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4 Expert Salesperson Tips to Work Smart Not Just Hard

We know there simply aren’t enough hours in a day to complete your daily tasks. Every salesperson feels the weight of this reality. 

However, there are some ultra-successful reps who seem to do it all — and more — with the same limited amount of time. There’s no doubt you’re pouring every ounce of energy into hitting sales goals and meeting customers’ endless requests. The trick is in their power to work smart, not just hard. 

Of course, working smart not hard sounds like an anomaly for a busy salesperson. 

So, we reached out to experts in the sales field and asked them to share their best “work smarter” hacks. 

Here’s what they had to say:

Have patience and focus on customers 

Hard work can be draining, especially when you are working twice as hard as a colleague sitting next to you — but selling half the products. As a result, you can lose focus and motivation.

Follow these simple steps:

1. Have patience. “Smart working” comes with experience.

2.  Learn about your customers. Ask them probing questions to understand their lifestyle. Find out if they are paying more than what you can offer, and then pitch your product.

3. Build relationships that are suitable to your customers, so they always come back to you based on that trust.

4. Make sure you can answer questions without delays by showing up well-equipped with product and market knowledge.

Ahmed Ali, Content Marketing Executive at Centriq

Build trust through a positive attitude

Everyone is smart. Based on my experience, people that are drawn to sales are smart and passionate. The best sales reps are focused on the relationship, not the transaction.

The secret is your attitude. People like to work with reps that they know, like, and trust. How you interact with friends and colleagues is a sign of how you interact with leads and customers. Having a positive attitude makes work fun and demonstrates that you love what you do.

When I was a field rep for a medical device business, I would regularly call on sleep physicians in Toronto. One particular sleep physician was difficult to connect with, but once that relationship was established, it turned into a strong and fruitful partnership that lasted for years. Frequent face-to-face meetings were the key to establish and build trust.

Albert Ho, Founder of Healthcare Heroes and author of Checkmate: How To Win The Sales Game in Healthcare

Focus on driving average order value

The best way to work smarter (not harder) as a sales professional is to focus your time on fostering high-value customers rather than making new ones. To do this, you must focus on driving average order value rather than your number of sales. 

Average order value is the average amount your customers spend every time they make a purchase. If you focus on increasing your customers’ purchase size, rather than increasing your number of customers, you’ll find your job is a lot easier because there’s less of a barrier to making a sale with existing customers. 

Imran Raza, CEO of ISTIK

Be intentional with your time

Everyone has the same 24 hours in a day to get things done. The difference between the most successful salespeople and everyone else is how they spend their time. 

The secret to success is staying focused:

1. Prepare for the day ahead. When you take the time to prepare for the day ahead, you are left with a comprehensive picture of where you stand on any of the daily challenges that might come up. So, each morning, take time to review what went well yesterday and look for opportunities for improvement. 

2. Put a timer on it. Set a timer and work uninterrupted while the timer is going on a particular task, whether it’s for a half-hour or more. Then, take a five-to-10 minute break before resetting the timer. 

3. Take advantage of the sales tools available today. Sales technology is growing rapidly, which is a good thing because the legacy software came out in 1999 and hasn’t changed much since. We hear about artificial intelligence making its way into everything we do these days, including sales. If you can get your hands on these tools, leverage AI and machine learning to work in the background, collecting information from calls, texts, emails and more, and dynamically creating contacts, activity lists, and much more.

Adam Honig, CEO, Spiro