The 6 Stages of Sales Productivity
When you tie your daily tasks to a higher purpose (whether making an impact, advancing in your career, or providing for your family), you’ll feel more motivated to work and will know what to prioritize — those things that get you closer to your purpose.
People with purpose are intrinsically motivated and display competitive characteristics. The good news is that this is true for most sellers.
Productive sales reps are intrinsically motivated and highly competitive
are intrinsically motivated.
Top performing reps are good at balancing pessimism and optimism. In fact, a healthy dose of pessimism is useful when preparing and planning for contingencies. However, most of our respondents are optimists.
84% of reps say their friends would describe them as optimists
When you have a purpose, you hold yourself to high standards and expectations. So, it’s no surprise that 73% of reps meet their own expectations when it comes to the quality of their work.
The second stage of productivity is setting tangible (S.M.A.R.T.) goals for yourself — goals that are aligned with your team and company goals.
Your most important and obvious goal? Hit quota!
According to RepVue, 3% of sales teams hit 75% or more of their quota. How are individual reps doing? In our survey, we found that 43% of reps hit quota every quarter.
43% of reps hit quota every quarter
But don’t just set goals and forget about them. Have regular check-ins with your manager to review what worked well and what didn’t.
At Dooly, we set up individual and team pipeline boards to keep track of progress. Some reps even set up compensation boards for themselves in Dooly to help them forecast their own income as well as quota attainment.
Do you set weekly goals and check-in regularly?
Would you say you always hit quota each quarter?
Reps who set goals and check in regularly with their manager are much more likely to hit quota (57% hit quota vs 38% who don’t set goals or check in).
Communication and collaboration are key to closing deals. But too much information or ineffective communication can derail your efforts and hurt your productivity.
That’s why it’s important to set boundaries, expectations, and accountability. For instance, how often are you going to check emails, Slack messages, or attend internal meetings?
There’s not a one-size-fits-all answer to this, so find what works for you. According to Nick Cegelsky, the best reps batch and tackle Slack and email at a dedicated time instead of constantly checking and responding.
56% answer emails as soon as they come in; 35% set aside time throughout the day to respond to emails; 9% let emails stack up and get to them when they can.
How reps manage their email inbox
PRO TIP: Implement the Sales Communications Hierarchy. What does this mean? Some communications will make you money (sales calls and emails) and others won’t (internal admin conversations or talking to the wrong prospects and contacts). Prioritize and batch accordingly.
Most reps let the day control them instead of the other way around. We can talk about how the best reps batch and tackle Slack and email at a dedicated time vs. constantly checking and responding.
Founder, 30 Minutes to President’s Club
Productivity is about being effective, not overplanning. For example, you should know your peak performance times — are you a morning person or do you work best in the afternoon?
85% of sales reps know the time of day when they’re most focused
Planning will also help you break your day into the tasks that are going to make a bigger impact on your goals. For example, how much time should you spend prospecting vs following up?
37% of sales reps spend more than half of their time prospecting.
Do you feel you have enough time and resources to hit your targets every month?
A 20-minute task would take me two hours because I was doing a lot of things. So I started to block off time in my calendar and focus on one given task for 30 minutes and then give myself 5 minutes. So I’m hyper focused on a specific time but they’re dialed in on my calendar so I know exactly what task is next.
Strategic AE at Lattice
Lack of focus is a big reason why sellers miss quota.
As Nick Cegelski says, “A great way to miss quota is to spend your day muddling around Slack and email. Cut the fat and make an impact.”
What’s keeping you from selling?
Easier said than done:
- 49% of reps told us they struggle to concentrate on one task at a time.
- 57% of sales reps spend less than 40% of their time on sales calls.
- 37% spend 50-75% of their time on sales calls.
- Only 6% spend more than 75% of their time on sales calls.
Once you have a plan in place, it’s time to focus on the activities in your plan. Prioritize selling time — time in front of customers — and avoid distractions. Outsource all energy and revenue robbing activities to tools that automate or streamline the rest.
78% use systems, processes, or technology to manage and prioritize their time
86% finish what they started
Interestingly, 28% of reps said they don’t take regular breaks from work, which can eventually lead to losing focus and burnout. This is in line with our findings in the Sales Happiness Index:
Sales Rep Burnout
Productivity tracking is not just using tracking software to log your activities but reviewing your success and failures to find opportunities to improve.
Manage yourself while being accountable to your manager. This requires you to be next-level organized with your CRM, your call notes, and your pipeline.
65% of reps rely on CRM data to prioritize time and accounts
82% of reps say salespeople at their company are measured and held accountable for performance.
Dooly can help you create pipeline views and easily reference notes and data in Salesforce with a single command.