The Ultimate Sales Productivity Guide
The best apps, tips and tricks to become an insanely productive salesperson.
The demands of being in sales can be stressful. There’s a never ending list of things that need to get done, prospects to call or customers to follow up with. And just when your to-do list is clear, a dozen more emails show up, all requiring some sort of action.
Your time is better spent selling, not managing tasks and email. Here is a list of the best apps, tips and tricks to help you become an insanely productive salesperson.
Let’s start where most everyone begins their day, with email.
It’s no longer enough to just “check” or not check your email – you need an organizational system. And if you’re like most salespeople, you feel overwhelmed and frustrated by the amount of email you receive. You could spend an extra 10 minutes every day for the rest of your life sorting through spam and newsletters, or take 15 minutes today and tell your email client to do it for you.
This may seem obvious but use your email client to setup rules. Chances are you’re in Outlook, so setup a few Outlook rules. This will auto-filter emails you’re cc:ed on, newsletters, meeting invites and other junk.
Next, setup corresponding folders for your rules. This will save an enormous amount of time and energy processing them, nearly 13 hours – or 28 percent of your work week, according to a report from the McKinsey Global Institute.
Finally, block out a time on your calendar strictly for email review. This will give you time to process the email that actually matters. And for the really important ones that require some extra time, make them to-do items.
There’s an app for that
Integrates with Salesforce
Salesforce is the hub for most salespeople. Tracking tasks, customer relationships and deals is a daily occurrence. Here are a couple apps that you can incorporate into your Salesforce world.
Evernote: Think of this as your “everything” vault. Store meeting notes, links, documents and everything in between. The integration with salesforce can help paint a full picture of your customer relationships without having to re-enter that information.
Dropbox & Box: How many times have you emailed a file to yourself so you had it ready for a prospect meeting? Stop emailing yourself and use one of these apps to store and organize your documents. Plus, they allow you to collaborate with your customers, so you can avoid having to email documents back-and-forth.
Get stuff done
Task management is important for every salesperson. If you’re using task lists in Salesforce, these apps might help you better prioritize and manage your day. Or instead of using the dreaded post-it notes to jot down all of your tasks.
Wunderlist (iOS/Android/Mac/Windows): Create projects, tasks and sub-tasks, set due dates and add reminders so you never forget another to-do. And remember those emails that you needed to make in to-do items? Wunderlist can do it for you by simply forwarding them. Also, write down all of your to-do items for the day on a notepad. You’re more likely to remember things you write down and it’ll give you a better sense of organization.
We’ve all been on the phone when the prospect on the other line spouts off an important bit of information you need to jot down. You reach for a pen and paper, but it’s nowhere to be found. Instead, reach for this app.
Scratch (iOS): it’s dead simple and launches lightning fast. No fumbling for a note-taking app or waiting for something load. Just type what you need to remember. And when you’re done, you can have it automatically send the note to yourself via email, sync to Dropbox or wide range of other options.
Another dead simple app that does one thing really well. Don’t waste your money buying a scanner, use this app instead.
Scanbot (iOS/Android): Scan customer documents, prospect proposals and everything in between. And since you’ve setup your Dropbox or Evernote account, your scanned documents will automatically sync to your specified account.
A few tricks
Meetings: We all hate them. Next time you have to schedule a meeting, make it for Friday afternoon. Everyone will be in a rush to leave for the weekend. This will make the meeting short and to the point, saving everyone time.
Friday: Often known as the least productive day of the week. Make it your most productive. Start your day earlier than usual. Don’t check your email for the first two hours of the day (if possible) and work on major projects you’ve been putting off. And instead of sending emails, schedule them to be sent on Monday. Because you weren’t actually expecting a response, were you?
Finally, treat your day as a sequence of sprints, not a marathon. Set a timer for 45 minutes or up to an hour-and-a-half to get up and move around or take a 15 minute mental break. This will allow you to keep your energy levels high and stay better focused.
Share your productivity tips with us. What apps do you use to stay productive on the phone or in the field?