By Nora Weintraub
The year is already halfway done—take a moment to process that. You only have six more months to finish whatever you’ve put off, be it perfecting your sales pitch or identifying sales opportunities. Okay, maybe you have some grace period in January, but if you’d set out to accomplish something by the end of the year, half of your time is now gone. Now, take a breath and let that mid-year crisis feeling float away. By managing your time wisely, exercising just a few organizational skills and focusing on what you need to get done, you can reach your end-of-the-year sales goals (or any goal, really) by the deadline and start 2014 off fresh.
1. Identify Where You’re Behind
What’s lacking? Do you still have a couple outstanding sales? Did you not meet your sales goals for a few consecutive months? Did you mean to start being active on Twitter? Start off your personal program to meet those targets by taking a look at what you still have to do—even if you’d rather not. You may not have gotten everything done at the beginning of the year, but you still have another six months to accomplish it all. Carve out some time in your busy schedule and make a good old fashioned to-do list, then place it in an area you see every single day. The key is to take a look at what you still have to do on a daily basis so that it stays at the forefront of your mind.
2. Create Personal Deadlines
On your to-do list, make your own deadlines. If you need to meet a certain sales goal by October, make an effort to get it done by mid-September. In an interview with Inc., Krissi Barr, founder of consulting firm Barr Corporate Success, advised professionals to establish their own goals and make them shorter than the official deadline.
“If I think something is going to take me an hour, I give myself 40 minutes,” Barr said. “By shrinking your mental deadlines, you work faster and with greater focus.”
Knowing that you only have another two months to close a sale can help you make it a priority, even if it doesn’t have to be done for three months. You can then take that extra month to establish a strong relationship with the client or fix any issues so you aren’t struggling with numerous challenges come December.
3. Start Your Day Calm and Energized
Wake up half an hour early and go for a run or hop on your bike. Getting some exercise in the morning, even if it’s just a few stretches or walking around the block, can help you get your brain moving before you enter the office. According to the American Psychological Association, exercise enhances a person’s mood and helps him or her feel motivated for the rest of the day. It also helps condition the brain to deal with stress better, making the mind stronger in the long term. Exercising can also normalize your rest patterns, helping you to get to sleep faster and better able to tackle the next day.
4. Don’t Quit
This may be the most important item on this list—do not give up. There will be kinks in the road to reaching your goals, but don’t let them stop you. In an article for Entrepreneur, business expert Grant Cardone reminded professionals that roadblocks only mean you need to get more creative in your sales strategy. If a customer has turned down your business, take the opportunity to connect on social media or follow up a few weeks later. The will to succeed is one of the best qualities a sales rep can have.