The best sports teams spend a great deal of time preparing for their next game - analyzing past performances, identifying strengths and weaknesses, and creating a game plan for success. The best sales professionals do the same thing. They know what they're good at, what they need to work on, and where they stand in relation to their goals. Most importantly, they plan for success rather than wait for it to come to them. In short, they have a game plan.
Here are a few tips to follow when creating your game plan:
Manage your time effectively
In automotive sales, you could be sitting around for hours waiting for an UP to walk through the door. Then you get swamped with five or six things to do right before your shift ends (or when it was supposed to end). This can be minimized when you schedule your day to be as efficient and productive as possible. Instead of surfing the internet or taking meandering trips to get coffee during those low-traffic lulls, plan to do something productive. These are great times to set appointments, send out follow-up cards, drum up repeat and referral business, review dealership inventory, learn about new products or features, read up on manufacturer incentives and specials, or anything else to help you get better as a salesperson.
Know your statistics
Take a look at last month's results. How many people did you talk to? How many demo drives did you go on? How many UPs got to the write-up stage? Knowing your sales statistics helps you identify strengths and weaknesses that you can then work to improve upon. It also makes it easier to figure out what you need to do to reach your goals. For instance, if you know your closing ratio is 25% and your goal is to sell 18 cars this month, then you need to talk to 72 people. Otherwise, you may just be setting an arbitrary number without a plan on how to get there.
Continue to improve
The most successful salespeople are never content; they keep working to get better day after day, month after month, year after year. In the automotive industry in particular, there are always new things to learn and new ways to improve. Establish one or two ways to grow professionally each month and come up with a plan for how to do it. These can be things like learning more about a certain vehicle, staying up-to-date with factory incentives and programs, or getting certified on a specific make or model to maximize your pay plan.
Being proactive when it comes to selling will help you work more productively, attain your goals, and keep improving as a salesperson.