A good chunk of my clients are revenue producers. They’re entrepreneurs, coaches, salespeople, CEO’s, etc.

One of their responsibilities is to sell something. As my sales manager use to say: Nothing happens until something gets sold!

They can be selling a product that you can touch, or a service, that’s invisible (like coaching,) In either case, selling is a demanding and at times, a stressful game.

So, why do so many revenue producers struggle to make their numba? AKA sales quota?

It’s been my experience the reason people fail to produce the revenue numbers expected of them or create a successful business is because they don’t spend their time on what’s important.

Instead of planning their calendar for important face time or phone calls with prospective clients they:

  • Commiserate with colleagues in the coffee room
  • Read articles on the industry
  • Shop for new clothes to impress
  • Rearrange their desk or files
  • Call on clients who are easy to talk to
  • Have extended lunch breaks with friends
  • Gossip and promote bad news about competition
  • Spend endless hours on their personal social media

Nothing happens until something gets sold. The majority of the aforementioned activities contributes zippo to the bottom line.

I ask my clients:

  • What are the behaviors of a salesperson who consistently makes their revenue numbers?
  • What are the beliefs of a professional coach who has a thriving coaching practice?
  • Think of a successful CEO you admire. What’s a successful day in their life look like? Where did they spend their to time to move the organization into a stronger position?

In the end, my most successful clients ask themselves one question:

Will this activity accelerate the process towards victoriously crushing my endgame or will this activity impede me from my goal?

Today’s guest post is by Steve Keating (CME, CSE) Selling Skills Manager for Toro Company. As Steve says “what’s most important?”

Enjoy the post!

Money Hours by Steve Keating, CME, CSE

“Time Management” is a bit of a misnomer since time most certainly cannot be managed. We all have exactly the same amount of time in a day. We get 1440 minutes in a day whether we use them or not. Nobody gets more, nobody gets less.

Successful people don’t actually manage that time better but they do manage the events that use that time better, often much better. They prioritize the events doing the most important ones first. They set aside time during a day to work uninterrupted on an important event or events to make certain that the event is completed within a given 1440 minute period, what most of us call a day.

It’s important to understand that when I say “event” what I actually mean is all the “stuff” that you do during a normal day. A phone call is an event, making a decision is an event, answering email is an event, lunch is an event, driving to and from work is an event. Whatever activities or tasks you do in a day should be considered an event and prioritized according to what’s actually important to you.

Most people, and yes that is a generalization but the research is overwhelming, most people do their best work and make their best decisions early in the first half of those 1440 minutes. If an event is important to you or particularly challenging then consider doing it early in the day. Truth be told, many of the hardest things I do and my biggest decisions of the day are completed before most people’s alarm clock goes off.

Without getting real deep into using your time more effectively let me share a concept that I think will help you immensely. It’s the concept I call “money hours.”

The concept comes from my years as a full-time salesperson when using my time effectively could be the difference between a successful year and a year far less than successful. (By the way, that’s true whether you’re in sales or not.)

A salesperson’s 1440 minute period is loaded with various tasks that must be completed on a timely basis in order to be successful. The problem is most salespeople like some of those tasks a lot more than others. So they do the things they like more often than they do the things they don’t. I think that’s called “being human.”

The most important thing a salesperson can do is be face-to-face with a customer. There are a limited number of minutes within their 1440 minutes when that’s possible. If your customer is only in their office from 7:00am to 3:00pm then those eight hours are your “money hours.” If you’re doing anything other the being face-to-face with a customer during those hours than you’re not being as productive as you could be.

I know there are other important things as well, getting those quotes out, responding to phone calls, answering emails, and of course those exciting call reports are all important. The question that successful people are constantly asking themselves however is “what’s most important?”

Even if you’re not in sales the odds are overwhelming that you have some sort of “money hours” within your own 1440 minute period. You almost certainly have things to do that are more important than others, things that the require the help of other people that can only be done at certain times of the day, those are your money hours.

If you don’t have any of these limitations then it’s important to know which of those 1440 minutes you are performing at your peak. That portion of your 1440 minutes make up your money hours and it’s in those minutes that you should be making your biggest decisions and undertaking your most challenging tasks.

While we all get 1440 minutes everyday it’s vital to understand that those 1440 minutes are not equal. Some are far more important than others. When you use your money hours more effectively you’ll see a big difference in your productivity, even if you’re not so effective at using the rest of your day.

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