17 Practical Time Management Hacks for Sales Pros in 2023

Time is the most valuable asset. Handle it well to generate enormous leads. Learn hacks and strategies to manage time effectively & achieve more in less time.

17 Practical Time Management Hacks for Sales Pros in 2023

Do you feel that 24 hours are less than a day? Have you ever wished you had a time machine? We've all had that thought, right?

It is a device that rewinds the clock and undoes all those moments we wish we had not wasted in the past. Well, it's not just you; everyone feels the same. Rather, think about it; let us make our time management a real-life time machine.

“Time is money” - Benjamin Franklin

The above quote is a word of truth (satya-vachan) for a salesperson. This is so because being a salesperson if you want to earn money then you must have to spend more time on high value sales activities like prospect targeting, strategic relationship building, pre-sales engagement, effective communication, and customer retention.

It has been found that only 28 percent of sales reps follow a structured time management system, while the rest work without time management. In this blog, I have listed practical time management hacks and strategies that can help you increase your sales from 2X to 5X. But before heading to that let’s understand.

Why is time management so important for sales reps?

Mastering time management is among the most challenging disciplines for sales professionals. You always have many important things to do, but not enough time for all of them. However, with a small change in how you manage your time, you can make it work. Let’s understand some aspects of why time management in sales is so important.

Helps you in prioritizing the tasks

As a sales rep, you would know how difficult it is to manage 10 different tasks that require your focus and attention. Managing multiple tasks, like lead generation, lead nurturing, customer meetings, follow-ups, administrative work, and more is not an easy task.

Time management helps you prioritize these tasks based on their importance and urgency. By concentrating on what matters most, you will be able to maximize your chances of success and simplify your sales process

Helps you to stay consistent

Prospecting is the first step in the sales process, which involves identifying potential customers. Without consistent effort, your pipeline cannot run smoothly. Effective time management allows you to dedicate proper time to prospecting, ensuring a steady liveline for new leads.

Reduces your stress levels

Poor time management often leads to stress. When you're constantly rushing to meet deadlines or juggling too many tasks, your mental and emotional well-being can suffer. On the other hand, efficient time management reduces stress and provides a healthier work-life balance. 

Helps you to engage better with customers

Engaging with prospects is the most important part of the sales process. By managing your time well, you can have sufficient hours for meaningful interactions, building relationships, noticing concerns, and finally closing deals.

Imagine you're a real estate agent. Instead of just pushing properties to potential buyers, you spend time getting to know their preferences, answering their questions, and addressing any concerns they might have.

By managing your time effectively, you ensure you have enough hours to genuinely connect with clients, understand their needs, and guide them through the buying process, ultimately leading to successful deals and satisfied customers.

Helps you to stay efficient

Nobody wants their hard work to go to waste, so it's wise to channel your energy in the right direction. With the help of time management, you can use your energy efficiently, so you can be the best sales rep and close your deals!

Are you eager to know about the hacks for time management in sales? So shall we explore them?

17 Practical Time Management Hacks and Strategies for Sales Pros

I'm going to share with you 17 practical time management hacks and strategies that will help you with time management for all types of sales activity. 

Set clear goals and objectives

It's always important to have a road map for your sales activity; your journey needs a destination. Knowing what you want to achieve helps you organize your time effectively. You need to have a to-do list for the day, and the list should be prepared the day before.

Here is a suggested to-do list template that you may find helpful to follow.

To-do list template for sales time management.

What is your plan for the next day?

Prioritize tasks, focusing on the most important activity that needs to be performed. This will help you manage your time. You can improve your sales pipeline management dramatically by looking at your sales workflow and setting your priorities each day.

Free up your time from manual tasks

Administrative tasks are essential for making operations more efficient. It refers to various routine activities essential for the smooth functioning of an organization. These may include paperwork, data entry, scheduling, and communication. Although essential, spending time on these duties can distract you from more strategic aspects of business operations.

By simplifying and automating administrative tasks, you can save time and resources, improve efficiency, minimize errors, and allocate resources to more valuable activities. This optimization enables you to operate more smoothly, allowing you to concentrate on tasks that require creativity and critical thinking.

In short, administrative tasks can distract you from other crucial sales activities and keep you stuck in routine tasks.

