Imagine the incredible results you’d have if you and your team really focused on a consistent basis.
- Contribute more
- Waste less time ramping back up
- Serve customers better (internally and externally)
- Find more customers
- Come up with more ideas
- Plan better
- Be less frustrated and stressed
- Help others focus more (by interrupting them less)
- Make more money (for everyone … including you)
Nothing’s guaranteed, of course. But it’s a better bet. (And in the long run, you’ll enjoy more.)
5 Ways To Knock Out The Bulk Of Distractions
- Establish focus hours with your team (or company-wide) – chunks of time each day where everyone will allow everyone else to focus (that includes you). No inter-office communications unless it truly can’t wait. At JustSell, ours are from 2 pm – 4 pm (2 hours a day). We’ve experimented over the years with multiple focus hour blocks (two 2-hour periods, morning, afternoon, etc.). One 2-hour block seems the most universally acceptable for us at the moment, but a few people enjoyed having a morning block too. You’ll make mistakes occasionally and break focus hours, but with commitment and reinforcement, everyone will benefit. If you’re really SalesTough (characterized by uncompromising determination, resilient and results-oriented, relentlessly prepared, objective and service-minded), in order to minimize outside distractions, let your family and friends know your focus hours (and turn off your cell). They’ll love you for it … eventually.
- Turn off email alerts and commit to checking it at the most minimal level you feel is possible for your particular sales world without having a negative impact on service. If you’re SalesTough, most of your inbound emails are probably important but still don’t need attention for at least an hour (if not longer). Be truthful with yourself and set your interval so everyone wins. If you can set only two or three specific times a day to respond to email, do it. Consider having an auto-responder that lets people know when you address your email (e.g., “Thanks for your note. I usually check my email three times daily (8:30 am, 11:30 am, 4:30 pm). If you need me immediately, please call my cell/ assistant/ office line.”).
- Turn off chat and instant messaging services unless your work absolutely requires it to get the job done (key word – absolutely). Having to phone someone or talk with them live (by visiting them) will make you more aware and respectful of someone else’s time (and yours). And everyone’s time is important. Be careful with it. Once it’s gone, you can’t get it back.
- Avoid the web during money hours (your most valuable time of the day … where you can make contact with prospects and customers) unless you absolutely need it for your work. The distractions are endlessly wonderful for those who’d prefer to avoid making good things happen (which of course, isn’t your goal). If you must open a browser during the money hours (or focus hours), make sure your home page is something that doesn’t have the potential to encourage you down destruction distraction road (e.g., news or email sites, social networking sites, personal favorites). Search and discover outside your money hours, at lunch, or on a well-earned break.
- Face away from distraction (the door or other people – not customers, of course) if you’re in an office setting that allows you to do so.
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