1. Do you plan the effective use of your time each workday in 30-minute increments?


When salespeople don’t plan their days they will never accomplish all that could be done.  They will spend time doing urgent tasks instead of focusing on important activities that will increase their sales.  When time is planned in 30-minute increments, achievement increases because there is focus on doing the important things as efficiently as possible.

  1. Do you keep your sales pipeline full with qualified prospects?

The more opportunities a salesperson has in their pipeline, the more sales they will close.  Selling is a numbers game.  If they don’t have a full pipeline, they are probably not planning time each day to find new opportunities.

  1. Do you know your sales call to closing ratio?

Selling is a process.  The results of a salesperson’s activities are in direct correlation to knowing and following their sales process.  It is really as simple as:  contacts to appointments, appointments to quotes, quotes to follow-ups, follow-ups to closes.  If a salesperson knew for every twenty people they contacted they would eventually make one sale and that one sale would generate a certain commission, then the salesperson would religiously follow their sales process.

  1. Do you spend your time exclusively with qualified prospects?

It is important for salespeople to be able to qualify their prospects as quickly as possible.  Using effective questioning techniques will allow them to quickly assess the opportunity.  Selling is a numbers game.  The more qualified prospects in a salesperson’s pipeline, the more sales they will make.

  1. Do you obtain a steady stream of referrals by following a customer referral dialogue?

The most effective means of finding new business is through doing more business with existing customers.  The second most effective way of finding new business is through referrals from existing customers.  Every current customer should be providing referrals on a regular basis.  A system for receiving referrals and turning them into sales is a skill every salesperson should practice regularly.

  1. Do you believe your product prices are too high?

Professional salespeople sell themselves first, reputation of the company second, product third, and price fourth.  The customer thinks price is the most important factor only because poor salespeople have focused on price.  Ask a customer how important low price was to them when they didn’t receive their shipment on time.  People buy from people they believe, like and trust.  Sell yourself first.  There is no loyalty in price.

  1. Do you exceed your sales goals on a consistent basis?

Too many managers hold salespeople accountable for performance without teaching them how to reach that level of performance.  Even when goals are set, if the system of accountability has not been established and regularly followed, goals will not be achieved.  Most managers are focused on the goal and not the daily steps required to achieve the goal.  Monitor the steps and the goal will be achieved.

  1. Do you follow-up with your prospects at the right time and never use the two deadly questions?

Selling is a process not an event.  National statistics suggest it takes between 5-7 contacts to build the trust to persuade someone to purchase from you.  Eighty-four percent of people say no before they say yes.  The follow-up is where salespeople turn the no into a yes.  By-the-way, the two most deadly questions are:  Have you made up your mind yet?  Do you have any questions?

  1. Do you look forward to sales meetings?

Most meetings are too long, lack direction, fail in achievement, don’t involve every individual and tend to be negative.  The solution is having a time specific agenda that incorporates the principle of Assign and Report.  Give everyone a chance to tell a success story.  Take action, don’t just talk about issues.  Resolve and move on.

  1. Do you participate in a personal development program that helps you achieve continual improvement?

Most salespeople have no idea what it takes to become a professional salesperson.  They do what they think is right or what they have seen others do.  I wouldn’t want to go to a doctor who just did what he thought was right without any study or practice in the field of medicine.  Professional salespeople have studied the principles and skills associated with sales and look for improvements on a daily basis.  Even after receiving a medical degree, the average doctor spends on average eleven hours each week improving their knowledge and skills.

  1. Do you implement all the good ideas learned from the sales education seminars you attend?

Salespeople are not just born; they are well trained and highly motivated.  They are motivated because they understand the relationship between skills, effort, time and money.

  1. Do you spend two hours each week building sales strategies with your manager on a one to one basis?

To be successful at anything there must be a system of accountability.  To hold salespeople accountable for their performance on a weekly basis, and to teach and train them to perform better at their trade on a weekly basis, is a formula that will deliver sales success.  Corrective action can be taken 52 times each year if needed.

  1. Do you arrive at appointments well prepared with a scripted presentation?

Most salespeople just wing it.  Since most of them have never prepared for a career in sales they don’t understand the importance of preparing for each sales opportunity.  They show up and then they throw-up on the prospect by telling the prospect everything they can think of about their product or service without first assessing the prospects needs.

  1. Do you look the part of a well-groomed sales professional?

The first impression a salesperson makes is their appearance.  If a salesperson looks the part it will go a long ways towards their success.  The first reality is perception.  Salespeople should dress one level above their audience.

  1. Do you remain excited about your work and your company’s products?

It is much easier to sell a product you believe in.  It is also easier to remain motivated when you believe in the company.  Both of these variables are influenced by a salesperson’s income and compensation.  If the company provides a good working environment and the salesperson believes in the company’s ability to deliver the product or service, then with the proper training and management, the salesperson should be able to earn an income that will cause them to be excited about their job.

  1. Do you practice effective listening skills?

No skill is more important than listening.  Telling is not selling.  In communicating, the most important thing a salesperson can do is to effectively determine the need, or pain, of the prospect.  If salespeople don’t know how to listen, they will never discover the pain.  The sale is the prescription for removing the prospect’s pain.

  1. Do you have long-lasting relationships with your customers and prospects?

People buy from people they believe, like and trust.  Selling is based on relationships and relationships are built over time.  When they discover the needs of the prospect, and work to find the proper solution to their needs, the relationship will strengthen, providing the trust necessary to make the sale.

  1. Do you take responsibility for your performance without excuses?

If salespeople don’t take responsibility for their performance, then whether they are successful or a failure, it won’t make any difference to them.  They do what they do without any personal obligation.  They will never achieve the success of those who are responsible for their performance.  These salespeople always have an excuse for their poor performance.

  1. Do you engage in a regular diet of sales books and other sales improvement materials?

No one is born with the gift of salesmanship.  It is a learned skill just like law, medicine, accounting, carpentry, etc.  Those salespeople who have learned the principles and skills of sales will outsell all others, four fold.

  1. Do you perform at the highest rate of return on your employer’s investment in you?

Most salespeople have no concept of their potential, nor do they understand the investment that management makes in them.  The biggest single cost in a salesperson that doesn’t perform like they should, is the cost of lost opportunity.  If you want to perform at the highest level, be accountable on a weekly basis for your performance.