Pilots use them to make sure they go through every step in their routine, every time … even though they might have been doing it every day for years!
You can create checklists to make sure that you remember to do everything you should do!
Checklists allow your brain to focus on the more creative aspects of selling because you don’t even need to think about the mundane process steps that need to happen, you just follow the list.
If you forget one step in a process it might not mean a crashed plane, but it could mean an unhappy client, an angry boss or even a lost sale.
“Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.” David Allen
Here are a few examples a salesperson might consider (Note: these would be customized and expanded over time to suit the individual):
The Monday morning checklist.
Make sure your calendar is up to date and you know where you are going and when this week. (You can try to schedule more meetings in the same general location on those days when you are travelling somewhere).
Make sure you did not miss any “To Do” items last week.
Update your “To Do” list with items for this week.
Schedule time to make important outbound calls/return messages.
Add to your “new leads” list and research people to call.
Update your distribution lists to ensure you are staying in contact with all the people you should.
The Friday Evening Checklist
Add any new contacts into the CRM. Add them to newsletter/contact lists.
Update systems with any information that might have been missed … notes from meetings, updates on sales funnel, new leads etc.
Make sure no important items were missed from “To Do” list.
Add items to next weeks “To Do” list.
Add weekly activities to your ales report so that by month end you don’t miss anything.
Add new tasks to “check lists” … routine things you might do.
Send interesting article to clients using distribution lists.
Review your distribution lists to identify contacts that you should be meeting in the next month.
The Closed Business Checklist
Complete ALL appropriate internal paperwork/system updates (list it out so you don’t miss anything)
Schedule client follow-ups to ensure client satisfaction.
Send thank you cards to client, to internal people who helped with sale, to anyone who may have helped with referrals etc.
You can have checklists for anything, whether personal or work related. You might have a checklist for business travel, to make sure you remember everything; you could have a checklist for going to the cottage etc.
“Meticulous planning will enable everything a man does to appear spontaneous.” Mark Caine
Checklists just make it easy to ensure you don’t miss anything. Salespeople are notoriously bad at the administrative side of the job and checklists can help to keep them on the straight and narrow. It’s not much use selling something and not getting paid because the salesperson forgot to enter the right information in the system!
Tip: Salespeople are notorious when it comes to the administrative side of their role … entering data into the system, sharing information with other parts of the organisation etc. Sit with the salesperson who best completes all of the administrative tasks associated with their role and create a checklist based on what they do. Share this with the rest of the sales team to help them to be more efficient.