By John Serrantino, Sales Director at PipelineDeals
When I started my professional career back in 2006, I learned a lesson so valuable that it's stuck with me for over 10 years. Like most advice such as brushing your teeth twice a day, or eating your vegetables—it’s frighteningly simple. It doesn’t involve a mantra, reading a book, or all that much brain power.
So here it is, in all its simplistic glory.
It may seem odd, but the fewer buttons you press in your CRM, the more profit you’ll make.
That’s right, the advice that I’ve carried with me since Justin Timberlake brought “Sexy Back” was click-less buttons. If that seems fairly intuitive, it is.
If for some reason you are not convinced, here is the math:
Let’s assume the time to find and click each button in a CRM is approximately two seconds, and it takes you three clicks to get the job done. Multiply that by 10 sales reps, and every button clicked is a minute wasted.
And if you have to click an extra button in a core process that is performed 50 times a day/per sales rep, your team has just collectively spent 17 minutes of the day clicking buttons.
You may say 17 minutes isn’t much, which is correct. However, the problem, in most cases, isn’t a deficiency in one core process. It’s generally something that is compounded across most organizational processes.
That 17 minutes quickly turns into two hours (25 percent) of the work day. If 25 percent of your team’s day is spent clicking buttons, your team isn't being optimized. If you are hiring before optimizing, you are not optimizing the deployment of your capital.
If we look at capital as the oxygen of a business, you are in effect running a casino. Continuing the analogies, it is much better to train at altitude, with less oxygen, than to artificially provide more oxygen.
Here are 3 best practices to get you started:
1. Create structured to-do templates.
When a lead comes into your sales ecosystem, having a set follow up process is a good idea. Here’s an example of the structure we utilize at PipelineDeals.
2. Process is great, automated process is better.
As part of our sales process at PipelineDeals, we believe in utilizing social outreach to build stronger connections with our prospective partners. On the frontline, the sales team reaches out via LinkedIn to all prospective partners they are attempting to engaged with.
Further down the line, once my team has engaged with a prospective partner, I, as the Sales Director, reach out via LinkedIn.
In order to optimize my time and avoid missing any connections, I have built an automation to provide me with a task to reach out once we have reached the appropriate stage. Major time saver!
3. Stop typing the same email over and over again.
My personal favorite. Every business has emails that get sent over and over again to prospects or clients. Most companies type that email from scratch--every single time. Not only is this laborious, but it’s also likely to produce typographical errors.
Creating, saving, and storing email templates of commonly used messages is a quick win. As a best practice, I’d recommend creating “shells” of emails that have specific areas left open for personalization. This allows for time savings without creating an overly standardized and impersonal experience for the end recipient.