But here's a smart move: what if I told you that you could pass these tasks to someone else who not only completes them but also provides recommendations and insights? Sounds strange, right? Why would someone else do your job, and if they did, why would they put in extra effort for you?

Well, their job involves handling administrative tasks and providing insights. If you're still unsure of what I'm trying to convey, I'm talking about CRM software.

Efficiently manage your sales tasks and optimize your sales time management with GPT-powered Zixflow CRM.

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software plays a pivotal role in modern business operations by streamlining and, in many cases, eliminating administrative tasks. By automating processes related to customer interactions, data management, and communication, CRM software allows you to significantly reduce the time and effort traditionally spent on administrative duties. It can also help you with other tasks, such as client meetings, customer appointments, effective sales meetings which are planned for online, or any other planned interaction.

This not only enhances overall efficiency but also empowers you to focus on more strategic and customer-centric aspects of your work. From managing contacts and tracking leads to automating email campaigns and providing valuable insights, CRM software serves as a valuable tool in minimizing administrative burdens, enhancing productivity, and encouraging stronger, more meaningful relationships with clients.

Keep sales calls short and to the point

Customize your call conversation by making sure that it is short and to the point. Customers appreciate it when you have an on point conversation with them. 

Keep your sales calls valuable and interactive; avoid cold calls or very bland calls that can have a negative impact on your client.

Just saying product information is not enough; you need to have two-way communication with your prospect. It's a win-win situation when you respect their time, and they're more likely to engage with you.

Imagine you're at a coffee shop, and someone approaches you with a friendly and concise chat about a new book they think you'd love. They share a few key points, spark your interest, and invite you to join a book club for more details.

This is like keeping sales calls short and to the point – offering valuable information without overwhelming your audience, making the interaction engaging, and leaving them eager for more.

Use 80/20 rule

Have you heard of the 80/20 rule?

The Pareto Principle, or the 80/20 rule, It's a cool trick, which means you focus on the 20% of your efforts that generate 80% of your results. Identify the high-impact activities that contribute the most to your sales success and allocate more of your time to them. So the moment you invest your efforts in the right direction, the sales process leads to success.

Don't juggle multiple tasks at the same time

Is it really possible to do 10 things at the same time?

Multitasking is possible, but it affects your quality, lack of concentration, and stress. I understand that as a sales professional, you have many tasks, from lead generation to lead nurturing to administration tasks to building relationships with clients to closing deals, and many more.

But when everything is happening at once, such as writing an email to one prospect while simultaneously talking on the phone with another, or reviewing their pipeline during a meeting focused on improving their sales documentation, it becomes overwhelming, leading to confusion.

Switching from one thing to another costs you a lot of time. Therefore, that leads to a lack of focus, less productivity, and ultimately lower quality work, creating confusion.

To overcome all the above problems, you should consider adopting CRM software like Zixflow People where everything is centralized, and you do not need to hop around for your tasks.

Optimize time management in sales by effortlessly storing and accessing your customers' data from a centralized location with Zixflow People.

For instance, imagine you're managing a sales team without a CRM system. You might find yourself juggling emails with different prospects, searching through various spreadsheets for client information, and trying to schedule follow-ups on a separate calendar. This scattered approach not only consumes time but also leads to errors and missed opportunities.

However, by adopting CRM software like Zixflow CRM, you can streamline all these tasks into a centralized platform. All client interactions, schedules, and relevant data are accessible in one place, allowing for smoother workflows and increased efficiency.

Use the Eisenhower Time Matrix

Have you heard of the Eisenhower Time Matrix?

Make Better Decisions with the Eisenhower Matrix. (Source- LinkedIn)

The Eisenhower Time Matrix is a useful tool for prioritizing tasks based on their urgency and importance. It categorizes tasks into four quadrants:

  • Urgent and important
  • Important but not urgent
  • Urgent but not important
  • Neither urgent nor important

This matrix helps you understand what to prioritize first.

It will help you in time management by focusing on the important stuff which will assist you in the sales process.

Say no to distractions

Hey! Have you seen 'The Wolf of Wall Street'? After watching the movie, I developed an interest in Leonardo DiCaprio. His acting was so good, and even the co-actors played interesting characters. The direction was impressive, and now I'm eager to watch more movies featuring him.

Here, we lost our few seconds talking about something that was not even relevant to the time, right? The gossip can go on and on. This distraction can affect your sales pipeline.

