In the words of Lord Chesterfield: “Take care of the minutes and the hours will take care of themselves.”
Isn’t that the truth?
At Cognism, we understand the importance of time and careful planning. It’s how we stay one step ahead in B2B sales and ready to meet any challenge. No one knows this better than two of our expert Cognism sales leaders, Harry Brown and Nancy Newman, who’ve both got their time management down to a T.
Nancy Newman started as a Business Development Representative, working tirelessly and managing her time wisely, eventually being promoted to Associate Sales Director in under 2 years! She says:
“I made time to train myself and believe that training your sales team can be incredibly beneficial. There is always room for improvement. You need to see training as a way to invest your time for you and the team.”
“When you get stuck in your day to day, it’s easy to slip into habits – this training will help you take stock and come back to work feeling refreshed and ready to go again.”
Harry Brown couldn’t agree more.
He went from Business Development Executive to Salesforce Partnership Manager in 2 years. He puts his success all down to investing in upskilling himself, having the motivation to exceed expectations, and his excellent time management skills.
We sat down with the dynamic duo to find out their top time management hacks! If you’re a B2B sales leader, you won’t want to miss this. Let’s dive in 👇
1. The value of mentors 👩💼
When starting out at Cognism, new team members are given a mentor to guide and train them so they aren't too overwhelmed.
Harry remembers his mentor and how valuable he found their support and guidance. He's gone on to mentor quite a few members of Cognism’s outbound sales team, from Sales Development Representatives (SDRs) to Business Development Managers (BDMs).
Harry has this to say about the mentor-mentee system:
“The mentor-mentee system ensures that you’re not seen as the only person capable of training, but also gives more senior reps the opportunity to practice their sales leadership roles.”
“Both Nancy and I have found it helps the mentor reps improve their overall ability and conversion rates by learning through teaching.”
This is a great system. Not only does it expand the knowledge of the entire sales team, but it ensures that the team can function at their best if someone were to get sick or go on leave.
2. Dedicate time for your team ⏰
It’s always important to dedicate time to your team, whether it’s simply checking in, going over their expected KPIs for the week, or discussing their concerns and ideas.
For some new B2B SaaS sales leaders, this can be a problem. Sometimes catching up with everyone can get overwhelming, and may keep you from meeting your own deadlines. Nancy had this to say about managing team expectations as well as your own time:
“It’s great to have an open-door policy as this really encourages open communication, but on some days this just won’t be feasible.”
“Ensure your team is aware of events in your calendar at the start of the day, especially if it will obstruct or delay responses to their questions. Dedicate time with the team at the end of the day, so they don’t distract during the day.”
3. Plan ahead 🗓️
At the start of each week, take a moment to plan your schedule. Plan your calendar and set up your to-do list to reflect your most important deadlines. This way, you can also remind yourself of upcoming meetings and do any prep that might be needed.
Harry recommends making the most out of your meetings by:
“Create an agenda for meetings via Zoom and send out any prep work or decks needed before they start. This is so people can discuss findings and not the deck itself.”
4. Learn about calendar blockers 🚧
This is probably the greatest time management hack for B2B sales teams!
Calendar blocking means creating events on your Outlook calendar to block out time for all of your routines, work, and social events. This is a tip that’s been endorsed by leading productivity experts and Nancy finds it invaluable for managing her time:
“I found I could have a to-do list but this wasn’t enough. Making sure you combine that to-do list with physical calendar blockers to ensure you can designate that time on one project not only improves your efficiency but also the quality of the work you produce.”
Harry is an advocate for calendar blocking too, but his experience in sales has led him to always think ahead and that means planning for the unexpected. You might have a perfectly blocked out calendar but if an urgent task comes in you’re going to have to prioritize it, which is why he offers this excellent advice:
“Expect the unexpected. In addition to setting time aside for your to-do list, have time blocked for unexpected emails/requests for help/workload. This can be any time but 30 minutes at the end of the day and an hour on Thursday mornings has worked well for me.”
Get even more B2B sales tips! 🚀
There you have it! The top time management tips from our expert sales leaders Harry Brown and Nancy Newman, direct to your screen.
If you’re eager for more advice on managing your time better, have a look at our blog on time management hacks for B2B sales reps here.
Got more time on your hands?
At Cognism we’ve published several helpful guides on sales and marketing. So if you’re looking for more sales advice you might want to download our guide for sales professionals on building a winning sales strategy - How to sell SaaS.
It’s a great guide that will enable your sales team to outsell the competition at every turn. Included in this whitepaper are:
- 3 actionable insights for selling SaaS more effectively.
- Our top tips for improving your sales demos and company communications.
- Advice for using social proof to your advantage and so much more!
Click 👇 to get the guide!