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Sales Tip - 6 Steps to Achieving Sales Goals

Over the years I've seen many salespeople (and sales managers and companies) get goal planning, action planning, and commitment right, and I've seen many fall short. Without a clear goal they don't know where they're headed, so any path will get them there.

In my experience, only two things set apart those who live by goals and those who don't. Salespeople who live by goals:

-- Know where they're headed
-- Commit to a goals routine

Here's a roadmap you can follow for achieving your sales goals:

1. Review your sales goals first thing in the morning every day. Say your big picture goal out loud (yes, seriously), then go scan your plan for the week and review goals and actions for the day. At the end of each day, review how the day went, and set goals and actions for the next day.

2. On Friday or Saturday, review the week and set goals and actions for the next week.

3. Once per week (this can be at your Friday or Saturday review session), review your goals with a goals partner. Your goals partner can be a peer, a mentor, a coach, or a friend, but it's someone you explicitly work with each week to make sure you're on top of your goals, staying committed, and pushing yourself. Along with goals, milestones, and progress, you should discuss any hassles or potholes that are holding you back so you can fight your way through them.

4. Once per month, meet with a small group of people you trust to review what you're doing, where you're headed, what you'll do in the next month, and get ideas for how you can achieve more and shake off any nagging hassles that are holding you back.

5. Once per quarter, review your progress toward your annual goal. Set no more than 3 quarterly priorities that you'll direct all your passion, energy, and intensity toward so you can stay on track to meet your annual targets. During the quarterly meeting, step back and ask yourself, "What do I absolutely, positively need to get done over the next three months to achieve my annual goals?" Define it, commit to it, and set your monthly targets and actions for the next three months.

6. Once per year, set your targets for the next year. Make sure you ask yourself, "What do I need to do to get to my big picture goal?" When you're done with your goals and plan, ask yourself, "If I get done what I am about to do, will it help me get to my big-picture goal?" Make sure it does before you put your head down for a year and make it happen.

As you're crafting your goals, you should also take care to take your big picture goals and align them to shorter term goals, including what you need to do this year, this quarter, this month, this week, and today.

Sometimes when we're working with salespeople to craft their goals and actions they get hung up on having "the right template" or detailed tracking mechanism, and since they don't have it, they don't even get started. Don't fret too much about the tracking sheet, but do concentrate on taking a step toward your goal every day.

Source: John Doerr, president of RAIN Group, a sales training/assessment company