Distractions from social media notifications to office chit-chat, you need to learn to say 'no' to these time eaters. Silent unnecessary notifications during work hours and establish boundaries with colleagues when you need to be focused, which gives you additional time for sales productivity.

Automate follow-up

Follow-ups are a crucial part of the sales process and a constant challenge for salespeople. Keeping track of leads, sending reminders, and maintaining consistent communication, along with many other tasks, can be time-consuming. You often spend valuable hours on these manual tasks, impacting your productivity and diverting your attention from building client relationships. So, what's the solution?

The solution is automation—an automation tool that frees up time by handling repetitive follow-up tasks. Its automated systems ensure timely reminders, precise lead nurturing, and allow you to focus on what matters most: building connections and closing deals. This not only improves efficiency but also empowers you to work more effectively in a dynamic and competitive market.

For example you can automate and schedule personalized follow-up emails for your prospects with the Zixflow email automation to ensure that your communication stays consistent and relevant. This not only saves time but also enhances the impact of your email outreach.

Enhance sales time management by minimizing manual effort and errors in email writing with Zixflow email automation.

Another example to automate follow-ups is WhatsApp automation, tools like WhatsApp campaign builder provide seamless solutions. This tool captures leads through personalized WhatsApp conversational marketing with alluring WhatsApp advertising messages. This helps you connect with potential customers by sending personalized messages through WhatsApp to capture leads effectively.

Furthermore, this tool sets up automated reminders and messages to nurture leads or provide updates directly through WhatsApp. This not only adds a personal touch but also streamlines communication, making the follow-up process more efficient.

Enhance time management in sales with Zixflow's WhatsApp automation. Streamline follow-ups and prioritize core activities.

Be prepared for twist and turns

Sales can be like a rollercoaster ride that twists and turns unpredictably. You need to always be prepared for what comes next. For example, you might be working on a big B2B deal with a promising client, and suddenly they change their priorities or budgets. In such moments, you need to be flexible and prepared for B2B sales strategies. It's like a sailor adjusting their sails to catch the wind when it changes direction.

So just be ready with the pivot so that it helps with time management by allowing you to adapt quickly to changing situations. When you're open to adjusting your approach, you can avoid wasting time on tactics that are no longer effective or relevant.

The Pomodoro technique

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method that involves working in focused intervals, which means you work for typically 25 minutes and then take a short break of 5 minutes. It's an amazing way to maintain your productivity without feeling overwhelmed. Practicing this technique will improve your time management.

While going through Dr. Heather Hodges’s blog, I found how to use the Pomodoro technique.

It has been found that the participants who adopt the Pomodoro technique experienced:

  • More energy
  • Better concentration
  • Increased interest in the work
  • More motivation to continue the work
  • Less fatigue
  • Less distracted or bored than those in the non adopted group.

Will you give the Pomodoro technique a try?

Use the two minute rule

The two-minute rule is a simple yet powerful time-management technique. Imagine you receive an email from a lead asking for some additional information. And if it takes less than two minutes to send that response, then just do it right away; that is a two-minute rule. And also, quick responses show your responsiveness and engagement, which can positively impact the prospect's perception of you.

Delaying and allowing tiny activities like this to pile up might result in a huge overload that can impact your productivity. In addition, in sales, timely reactions might mean the difference between closing the deal and losing the opportunity. So, by following the two-minute rule, you not only save time but also take advantage of sales psychology to create trust and move closer to finalizing the deal.

Take advantage from data insights and make informed decisions

Working without data insights poses a significant challenge, especially as each customer has unique needs and demands for the product or service you offer. The absence of tools for informed decision-making consumes valuable time, diverting attention from essential tasks. Without these insights, you may find yourself manually sorting through large amounts of data, risking missed opportunities.

This is where data insights come into play. Implementing data insights from a reputable CRM system like Zixflow allows you to quickly make more informed decisions. These insights stand out by providing a simple platform to untangle complex data, enabling you to extract useful insights effortlessly. 

With Zixflow Data Insights, you can save time, prioritize effectively, and make strategic decisions in a competitive market.

Learn from the masters

Study the habits and techniques of successful sales professionals or sales influencers. You can read their sales books, listen to podcasts, or listen to interviews; there's a wealth of knowledge out there waiting for you that can help you grow in your sales career.

