By Ryan Warren, Vice President of Marketing
Let’s face it, I am no different then most sales and business development people, we all need to optimize our schedules to get everything done that needs to be done. But let’s be honest, meetings tend to take up a large bulk of our work day. While meetings are crucial for professionals to collaborate with each other, just because you cut out a chunk of time for a certain meeting does not necessarily mean you have to ensure every minute is dedicated to that meeting. But we have other options, social collaboration tools both internal like Chatter and Yammer and external like Linkedin and Twitter. Yes, sales reps often feel in their element in person, but your schedule is already jam-packed with things to do. Use technology. Get on networking sites to connect with colleagues. Employ customer intelligence analytics that do a lot of client research for you.
Question if There is a Better Way
In a recent LinkedIn article, entrepreneur Shane Snow advised professionals to say goodbye to long meetings and invest in networking. While abandoning meetings altogether may not be viable for many sales reps, Snow recommended professionals take a page out of the entrepreneurial playbook and always question whether they need to be in a meeting or if there is a better solution out there. If you need to connect with a colleague about a project, Snow suggested going digital with either email or social media.
Only schedule time for a meeting when you need absolutely need to – entrepreneurs understand their time is valuable and refuse to sit in a 30-minute meeting with people who may not even have need to be there when a seven-minute one in front of the water cooler does just fine.
In her Entrepreneur blog, Carol Tice, CEO of TiceWrites Inc., reminded professionals unnecessary meetings can cost nearly $37 billion every year for the U.S. economy. We may be recovering from the recession, but we still can’t afford to lose that much money on an annual basis for something irrelevant. So Tice recommended sales reps go online to connect with each other. Networking sites – and even networking meetings – can produce stronger results than more traditional methods of communication.
You may still need to go to a meeting every once and a while because it’s still standard procedure for most companies, and it is easier to close a sale face to face rather than on the phone or through an email. However, using all the tools at your disposal can significantly reduce how much time you spend in meetings every day.