- Do you currently set aside time on your calendar to talk to prospects?
- Do you have a connection strategy that includes a sales process?
- Do you avoid this time on your calendar at all costs?
As the brilliant Sales Mentor, Carolyn Herfurth says, “If you’re in business, you’re in sales”. It cannot be avoided. Or you will be out of business before you start.
But KNOWING this intellectually and taking actions that allow you to ACT on it are two very different things. Blocking time on your calendar to make those calls or have that cup of coffee with a prospective client is critical.
During this series, we will definitely be taking time to discuss the strategy behind networking time on your calendar and the time management secrets behind connect with people. But what we are talking about here is different.
Time blocked on your calendar for SALES should be used to make calls, follow up with people you met at events, conducting renewal conversations with your current clients, asking for referrals and introductions, talking about your business and ASKING people to work with you. You heard me… ASKING people to work with you.
I stumbled here when I first started…. I was not asking people to work with me. I was not giving them an option to move forward and allow me to help them. It was pretty darn selfish of me. But even more importantly, it kept me perpetuating a circle of: “reach out” ==> “have great conversation” ==> “agree what a fabulous conversation this is” ==> “good bye/until we speak again” ==> “hmmm I need clients” ==> “reach out to another person” and the this went on and on. I was connecting. I was talking to so many people. But it was not sales.
When I made two shifts in calendar – everything started to change in this area of my business.
- I put a sign in my office space that said “How many people have you asked to work with you today?” My answer- 6 days a week- must never be ZERO! And then placed a reminder in my calendar each day to determine the answer to this question.
- Easiest way I found to achieve an answer I love to the question above is to block time on my calendar EACH DAY (for me, I focus on 6 days a week but sometimes it is 7). The time on my calendar says SALES. Not connecting, not follow up, not networking, not calling people. It says SALES time. There is something about using that word that focuses me. Different from the very important networking time. This is a time that I am focused on finding people I can help and asking if I can help them.
Now I am not a sales expert in ANY way. This is simply from my own experience stemming from my personal madness with this issue and the challenges my clients have faced. Having the time blocked on my calendar each day to make calls and reach out to people motivates me and more importantly, focuses me on what I planned to use that block of time for…. Talking about my business and engaging potential clients.
And remember when you blocked off Client Time on our calendars and you probably had some extra time set aside for the clients you want but do not have yet? Use that time to pick up the phone and speak to people. Use that time for SALES until you have a strong pipeline and a full practice/client base.