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It’s the beginning of a new year. Rise to the occasion and ring in a New You with the New Year! A New Year marks the point for a fresh start. Make sure you start it off right and pave your pathway to a Successful Sales Year.

During January’s Sales Training Teleconference, Brian Nolan and Jim Falk highlighted key items that all Sales People should practice throughout the year. Below are the critical factors Brian and Jim discussed to achieve a successful year of selling.

Understand Your Numbers

“Begin with the end in mind.” Work backward. Know where you want to go; know what success looks like; then, figure out what you need to do to get there. Use a Cookbook to set weekly, monthly, and yearly goals. Then, continue to reflect back to the workbook and keep track of where you stand against your goals. In order to do this, there are 3 numbers you need to know:

  1. Top End Goal
  2. Average Job Size
  3. Closing % Average

You’ll need to do a little bit of math, but knowing these numbers will make you feel a lot closer to that Success finish line.

Journal and Improve

Choose 2 or 3 areas where improvement could be needed, and write them down. Then, after every sales call or appointment, take 2 minutes to reflect on how you did. Focus on these areas for just a few weeks, and they will begin to come naturally to you.

Learn to Set Closing Appointments

One behavior you MUST have to succeed in Sales is having a clear future with a Closing Appointment, with a Yes or a No. You need to get an answer – that is close! Consider what you could learn by getting an answer – vice versa, consider what you missed out on learning by not getting an answer. Try including the Closing Appointment when you are Setting the Table. Letting the customer know, from the beginning, that it is part of your process helps to take the pressure off.

Be Okay with NO

When someone tells you No, it is not in response to you as a person. In this business, a No is usually a Price Objection, or a response to your product/services – it’s part of the job. Don’t take it personally. You’re not going to get every job, and you, probably, don’t want every job. However, you do want to close every job. So, there are 4 positive outcomes you can get from an estimate or lead:

  1. Yes
  2. No
  3. Clear cut future – i.e. scheduled Closing Appointment
  4. Lesson Learned
Identity/Role

The I.R. Interaction of a Sales Rep cannot be understated! It defines your success! Your Identity is how you think and feel. Your Role is your behaviors, actions, and results. It is important to understand that they are different and you must separate them. To be sure to keep them separate, set specific goals for each. Then, make sure to not only write these goals down but say them out loud! By saying things out-loud and repeating them, you establish new neuropathways and you can literally reprogram your brain! So, go ahead – talk to yourself!

Structured Meetings

A good meeting always has a PAL: Purpose, Agenda, and Length. Having structured meetings keeps you focused and on track of what is important. If there is an area that needs improvement, shine some light on it and have routine, structured meetings around it! Structured meetings also include scheduled meetings with yourself, a.k.a. “Focus Time”. Regularly schedule yourself time to plan – plan for the week, the month, the year, etc.

Business Development

You can’t grow or develop your business without driving new leads. In order to do that, you need to have contact with the outside world. Get involved in something new! Find something you like where there will be people and things that will help you to further develop your business.

Add Hours to Your Day

Find an efficient Estimating System. There are plenty of Systems out there, just find one that is easy for you to use and works well with your company’s processes. Implementing an efficient Estimating System can shave hours of extra work off your day.

AWO System

Companies who use Additional Work Orders (AWOs), but do not have a system around them, typically only get about 3% of their revenue from AWO’s. However, companies who have a focused, enforced AWO System typically get about 8%-10% of their revenue from AWOs! A successful AWO System simply requires incentives and goals for your Crew Leaders. Give your Crew Leaders a goal, and an incentive to reach it, and they will start selling.

For many Sales Reps, it’s easy to fall into bad behaviors. Resist being like the “New Year’s Resolution Gym-Goers” – people who make their resolution to step up their gym routine, but only make it there for the first 3 weeks in January. Instead, let’s make this a year of continuity and routine. This year, continue to reflect, continue to improve and continue to climb your way to a successful Sales Person.

All the best!

Amanda Kearney

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