Everyone knows about the concept of return on investment. Everyone wants return on investment.
They want to know that whatever financial resources they put into something, they’re getting more out — else, why would they do it?
Return on investment is measured precisely. Big decisions are made based on data that supports a positive ROI, because companies want to get the absolute most out of what they’re doing.
Is it worth spending money on a marketing program? Yes — if it’s the right one. The marketing will get customers in the door that’ll be easier for sales to close with, so the money you spend on advertising, design, and so on will be repaid with profit through your deals.
So, Let’s Take This Same Concept and Apply it to Time
A company’s financial power is important to allocate correctly. But let’s apply this same logic to time.
Drilling down to an individual, like yourself, you have limited time in a day. Let’s say 8 hours. If you’re in sales, you’re directly responsible for closing deals and boosting the company’s revenue. All your activities ultimately have to be in service of this goal.
You could probably draw up a list right now of things you do that knock that ball forward a lot further than other things. Here’s what might rate fairly highly:
- Preparing and giving a presentation
- Researching a prospect’s needs
- Talking to a lead in-person
These things are tightly tied in with revenue growth. On the other hand:
- Checking your email
- Unnecessary meetings
- Administrative tasks during peak sales hours
These may not be so helpful.
Low Return on Time Activities
Chances are, there are portions of your day where clients and potential clients are more receptive to your contact. Lunch meetings could be prime opportunities, while the 8-9am timeslot is possibly better left for your clients to orient their days before you chime in.
So, if you have to have internal company meetings that don’t generally directly drive value, try to get them scheduled at times you wouldn’t be talking to your prospects. Same for things like organizing your desk, building yourself schedules, and so on.
And don’t spend so much time in your email inbox. It’s often not as important as it feels.
Allocating Your Efforts to Optimize Your Return on Time and Increase Sales
The thing about these low return on time activities is you do have to do them — to some extent. Like I said, try to schedule some more appropriately. But for many others, you can turn to automation.
Take email. Let’s say you collect a bunch of business cards at an event. You could personally reach out to each and every one of them and take hours writing up email after email that only really differ based on the name. Instead of that, get yourself a sales email sequence set up that sends out a short, friendly, follow up email addressed to the person personally — but created so that all you need to do is upload your new contact list and hit send. Once.
Many high return on time tasks will resist automation and will, at the end of the day, take significant time and your personal attention. The best way to succeed in sales (or any position) is to audit what you’re doing, how much time it takes you, how much the activity contributes to your goal, and explore opportunities for automation.
You can also succeed in sales through marketing and sales alignment. At Flawless Inbound, we specialize in bringing together and augmenting the strengths you already enjoy and identifying your untapped opportunities for growth. Reach out here (don’t worry, we will make the time for you!), or learn more about our sales enablement program here.