Performance Time

How many consultants have been looking for that easy way to more production? Wouldn’t it be great to find one?

We look at the normal advice of better client development, higher closing skills, computerized matching systems and eighty-two of the newest, absolutely hottest sales techniques and throw our hands up in frustration.

How are we ever going to learn and, more importantly, implement all this new information? Seems overwhelming sometimes, doesn’t it? That’s only because it is! Want a simpler, easily implemented system that I guarantee will raise your production? Well, read on.

How many times have you been taught time management? Too many, right? Well, I contend you’ve never been taught time management! The reason is that time management is an unworkable and unmanageable concept. You cannot manage time. You have all the time anyone has. You have 60 seconds in every minute, 60 minutes in every hour and 24 hours in every day. So, lets quit talking about how you “manage” it and start talking about how you “spend” it.

In understanding this concept, let’s drop the term “time management” and re-label it “behavior management.” Since, we agree that everyone has all the time available, then the critical question is “which behavior do we choose to exhibit during the time available?”

This article is entitled “Performance Time” to show that only eight of our 24 hours are available for performance. We must work when our paying customers work which is generally 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. Yes, we can recruit and re-qualify candidates all evening if we choose but our paying customers’ time is limited in our ability to reach them. Some smart cookies call east in the morning and west in early evening and stretch their available time to a 10-hour day. But for these purposes let’s work on a normal eight-hour work day.

Let’s examine some of our “behavior management” during a regular workweek and see what it costs us over a period of a year.

These behaviors we are about to discuss are not “problem behavior” traits but are the normal ways many of us use our time.

There are approximately 260 working days in a year and approximately 22 working days in the average month. Yes, 12 x 22 = 264 but the difference is a holiday here and there. OK, Mr. Math Whiz? Now, lets look at working days lost over a period of a year.

1. Two weeks vacation is 10 days lost.

2. Average sick days = 6 days a year.

3. 15 minute break in morning and afternoon is 16.25 days lost.

4. One 30-minute errand a week is 3.25 days lost.

5. Average 10 minutes before lunch and 10 minutes after lunch (whether you leave the office or not) is 10.83 days lost.

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6. Family emergencies and special events average 6 days a year.

7. 15 minutes late to work once a week is 1.62 working days.

8. Personal calls, business and general ineffectiveness of 30 minutes a day is 16.25 days gone.

9. First 30 minutes of the day in hellos, coffee and office gossip is 16.25 days lost.

If we add up these times, it amounts to 86.45 days lost a year because of these habits. So if we subtract 86 1/2 days from 260 we have 173.5 days left. Divide that by 22 and there are only 7.8 months that we even have available for our work.

Now, if we are ineffective during that 7.8 months (unenthusiastic presentations, no daily plans, not selling hard, calling dial-a-prayer) then we can see that many of us are producing our year’s volume in less than six months time.

Some of us do not exhibit all the traits listed and some of us have even more. The idea is to understand the compounding effect that any sloppy habits have on our yearly performance.

A great sales trainer, Steven Brown, once said that many top sales people become that way by not only determining what they will do in a day but by also determining what they will not do! What about you? Will you not interview walk-ins? Not come to work late? Not take personal calls during prime time? Each of those decisions has a significant and positive impact on your bottom line.

This is a performance method that requires no special training and is available to every consultant tomorrow. Lets all make next year the year we become professional in our work habits and quit expecting $150,000 in production for $25,000 worth of effort.

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