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Rule 10: Manage Multiple Customer Priorities

Overview

What are your biggest time wasters?

Interruptions

Management by crisis

Lack of priorities

Conflicting goals

Meetings

Disorganization

Procrastination

Voice mail

E-mail

How many of these apply to you? Did you find that you don't have any time wasters of significance? Or did you, like most people, recognize at least a couple that cut into your productivity? All of the items on the list except "Lack of priorities" and "Conflicting goals" are activities that we can control to some degree—and even those two items are activities we can handle proactively.

Most sales professionals have a discretionary control over their time. But if you find that you occasionally spend time on activities that are not highly productive, it is worthwhile to change how you handle them. If you don't use your time as productively as you should due to outside influences or your own distractions, take corrective action. It is impossible to be a sales leader with unproductive work habits or interferences.

The most common time waster is interruptions. That's true whether those interruptions come from a cell phone, a pager, a phone, or a visitor. I find that many salespeople have a high interest in finding ways to use their time more effectively.


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