Okay, so maybe it doesn’t happen on Monday. But you know what I’m talking about. That hour of your week where you have to explain to your manager everything you are working on, what you expect to close, and why you aren’t exactly hitting your numbers. (Even if you are hitting your numbers, this is still relevant. Keep reading!)

It’s something you all dread. No one likes to feel like they are being micro-managed or watched for any and every time they miss the mark. Why aren’t you prospecting for new business? Why aren’t you entering your notes into the CRM? Why isn’t your pipeline more robust?

What if, instead of viewing this hour of your week with dread and bated breath, you used it as an exercise for your own personal development? A roadmap for staying on task, thinking critically about your sales strategy, and filling your bank account with commission? Yup – sounds so good. Consider how awesome it would be if you were so proactive with your calendar and territory that your manager had nothing but praise for you on that Monday morning phone call.

Are you in?

The first thing you need to do, if you haven’t already done it, is take your annual goals and break them down by week. It will help to keep you focused and on track down to the granular details.

Review last week:

1.   Did you work towards getting additional business from any existing clients?

2.   Did you spend time prospecting in person or over the phone?

3.   Did you meet with anyone from your network to share referrals?

4.   Did you ask any of your clients for referrals?

5.   Did you use your time wisely to maintain your existing accounts and ensure your pipeline is full and moving?

Consider the new opportunities you uncovered last week and make sure you have a scheduled next step in place.

Consider both highlights from the week and things that were challenging as well.

Consider what you could have done better. Push yourself. Challenge yourself. (Imagine what you could do with an extra bonus…)

Prep next week:

1.   Decide which clients are ripe for additional business.

2.   Determine who you will target for new business development.

3.   Look through your network (LinkedIn) for people who sell something different into the same industries you do. Find time to buy them a cup of coffee…

4.   Plan for any upcoming meetings and sales calls. At a minimum, decide what you want to get out of those calls and ask questions to get you there.

5.   SCHEDULE YOUR TIME! Don’t go into your upcoming week without blocks of time for all critical activities.

Consider your overall goals for the upcoming week. Don’t limit yourself to number of dials, number of appointments, or number of orders. Think bigger. Do something that will make you a better sales professional.

Consider how many new opportunities you’d like to uncover and what it will take to make that happen.

Consider any challenges you might face and what you can do to plan for and mitigate them.

No sugar coating here. This takes some time. Especially the first time you sit down to do it. It does get easier. It will help you to think critically and be better positioned to build your network and fill your pipeline. Chances are you will close more deals and make more money.

And you know what else?

Those Monday morning meetings will be one of the best hours of your week.