Often our productivity is damaged by myths of “hard work.” Are you one of those “first one in, last one out” people at your office. If so, you are probably wondering how everyone else is beating your pants of in sales numbers.
That’s right…I am guessing you spend most of your days dreading long marathons of calls or mundane tasks. I am going to reveal to you those other guys secrets-turn your day into a series of sprints, not marathons.
The first step in designing your day as a series of sprints is to “time block.” This is a very simple concept of allocating specific blocks of time in your day for very specific task types.
For example, give yourself a period of time for outbound calling, another for returning calls, and yet another for reading and responding to email. These are all tasks that tend to interrupt the flow of other more strategic, but often more important tasks.
Time blocking typical interruptions can keep you focused and stress free, as other tasks disappear from your TO DO list.
Now it is time to sprint. Sprints should be built into your time blocking schedule. For a sales person this often means outbound calling sprints. Here are some basic rules of sprints:
- Shut-off distractions
- Start and stop on time
- Keep them short (30 min)
Maximizing the effectiveness of these sprints requires them to be tightly managed. That means, shut-off all other distractions (i.e., email, Twitter, Facebook, Blackberry, etc.).
In addition, they must be started and stopped on time-no bleeding into other time blocks. This discipline will also help to motivate digging into the calls, knowing you only have a short amount of time to produce some results.
In between sprints you need to maximize those breaks. Take some time to learn something new, process your inbox, update your TO DO list, do some research-make it less intense, but productive.
Don’t Get Distracted!
Most importantly in using the sprint strategy is the principle of avoiding distractions. Keep on point and focused. You will see your productivity and sales performance quickly improve.
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