Our world is complex and we are expected to remember a lot of things, and no matter how good your memory you will not remember everything!
How can you best deal with that?
1. Take notes … lots of them! I have a lousy memory but I ALWAYS take notes, in EVERY meeting.
2. Use Checklists! Many professions use these to ensure that nothing is missed. Pilots (for example) use checklists at various stages of the flight process to be 100% certain they don’t miss anything. Obviously the consequences could be disastrous if they “forgot” to put the landing carriage down before landing, or to check the fuel situation before taking off (just a couple of small examples).
Any salesperson could create some very simple checklists to make sure they covered everything off … in every situation. Checklists for sales meetings, for entering notes in the system, for weekly reports, for setting up meetings, for reviewing goals, for creating To Do lists etc.
Here are a couple of very simple examples …
1. The meeting checklist … a list of common things you should be talking about with a client in most meetings. This doesn’t stop you from having your usual style of meetings, talking about personal things or about any other subject. The checklist will just remind you about gathering information before you head in to the meeting … and you can double check it just before leaving.
Are there any opportunities … now, soon, longer term.
Is there anyone else you should be talking to?
Are there any coming changes … budgets, projects, personnel etc?
Is the client aware of other offerings from your company?
Does the client have any feedback/suggestions for improvement?
Where does this person fit into the client organisation?
You should set up your next meeting now.
That is a lot of things to remember … and for most meetings you will remember some of the items, but likely not everything that you should. One way to ensure that you always remember to gather all of the information is to have a quick reminder.
The meeting checklist that you see here will do just that! (Modify it to suit YOUR requirements).
2. What about those Monday mornings when you come to the office ready to start the week .. but still not quite “into it”. Do you wait until you have had your second coffee, and caught up on everyone else’s weekend adventures before “figuring out’ what you need to do?
Maybe a simple Start of Week checklist will help you to focus, get organised and make you that much more efficient. It could be VERY simple .. maybe something like the one here, or modify it to YOUR needs.
Checklists can help you be more efficient, and being more efficient means selling more! That should be a good incentive to give it a try!!!
PS. Checklists are not JUST for sales, they are for EVERYONE!
Kevin Dee is CEO of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
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