Financial Services Professionals: The Business of Busy-ness, is it Destroying Your Sales?
Did you know that the word “business” actually comes from the word “busy”?
Financial services sales offers us several ways of keeping busy. In fact, three types of activities fill everyone’s days – those which are income GENERATING … income CONSERVING … and income CONSUMING.
The challenge is staying focused on the right activities and in the financial services industry you are probably responsible for ALL three!
Income generating activities are the lifeblood of your business. They are where ALL the money comes from. Your sales are the result of this step well done.
In this category you will find all sorts of activities – prospecting … customer acquisition … marketing … research and development and that’s just a glimpse.
Income Conserving activities protect your hard earned money. Here is where you preserve your sales.
In this category you’ll find activities relating to being efficient, as well as anything that impacts good will and customer loyalty.
Income Consuming activities are a normal part of every business.
While many income consuming activities are necessary … unavoidable …important… perhaps mission-critical, most are simply a blatant waste of time and resources and eat away at your hard-earned profits.
Income consuming can be tough to evaluate , because on the surface they seem to be income generating or conserving. Whether it’s being dragged to and through another pointless meeting or policies and procedures that do nothing but complicate the simplest of tasks … or (fill in the blank with whatever drive you CRAZY), the average day is filled with things that are of little or no value to your business.
Nevertheless, activities that ARE of PARAMOUNT importance to your business can STILL be incoming consuming.
For example: let’s say a prospect wants your service and your friend refers them to you. You make an appointment, give them a presentation and they hire you. You then go back to the office to finish up paperwork and begin being of service.
While anyone in sales would probably argue the point, when they do the needs analysis and the paperwork, that is NOT income generating … it’s income CONSUMING. That does not mean it wasn’t important – it was CRITICAL in fact! But the income was actually generated by the salespersons marketing efforts. Everything that occurred AFTER the presentation became an expense in order to fulfill the agreement.
The salesperson can certainly help CONSERVE income by being professional and frugal with time. He even has the potential for GENERATING additional income by suggesting another product to the client – or by making such a positive impression that the client would eagerly recommend him to others – but the pure activity of providing the service is income CONSUMING.
If you would like to keep your busy-ness as profitable as possible, here are three ways to do it:
First, detach yourself emotionally from the assessment process so you can be objective and clear.
Second, examine your business and decide what percentage of time should be focussed on each category.
Third, decide what would be the ideal activity ratio at each level – and 100% income generating isn’t a realistic expectation!
Finally, instill in your team or yourself if you are the team, a fundamental respect for income – its generation, conservation and consumption. Every moment of every day should be governed by a simple question: “How is doing this going to affect my income?” The answer will dictate it’s priority.
Priority #1 – EVERY team member should take full advantage of every opportunity to perform something income generating.
Priority #2 – When not busy generating income, team members should seek out ways to conserve what has been gained.
Priority #3 – If an activity neither generates nor conserves income, it must be carefully evaluated for its income gobbling potential. If the activity is necessary, team members should strive to be as
efficient as possible. If it is simply a waste of resources, it should be avoided altogether.
Now, get out there and Do something with this information to increase your efficiency and sales – you’d hate for the time you’ve spent reading this to be income CONSUMING because you did nothing useful with it!