"An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes that can be made in a very narrow field."

~ Physicist Niels Bohr, quoted in the Harvard Business Review ~

Telephone Sales Employee Daily Checklist

How prepared and agile are you for your daily work on the telephone…

Use this daily checklist to keep you on track and on your toes…

1. When you come to work in the morning are you ready as an actor would be to go on stage? Or are you recovering from the night before? Or are you distracted by all the things going on in your life and not really connected to your day at the office? Attitude is the most important key indicator to telesales performance.

2. Do you sit up at your desk or do you slump into it and remain crumpled for most of the day? Posture and agility are indicators to performance

3. Are you even dressed as a successful person or sitting there with weekend clothes on, even a coat or baseball cap on? Dress and smartness is a key indicator to performance. Shoes or trainers? You decide but you know the answer. I have never known anyone who wears a coat in an office to survive more than a couple of weeks. Be warned. Dress properly for work.

4. Whatever time your day starts are you ready to start? Think of athletes toning up their muscles for the race ahead. Or is your desk a mess full of food, handbags, shopping and open social media? Preparedness is a key indicator to performance. Get to work early, please don't be the one rushing in with a minute to spare. People who do this consistently do it and it's a real sign that you don't even want to be there. Stop that behaviour now.

5. Do you have a morning meeting where the team discuss the order of the day and important strategies to be followed and generally encourage each other forwards? A meeting ensuring everyone is ready to give their best is an empowering part of daily preparation for phone work. Get one going even if you have to ask the boss to instigate it. It is one of the bigger indicators to a good day ahead. Everyone comes in ready and on time for the meeting.

6. Are you geared up to reply to emails with phone calls? Do you have any real idea how much more powerful a call is than email? Are you seriously looking at email and working out the best strategy and timing of a call back to advance this sale or appointment? Thinking straight is a key indicator to performance. Simply keeping the ping-pong of email going is the pits in a telephone sales office. Get some action going.

7. Is your head clear, is your voice clear, are your eyes and body alert for the mental gymnastics you will be doing for the day? If you are not in tune then snap out of that mood and really focus on your job please. Do not indulge in any negative gossip. Avoid the bad apple in the team and if you are the bad apple do please try and grow up. Otherwise you will be hitting the exit quickly in a well run office.

8. Check your enthusiasm. That's like a driver checking they have fuel and oil in the tank before setting off on a journey. Are you seriously geared up for that first call so that you hit the ground running and jump all the fences and maximise every opportunity thrown your way right from that first encounter with a new company, new lead, new person, new problem. Your golden client, the cornerstone of your month could be that first person you call today.

9. Are you in tune with your call backs and when and how they should be made? Have you encouraged all your potential clients to call you back and are you diarising them to call back especially where they have not taken your hint to call you back. A key element in all calls is to attempt to get the recipient to call you back. Ask around, ask me about this. It is a dynamite strategy.

10. The seat you occupy is valuable to the company. More and more companies are focusing on the value of the seat rather than the person occupying it. Be very careful and very mindful to stick to the suggestions given above. Continued employment is dependent upon results these days not who you are or what you say you know. It's all about results. Use the above as a template for the start of your day and generally you will have more success, more luck, more results and more income.

These ideas are not for you to be defensive about. They are what I learned to be essential and personal to longevity in a telephone sales office seat. Just turning up and shooting from the hip or turning up and not picking up the phone with expertise and enthusiasm will guarantee the loss of your seat at some point. Be the man or woman who gets it where what is required is provided by you each day. Be very competent.

Final point. Curries, heavy drinking etc and anything else that induce sickies are not allowed between Sunday and Thursday nights. Get yourself to work on time as if your job depended on it. And be very fit for the work. Passengers on your bus will be easily spotted.

None of the above check list is difficult. You know this and I know this. Just be professional and do it. I am often either thanked for this advice or totally ignored. The people who thank me are usually still in the job six months later. It's your choice.

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