I’ve been struggling with focus lately.
I have an ever increasing list of TODOs and my communication tools (i.e., email, Twitter, Skype, IM, Linkedin, Facebook, etc.) are never short of requests. In working through my own challenges with focus I realize it is certainly one of the top 10 keys to success.
Sales success is no different–focus is critical!
Unfortunately, I’m not sure that focus is something that you can take a course on, pass a test, and consider it accomplished. I think it’s a skill that needs attention every day.
It’s a fact (at least in my personal testing) when I’m focused, I …
- Get more work done,
- Create better results,
- Waste less time in between tasks, and
- Offer better service to my customers (and audience–like YOU)
Focus is the fuel for …
- New ideas,
- Creative ways to find and engage customers, and
- Helps make sharper, more effective plans
All this leads to less stress and that persistent feeling of being overwhelmed. So how do you build daily focus?
Here are some things that I have found help me focus my sales day. (Please add your ideas in the comments section, below this article)
Set Up Focus Hours
This means that you set certain hours of the day specifically for focus. This means that there will be no interruptions. Unless it is a time-sensitive issue, there should be no communications between members of the office during this time. This makes it possible for people to focus on their work. As much as we’d like to think so, human beings are not capable of multitasking like a computer operating system. Every time we switch between tasks, there is a period of recuperation that slows us down.
Turn Off Email Alerts
Unless this would negatively impact your service, it is a good idea not to answer emails immediately as they come in. Taking the time to switch from one task to responding to emails slows you down. Even if your business is highly centered on providing customer service at a rapid pace, it is very rare that an email can’t wait for at least an hour to be answered. If you designate specific times during the day to check and respond to emails, you will get your tasks finished faster. In most cases, you will end up spending less time on the emails themselves this way as well.
Do Not Use Instant Messengers
Unless these are completely necessary for your sales model, they are nothing but a burden. Just knowing that somebody has sent you an instant message, whether or not you take the time to see what it says, is enough to spoil your focus. In order to concentrate and get your work done, you need to avoid distractions like this.
Stay Away from Your Web Browser
Unless you absolutely need it in order to get your work done, the internet is just a distraction. If you must use the internet to get your work done, make sure that you don’t get distracted and start clicking on links that seem interesting, but are way off topic.
This is my two cents on a topic I continually battle against. How do you improve your focus? How does that improve your sales performance?
I’d like your help to improve. I bet the other folks reading would like your help too.