You need to know what their time management secrets are. Let me help you out.

10 secrets of time management for salespeople by Dave Kahle. (Source- Amazon)

Dave Khale is one of the world's best sales professionals and the author of 13 books. His book, 10 Secrets of Time Management for Salespeople, will help you understand his way of time management. You can also read his other books for reference to boost your sales management journey.

Who is your favorite sales influencer?

Adopt a growth mindset

Adopting a growth mindset by cultivating a belief in your potential for personal and professional development can help you overcome day-to-day challenges. This mindset helps you see challenges as opportunities for your learning and growth rather than impossible hurdles. 

As a sales professional, adopting a growth mindset can save you time. Instead of viewing setbacks or rejections as roadblocks, see them as valuable lessons. This change in perspective allows you to quickly adapt, learn from experiences, and adjust your sales engagement strategies efficiently. Focusing on continuous improvement and learning enhances your resilience, enabling you to navigate challenges with agility and save valuable time in the dynamic sales world.

Master time blocking

Becoming proficient at time blocking is a valuable strategy for boosting productivity and efficiency in the sales field. This approach involves assigning specific time periods to different tasks or categories of activities, enabling you to concentrate on one task without distractions. By organizing the day into dedicated time slots for activities like prospecting, follow-ups, and client meetings, you can maintain a focused and disciplined workflow.

Time blocking helps minimize multitasking and ensures that each task receives the necessary attention. This simple and effective time management strategy empowers you to approach your responsibilities with purpose and control, ultimately leading to improved effectiveness and results.

For example, imagine you're a sales professional starting your workday. Instead of jumping between tasks randomly, you implement time blocking. In the morning, you allocate a specific time slot for prospecting, allowing you to focus solely on identifying potential leads. In the afternoon, another block is dedicated to follow-ups, ensuring that you give each client the attention they deserve.

Finally, the end of the day is reserved for client meetings, creating a structured approach to your workflow. This not only helps you avoid the pitfalls of multitasking but also ensures that each task receives the dedicated time it requires, leading to a more purposeful and controlled work routine and, ultimately, improved effectiveness and results.

Swallow the frog 

‘Swallow the Frog’ might sound Eww!, but it's a clever time management trick based on a quote from Mark Twain. He once said, "Eat a live frog first thing in the morning, and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day."

Which means that as a sales professional, you have those tasks that you would rather avoid, like prospect hunting on LinkedIn, networking events, or talking to that one prospect you want to avoid.

But here's where the "Swallow the Frog" trick comes in. It means tackling those hard tasks head-on, right at the start of your day. Get them done first, and you'll feel a sense of accomplishment. It's like clearing the yucky stuff off your plate so you can enjoy the tasty other stuff of your day like sealing deals and improving your sales process.

Take care of yourself

In the process of time management to become a sales professional, have you forgotten your well-being?

In this race for sales to perform at their best, you need regular break stops. Don't forget to take care of yourself. You need to rest, eat well, and stay energized. Your well-being is your most valuable asset. maintain a healthy work-life balance. A refreshed mind and body are essential for peak performance in sales.

Say hello to productivity with a time management strategy

Implementing a sound time management strategy is a crucial step toward enhancing productivity. The insights gained from the above blog emphasize the importance of better time utilization in the field of sales. By incorporating these practical strategies into your daily routines, you can streamline your schedules, prioritize tasks effectively, and ultimately elevate your performance. Being productive is more than just a greeting; it's about using practical time management techniques to get real results.

However, the journey to enhanced productivity doesn't end with time management alone. It's a continuous evolution. To take your productivity to the next level, consider exploring tools like Zixflow CRM. It goes beyond efficient time utilization by implementing automation features such as workflow automation and sales cadence designed to refine and enhance your workflow. 

With Zixflow CRM, you can automate repetitive tasks, streamline communication, and ensure that your efforts are consistently aligned with your goals.

So, is managing time the sole factor in increasing productivity? Nope. It's about leveraging tools like Zixflow CRM to add an extra layer of efficiency.

To make your journey easy, give Zixflow CRM a try and get access to the sales automation tool, CRM tool, and many more tools that can help you through various sales pipeline stages ensuring that every aspect of your sales process is optimized for success.

Get a personalized 🆓 Zixflow demo today!

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