For sales people, ‘To Do Lists’ are not a useful tool in today’s hectic, information-rich, competitive business environments. Here’s an alternative:
1. Spend 10 minutes every morning planning the day!
We know it makes sense – but we rarely do it properly. Spending just 10 minutes in the morning reviewing our main business objectives and personal goals, then physically writing out a maximum of 3 or 4 results (not tasks!) we want to absolutely achieve by the end of the day, is essential for keeping us focused. Just as important, is the reason WHY we want to achieve the result i.e. what it will mean to us personally (£) as well as professionally – this keeps motivation high when times get challenging.
2. Learn the art of the 80/20 Principle!
According to Pareto’s famous law, most of us spend 80% of our time working on things that will only ever give us 20% of the results we’re looking for. This includes: doing tasks others have passed to us; trying to clear a ‘To Do List’ (because it makes us feel a sense of achievement); and avoiding difficult tasks by distracting ourselves watching news and/or unimportant emails etc. Instead, try prioritizing during the 10 minute planning sessions, batching up similar or related tasks, and delegating or simply deleting more ‘stuff’ – remember simplicity and clarity is power.
3. Spend 10 minutes after work reviewing the day!
It’s easy to get so engrossed in our businesses that we forget to take time out to reflect. By investing just 10 minutes at the end of the day to recap on what we’ve achieved, what we’ve learnt and any great moments we experienced, we stay more motivated. We’re also able to switch off before returning home to connect with family and friends – the basic human need that should be behind why we do what we do in the first place.