to complete specific tasks is how you drive results. She takes Sunday evenings to plan each day of the upcoming week—and blocks time in her schedule.  She does not let anyone interfere with that time. She advocates protecting your calendar. You need to prioritize your focus on what gets you closest to the cash. One way to do that? Knock out the difficult things first. Stop focusing your time and energy on the easy things that don’t drive results. They can fall into place later—or even be delegated.  You better know your numbers A good salesperson is focused, committed, and carries out the plans they’ve made for their schedule. Because in reality, if things don’t get done, you only have yourself to blame. This is why it’s beyond important to know your metrics. How long does it take you to close a deal? What is the average value of each opportunity? How many opportunities do you need to hit your quota?  Barb has run into many sales professionals who don’t have answers to those questions. There is no excuse!You need to know on average how many calls, appointments, demos, etc. will get you to a sale. Take ownership and learn your numbers. Barb’s top suggestions to be successful Here are Barb’s top tips: Eliminate distractions: Expounding on the “less is more” philosophy, one of Barb’s “Do’s” is eliminating unnecessary distractions. Remove all non-essential apps from your phone. Turn off notifications that drag you away from work you need to be focusing on.  Block similar activities: Do batch work for sales activities. You will be more productive when you aren’t shifting focus from one task to another.  Use Templates for personalized outreach: Take advantage of templates that you create that can be used for personalized outreach. It will take some research, but gives you a handy framework. Being a successful salesperson involves knowing how to solve the problem of your target market and offering them the solution. It takes time and diligence to learn how to do this well. Becoming more productive is one of the best things you can implement to become more effective.  Resources & People Mentioned Barb’s Book: The New Handshake Hubspot Connect with Barb Giamanco Social Centered Selling Barb’s Personal Website LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
Everyone uses a different productivity process in their daily work, but some maximize it more than others. If you’re ready to move beyond just completing checklists and want to efficiently generate revenue, you need to focus on productivity. So what should that look like? Scott Ingram—Account Director at Relationship One and host of TWO podcasts—is here to chat with Paul about the process of productivity. Scott has a lot on his plate but manages to handle everything efficiently and effectively. How does he do it? Listen to this episode of Sales Reinvented to find out! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Paul introduces Scott Ingram. [1:00] What is productivity? [2:45] Eliminate the “endless scroll” [4:55] The 4P productivity process for producing profit [8:45] A great salesperson must embody a maniacal focus [12:10] Be minimalist with the tools you use [13:55] Top 3 Do’s and Don’ts [15:00] Scott’s favorite productivity story Overcome the distraction of the “endless scroll” Scott defines productivity as “the amount of meaningful work you can get done in a given period of time”. What does meaningful work mean? Anything that pushes you towards generating revenue. How much revenue can you generate in one hour of meaningful work? If you’re questioning the level of meaningful work you’re able to knock out, it might be time to eliminate some distractions. Scott notes that the world of technology seems to be conspiring against us. You get notifications from your email, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn—the list is endless. Everyone knows it’s easy to get sucked into the rabbit-hole. Technology promises efficiency and delivers distraction. Scott recommends becoming more vigilant with your time. Leverage technology, don’t let it leverage you. Keep listening to find out what that looks like.  Scott’s 4P Productivity Process for Producing Profit Scott recently gave a presentation on productivity and was kind enough to summarize it (for the full walk-through of the topic, we’ve linked it in the resources below). If you’re ready to improve day-to-day productivity, consider this process: Purge: Get rid of unnecessary distractions. Turn off app notifications and unsubscribe from emails crowding your inbox. Set a foundation for your day.  Process and Plan: Develop a system that works for you. Put a checklist in place that covers your calendar, your pipeline, territory or whatever it is that contributes to meaningful work.  Prioritize: What are you actually able to get done? What needs to get done now versus later?  Perform: With the other 3 steps in place, go out and execute. Be consistent with the first three P’s and things will begin to fall into place. Do you have the maniacal focus required to be successful? The Oxford dictionary defines the word ‘Maniacal’ in its non-formal sense as someone “exhibiting or denoting obsessive enthusiasm”. Scott believes this is the #1 attribute of a great sales professional. Do they have the obsessive drive and focus needed to be the top salesperson in your company? Scott runs a podcast in which he only interviews the top-performing sales professional in any given company (or top 1%). These men and women have proven to be the best of the best and have mastered the productivity process.  