Making and KEEPING Business New Years Resolutions

Every year, new years brings all of us to a new beginning.  We reflect on the previous year and ask ourselves, “what can I do differently to become more successful?”  Our minds race with ideas of new goals, new ideas and we are charged up to pursue them.  Unfortunately, most of us quickly fizzle out, lose our fire and our commitment and things end up a year later not much differently.  Speaking from personal experience, I believe that sales people are usually the ones who start the new year off with a bang, have big dreams and goals to make things different, and are the quickest to slide back into their old ways.  Why is this the case?  What can we actually do to keep our new years resolutions and end the year on a much different note?

Just like learning at a seminar, the key is to just focus on one  specific thing that you want to change.  The other component is a specific and measured outcome that you want that change you’re making to achieve for you.  For example, if you are a sales person, you may define the end of year outcome as a particular revenue goal number or number of new customers acquired in 2012.  Let’s take this for our discussion.  My goal at the end of 2012 is to hit a revenue target of $500,000 in gross sales and bring on 25 new customers this year.  Now that you have defined a specific goal measured by a numeric outcome, it is much easier and more relevant to now work that backward to figure out what you have to do on a monthly, weekly and daily basis in order to hit those particular targets.  Based on those numbers, you know that you need to bring on 2 new customers a month and drive approximately $42,000 a month in business.

The question now is what activity levels every month, week and day are required to achieve those numbers?  The key is to break that activity down into very small numbers, measured by the day.  Then to make it even easier, break that daily activity goal down into segments of hours.  For example, say your activity plan calls for making 30 new key contacts every week.  By the day, that is 6 contacts daily.  Broken down by the hour, that is about 1 key contact per hour that you need to hit.

The question now is how do you do that most effectively?  The answer is to get help from those that you know.  Ask for referrals.  Call on previous customers, colleagues and those you have done business with or are connected to on social media sites like LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.  Find out who is connected to the people you want to reach and ask those people for help.  It really comes down to creating leverage and working smarter and not just harder.

The other thing I’ll mention that has everything to do with your new years resolutions, goals and plans actually working is this:  Make sure that your outcomes and the activity plan required to get there are REALISTIC.  Don’t set numbers that are so high that your chances of hitting them and staying on course consistently are slim.  The other thing that is critical to success is to make sure that the activity plan you set and engage in is CONSISTENT.  In other words, if the goal is to reach 30 key contacts every week, don’t hit 50 in January, 6 in February and then crank it back up to 60 or 70 in March to make up for ground you lost the previous month.  Stay consistent with the 30.  This is the 20-Mile march principle.  For further understanding of this, read the Amundsen-Scott Race to the South Pole story of 1911-1912.  Consistency of activity and pace is critical

Lastly, share your plans and ides with someone you know, trust and who will keep you accountable for the results.  Knowing that you are responsible for your activity and outcome is critical to success, as the old saying is true, what is measured and accountable for is what actually gets done.  Make it a great 2012!

For feedback, comments and help, feel free to contact me at http://www.antarcticmike.com