Christmas lights

There’s no getting away from it – Christmas is now officially upon us and 2016 is very much just around the corner. While many workers will be getting excited about the upcoming festive break, for many small businesses it will be a difficult time where they reflect on how the company performed against targets, with many having to deal with a shortfall.

However, this needn’t be the case. There are still a few weeks to go, and with a strategic and focused push, you could be ending the year on a high – with an excellent foundation for the following year to boot.

Here are some tips that can help make the difference to whether you end the year feeling like a figurative scrooge or jolly Santa!

  • Respect yourself – the most important part of good sales is having the right mindset. So many businesses think of selling as a dirty job – they need to persuade customers into doing them a favour and buying their product or service. This ruins the power balance and ultimately leads to desperate selling. Think of it like a partnership – you are providing a customer with the ability to make their business better. You are adding value - otherwise they wouldn’t want it!
  • Upsell to current customers – it’s faster and easier to upsell to existing customers, who already believe in your proposition, than acquire new ones. Schedule some end of year catch ups and reviews and use it as an opportunity to identify additional needs and issues they are facing that you could address
  • Incentivise the team: Staff can sometimes get a little lazy in December as they hit ‘wind down’ time with the upcoming festivities. To keep the energy up you should consider motivating them by offering extra special Christmas gifts or a great location for the Christmas party if they hit targets
  • Keep it visual: To ensure that the targets are always front of mind it’s a good idea to put up a tracker that all staff can see, so that everyone can follow the success and see how much more needs to be done. Also consider getting things like bells that staff can ring when they close deals – it all helps to keep everyone focused and celebrate each other’s success!

By Shaun Thomson, CEO, Sandler Training in the UK