He gives an amazing example of someone who is 200% more productive than the second-best salesperson in his organization—listen to hear his story! It pays to be a minimalist When asked what tools individuals could use to increase productivity, Scott noted that it is better to be a minimalist. Keep it simple. A few tools that are a given include Gmail and your calendar. Scott also enjoys using: Evernote: A note-taking app that helps you stay effortly organized. Todoist: an App Scott likes that helps you organize tasks and schedule deadlines to keep you on-task. Brain.fm: Music that claims to improve focus and therefore productivity.  Inbox Pause: an extension that stops emails from entering your inbox until you want them to.  Above all, it’s about developing a process that you can execute consistently. To hear Scott’s top three “Do’s and Don’ts” make sure to listen to the whole episode! Resources & People Mentioned The 4P Productivity Process for Producing Profit Sales Success Stories Podcast Inspired Marketing Podcast Evernote Todoist Brain.fm Inbox Pause Connect with Scott Ingram LinkedIn Twitter Email: scott(at)top1.fm Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK https://www.podcastfasttrack.com
How can the average sales professional leverage their time to maximize their sales productivity? There doesn’t seem to be enough time in the day to get everything done and manage to meet their sales quotas. In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Brynne Tillman is here to share what productivity looks like for her.  Brynne is the CEO of Social Sales Link and has mastered the art of marketing and sales on LinkedIn. She’s transforming the way professionals grow their business by taking social media sales to a whole new level. Her unique insight into the social world will leave an impact on you—so don’t miss this episode! Outline of This Episode [0:20] Paul introduces Brynne Tillman. [1:20] What is productivity? [3:30] How can a salesperson improve day-to-day? [6:00] Characteristics of a productive person [8:15] Tools, tactics, and strategies to put in place [11:30] Top 3 Do’s and Don’ts [14:20] Favorite Productivity Story Do what you love—and everything in-between Brynne points out that the average salesperson usually has an engaging personality. They can be charming, can build relationships quickly, and excel at small talk. But they don’t always know how to make the best use of their time. Many focus on the aspects of the job that they love but struggle to engage in the part of the process that converts to money. So how does one remedy that?  Start by identifying what you love and excel at. Then identify the gaps—where do you struggle or lack confidence? Schedule time to learn and begin to excel at the items on your to-do list that are a downfall. Get organized, schedule everything, and find someone to keep you accountable to do those things.  Maximizing sales productivity day-to-day Brynne’s number one tip? Live and die by your calendar. Schedule everything from meetings to simple follow-up calls. If you don’t schedule it, you’ll likely forget it. She recommends a nifty tool, Boomerang for Gmail. You can mark certain emails to get moved to the top of your inbox at specific dates and times. It’s one of her favorite productivity tools.  Not everyone is gifted with the traits needed to be project managers, yet we are all project managers. She recommends making small behavioral changes. If you’ve already identified what you don’t excel at, don’t shout it to the world. Don’t let your negative words become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Instead, be open to learning, growing, changing, and adapting.  You aren’t a real company until you incorporate a CRM! A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System is something Brynne strongly believes every business needs to have in place to be productive and profitable. Don’t underestimate the usefulness of a great system—it can be your biggest productivity asset. They usually incorporate tools to give you reminders and help keep you on task for every step of the sales process.  Find the right tech that supports the habits of a salesperson. It doesn’t have to be expensive. Brynne recommends Nimble as an affordable CRM for any business to start with. Her favorite CRM is SharpString, which has a Chrome plugin you can integrate to keep you on task.  For more tools, tactics, and strategies—listen to the whole episode! Stay in front of your prospects Bookmarks are something that everyone is familiar with and uses to some extent, but Brynne takes it to the next level. As she comes across connections or prospects on LinkedIn, she’ll add their information into a bookmark folder. At any given time she could have up to 80 people added into the folder. If she comes across an interesting blog post or article, she’ll open every single one of the profiles that are saved in the bookmark. She writes a short but personal note and sends the article their way. It’s a unique way to provide value and allows her to stay at the forefront of their minds.  It’s a genius way to leverage the tools available. She landed a new client within 20 minutes of giving the tactic a shot. Don’t be afraid to try something new and innovative, you never know if it will help you land your next customer! Resources & People Mentioned Boomerang for Gmail Nimble CRM SharpSpring CRM Calendly Connect with Brynne Tillman Social Sales Link LinkedIn Twitter Connect With Paul Watts  LinkedIn Twitter Subscribe to SALES REINVENTED Audio Production and Show notes by PODCAST FAST TRACK
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