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Time Management

Not sure if this is the right place to post this - if it isn't, please accept my newbie apologies!

How do you all deal with time management issues? I've got lists, datebooks, schedules, calendars, spreadsheets - you name it, I've tried it. But I always feel like I'm running around with my hair on fire, with way too much to do. There must be an easier way that works!

Prioritizing seems to work well, but then there are always half a dozen things at the bottom of the list that never seem to get done. - by CarrieGee
Time management is a real concern for sales people. Give me a calendar and a to-do list and I'm good to go. ;) - by SalesGuy
How much "organization" does a salesperson really need? - by Marcus
How much "organization" does a salesperson really need?
I'm of the opinion that any professional needs a great deal of organization. With sales and marketing, there's a lot of information to keep track of, things to remember, and always a "to-do" list that seems to be a mile long.

I'd be interested to know if and why you think otherwise though, Marcus! - by CarrieGee
I'm of the opinion that any professional needs a great deal of organization. With sales and marketing, there's a lot of information to keep track of, things to remember, and always a "to-do" list that seems to be a mile long.

I'd be interested to know if and why you think otherwise though, Marcus!
I don't think otherwise. I just don't know how much is enough. Myself, I could probably get by with a 3x5 card file, appointment book, and a "To-Do" list. ;bg - by Marcus
Okay, so once we're organized, how do you best allot your time? Do you schedule a certain amount of time for each task, or just tackle them in order of importance and see how much time they take? - by CarrieGee
Okay, so once we're organized, how do you best allot your time? Do you schedule a certain amount of time for each task, or just tackle them in order of importance and see how much time they take?
I just start at the top of the list and work my way down. - by Marcus
I recommend doing a Time Management course - there are many of these available in book form. I am actually doing one currently - it is:

"How to Get Control of Your Time and Your Life" by Alan Lakein.

It was written a few years ago, but is still relevant, and is one of the best. There are a number of other books available as well though.

Also simply googling "time management" brings up a load of useful tips and advice. - by telegraph.hill
Thanks telegraph.hill, I'll look into the course you mentioned. I'm sure it would help quite a lot!

Google is fabulous of course, but I often find that it's better to ask those who know what they're talking about. Less filtering involved! ;) - by CarrieGee
I don't think otherwise. I just don't know how much is enough. Myself, I could probably get by with a 3x5 card file, appointment book, and a "To-Do" list.
Ah, the good old days. :re - by SalesGuy
Ah, the good old days. :re
LOL! That's exactly what I thought, SalesGuy!

On the other hand, who wants to be attached to their cellphone/Blackberry/insert-name-of-tech-gadget-here all the time? - by CarrieGee
LOL! That's exactly what I thought, SalesGuy!

On the other hand, who wants to be attached to their cellphone/Blackberry/insert-name-of-tech-gadget-here all the time?
Not me. ;wi - by SalesGuy
I'm afraid that managing my time isn't one of my strong suits. ;sm

In fact, I have a terrible time of it... some days I sit there and work like
a maniac and end up feeling horrible. Other days I don't get much done
at all. It's like a big vicious circle that I can't get out of. On the other
hand, everything gets done... so maybe being unorganized is actually best
for some people? Okay, so I know it's a stretch! :yi - by destiny
I'm afraid that managing my time isn't one of my strong suits. ;sm

In fact, I have a terrible time of it... some days I sit there and work like
a maniac and end up feeling horrible. Other days I don't get much done
at all. It's like a big vicious circle that I can't get out of. On the other
hand, everything gets done... so maybe being unorganized is actually best
for some people? Okay, so I know it's a stretch! :yi
Great day all,

Wonderful and insightful wisdom. If I may add...in zen, it's about and always will be about... BALANCE

michael coritsidis
job ready strategist/motivational speaker/life coach - by job ready strategist
I think effective time management come with using a method, either paper or software and sticking to it. At least, this has help me. I have to constantly remind myself to use my time management method. When I do this, I'm pretty successful at managing time. - by demonsmooth
I have done a program in India form a USA based company called missioncontrol...amazing program to get work and life balance..achieve more in less time..and being able to focus on what you are really upto...

check that out - by naishadh
Yiou need to categorize what you want to do in order of importance. Urgent items require immediate attention. Urgent items are any activities that are directly related to obtaining a sale.
Next are important items. Customer follow-up, customer service after the sale items.
Then list secondary items. These would be things that are necessary such as organizational items.

For my money the legal pad is the greatest organization system ever invented. - by Masteri5
Time Management is very important especially if you have your own business. Time is gold for me. I have calendar and set an alarm clock for my appointments. - by shinningstar
I'm having difficulty managing my time right now but I expect that to improve after the Holidays. It was good in many ways to start selling Avon Products shortly before Christmas but it has really been difficult to keep up with everything else in my life right now. - by ozzie
I know you can do it Ozzie. Good for me, I'm relax now. But after Christmas and New Year it will be hard time to manage my schedules. - by shinningstar
Some useful Advice: Before you go to bed write down all your appointments for tomorrow and number them. If like me you are calling on them then draw on A4 paper a round circle and inside the circle put the numbers [lets say] 1 to 14 of the 14 calls your doing, these numbers are placed in the circle to correspond with the 1 to 14 calls you have to do tomorrow.

