When the calendar turns to July and August, most people struggle to prospect because they believe that all of their prospects are on vacation.
Often summer is a great time to reach decision makers. They are in the office while their staff is away.
As, David Sandler said, “you can’t manage anything you can’t control,” so worrying about the time of year isn’t going to help you hit your Q3 quota.
Instead, do something about what you can control: your behavior.
Anyone who has worked with Sandler knows that controlling your behavior starts with a solid “cookbook.” A solid cookbook starts with specific, weekly goals for your active prospecting behaviors (cold calls, follow-up calls, walk-ins, etc.) as well as goals for results you want to track (meetings, closed files, closed sales,etc.).
Sending out email blasts, introductory letters or white papers can be included in your cookbook, but those are passive prospecting behaviors that require an active behavior as follow up.
It’s tempting to start with goals for the results you want to track like meetings and closed sales. Like the Sandler Rule mentioned above, those results are out of your control.
Instead, start with goals related to the behaviors you can control and, based on your experience or company averages, put in goals for results after you create your behavior goals. For example, if your experience is that it takes five calls to get one meeting and your cookbook calls for 25 calls per week then your “meetings” goal should be five per week.
Once your cookbook is created, follow it for at least one month before making adjustments. Less than one month and you won’t see patterns in your data. More than one month, and you may be too far off your path to correct yourself.
If you aren’t hitting your behavior goals, remember your results goals come from hitting your behavior goals, and talk to your manager or Sandler Coach about your results. You may need to work on technique or you may have self-limiting beliefs holding you back (e.g. “no one buys anything during the summer.”)
Summer doesn’t have to suck when it comes to your sales if you make a commitment to creating and following a cookbook.
Hamish Knox is a Sandler Trainer in Calgary, Alberta.