Knowing how to sell isn’t the same as knowing how to work. You can be very effective in sales and be very inefficient and very ineffective when it comes to working.
Focusing on the Right Outcomes
Activity isn’t the same thing as outcomes. You need activity if you are going to have outcomes, but knowing what outcomes you need and holding yourself accountable for those outcomes is how you improve your effectiveness.
It is easy to be busy and still not make any progress on your most important outcomes. You can be a very good salesperson who chooses to allow themselves to be bogged down with the trivial and the insignificant.
Effectiveness at work begins with knowing your outcomes.
Planning Your Week is Planning Your Work
Most people don’t plan their week. They don’t know how valuable the planning exercise is when it comes to producing results. Instead, they live in a reactive mode, allowing the world to have its way with them.
It takes time to plan your week. But that time is an investment that produces dividends by providing you with the time to determine your three most important outcomes for the week and to block time to make progress towards them.
Planning your week is planning your work. Planning your work ahead of time is what allows you to do better and more valuable work.
Tracking Your Commitments
Most people are great at keeping their calendar. But they aren’t so great at keeping track of all the other commitments they make that aren’t being scheduled as an event.
Throughout the week, you make all kinds of commitments. Some of them are so small as to be quickly made and just as quickly forgotten. Without tracking your commitments, you aren’t likely to keep them.
Doing good work means keeping your commitments, large or small. Your attention to detail and follow-up are what enable you to do good work.
Doing Quality Work
It’s sometimes easy to swap quantity for quality. We cross off tasks from our to-do list and feel a tremendous sense of accomplishment as if we are getting things done.
But getting things done efficiently yet poorly isn’t how you should work. It isn’t what produces the results you need, nor does it produce work you can be proud of.
Slowing down and doing quality work is its own reward. But if you want more reasons to do quality work, remember that you are going to be known for the work you do. It’s also worth remembering that work done well doesn’t have to be done again later, and nothing is more expensive when it comes to your time as having to do the same work over again.
If you want to produce better results in sales, do better work. How you work is as important to your results as how you sell.