It’s time to get back to school…that means our kids are back on a busy, productive schedule, with goals and timelines. But before that can happen, my wife and I sit down to evaluate where we are and figure out where we are going. Soon activities, holidays, and school work will crowd our days, and if we’re not careful, we’ll find ourselves busy, but not necessarily headed toward anything important. The end of summer signals a time for strategic planning for all of use! Don’t miss this moment!
Review the Plan
If you’re on the calendar year, you have one quarter left to make the year worthwhile. Hopefully you have a plan your working through to build your business – prospects you’re working on, a pipeline your closing, quotas you plan to meet, and career goals to take your business to the next level. If you don’t, you might want to get something in place for Q4.
Plan to Fill Your Pipeline Now
Once the holidays hit, people are hard to reach. Sure, there may be budgets at year end that must be spent, but setting up a strong pipeline early in the quarter makes year-end a whole lot easier. Get a call plan in place and start setting up meetings through September. Make a strong push to get as many meetings lined up as possible right now, so that you are working toward closing in October, or early November. Most projects can’t be invoiced until they are completed, so give yourself time to close and implement before year end.
Demand generation events are one of the best ways to build your business if you are looking for new clients. There is still time if you start now. It takes about 60 days to plan a worthy event, so that puts you into mid-October. Plenty of time to do the event and execute the follow-up plan. Follow-up could take anywhere from two to four weeks, so start thinking now. Otherwise you’ll be into January before you know it. You don’t want that.
Review Time Usage
The biggest issue in sales is managing time wisely. Where do you spend it, who do you focus on, and where is time being wasted? Sales is a busy business. Review your last three quarters – where are you wasting time? It’s like your family budget – if you don’t review it monthly, you may find yourself floating along, working hard, but not actually accomplishing your primary goals. Soon, you’ll look back and see that your time is spent, people are on holiday, and you’re hoping to make a come back next year. Too late…do it now.
© 2011, David Stelzl