The circle represents the area your working in, lets say its The City of Pittsburgh, so all your calls in northern Pittsburgh are shown @ 10 11 12 o'clock, calls in southern Pittsburg are shown in the circle @ 7 6 5 O'clock, east is 3 o'clock, west is 9 'o'clock. I know this is a very primitive idea [outdated and basic] but it fixed in my mind before going to bed -tomorrows programme and I could stop worrying and knew what I had to do, I was always at my first call at 9am. Doing this 15 minute mental EXERCISE job each night motivated me, and stopped me arguing with myself that I was not-doing-the-job-right. Arguing with yourself [and it happens] can spoil your day and ruin your concentration. - by Incidentally
Not sure if this is the right place to post this - if it isn't, please accept my newbie apologies!

How do you all deal with time management issues? I've got lists, datebooks, schedules, calendars, spreadsheets - you name it, I've tried it. But I always feel like I'm running around with my hair on fire, with way too much to do. There must be an easier way that works!

Prioritizing seems to work well, but then there are always half a dozen things at the bottom of the list that never seem to get done.
I would very, very strongly suggest that you check out "Getting Things Done". Google it. At the risk of sounding like a bit of an idiot, "it changed my life" - by Ed McLean
LOL! That's exactly what I thought, SalesGuy!

On the other hand, who wants to be attached to their cellphone/Blackberry/insert-name-of-tech-gadget-here all the time?
If you mean not following up with an e-mail and booking a second appointment then placing it in the clients calender is a bad thing, then my Blackberry and I will see you sitting in the waiting room as we are walking out of the buyers office with the sale. Embrace the technology and it can be your slave not vica versa. - by cammer
I spent a number of years as a consulting nuclear chemist and radiation protection specialist at commercial nuclear power plants. Which means I love physics!

I've always been baffled by the concept of managing time, because from a physics perspective time can't be managed. The proof is obvious when we consider... it's impossible to manage our time so effectively that we get 25 hours in a day, nor is it possible to manage our time so poorly that we only get 23 hours in a day.

We can't find time or make time.

The only thing we have control over is what we do in the slices of time each day.

A great deal of people manage their day by using a to-do-list. Stop and think for a moment, traditionally, how do we create a to-do-list?

The phone rings, emails arrive, clients or prospects call, boss assigns a task, a coworker needs a favor, sales calls to make, follow-ups to perform, demos to give, proposals and contracts to write, not to mention; market research to conduct and articles and white papers to read. If new tasks pop up while we're engaged in any of these activities, just add them to the list.

Yes, we can rewrite our task list. Yes, we can assign numbers or letters to denote importance, but what does that have to do with being effective?

So many people confuse their to-do-list(s) with their priorities. They run around with their hair on fire, adding tasks to and checking tasks off the to-do-list.

The gravitational attraction of the mountain of information and activities competing for our attention is like a giant black hole gobbling up space in our head and time in our day. Finally, our busy day ends without completing the key sales activities that add prospects to the funnel, move deals closer to close and increase our capabilities as sales professionals.

So what should we do?

Instead of trying to better manage our time, we should focus on managing our effectiveness. Sales effectiveness is a function of our ability to identify and prioritize high impact sales activities that are in alignment with achieving of our objectives.

Stop focusing all your efforts on planning your day and start planning your week, month and quarter.
  1. Develop objectives for your territory, sales and personal development
  2. Set objectives for each of the key phases of your sales process
  3. Define the success metrics and targets for each objective
  4. Create a rolling 90-day action plan and organize tasks by objectives
  5. Create a model work week - your weekly schedule
  6. Move your tasks off the action plan and onto your calendar
  7. Measure progress towards achievement of the objectives weekly
  8. Say no to everything else
I highly recommend Sally McGhee's book Take Back Your Life using Microsoft Outlook 2007 to Get Organized and Stay Organized (she even covers work life balance).

So how do we identify the high impact sales activities?

Start by answering three questions:
  1. What does a great day of selling look like?
  2. What do you have to do to prepare to have that great day of selling?
  3. What do you have to do to string more great days of selling back to back to back?
- by mnicksjr
Hi,

In any field you are a good time management is essential to success. Planning your time allows you to spread your work over a Semester, avoid a 'traffic jam' of work.To meet the demands of study you need to spread your workload over a Semester. Work out what needs to be done and when. Work out how to use your available time as efficiently as possible.
There are some tips to Make Time Management Easier
  • Complete small tasks straight away rather than putting them off. This will encourage you to begin tackling larger tasks needing attention.
  • Break difficult or 'boring' work into sections. This allows you to approach a large task as a series of manageable parts.
  • Remember that it's your study and the time you spend on it is up to you. If you find yourself losing direction, sit back and think of why you are doing your degree; remembering your goals can put everything into perspective.
" If you want to make good use of your time, you've got to know what's most important and then give it all you've got. ;sm;sm"

Regards,
Olivia - by olivia751
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