It’s 3 PM on a sunny and hot Friday in summer. Half of your sales team has been on “lunch runs” since noon and have basically checked out. The other half has already left for the weekend. To put it bluntly, sales is on holiday.
Image Credit: Wolfgang Lonien on Flickr
What’s going on here? They’ve bought into the “Friday Mindset.”
You know — the idea that since no one else is really working on a Friday, why should they bother to make calls? What’s the point of being productive when the weekend is only 8 hours away? No one actually expects them to work on Friday, right?
What about you? Should YOU buy into the Friday mindset?
Is there a “bad” day to make calls?
From a number of studies, it seems that there are generally “good” and “bad” days to make calls — to a degree. The Kellogg School of Management studied the experience of many sales professionals (accounting for millions of calls) and reported that Thursday is the best day to call and the hour between 8 AM and 9 AM is the best time to reach people on the phone. The worst time is right after lunch.
But here’s the thing. If you start saying to yourself that Thursday at 8 AM is the best time to make calls, you might lock yourself out of other opportunities. I’d say — yes, plan to make calls at that time, but aim to make calls whenever you have a chance. If your Friday afternoon is free, don’t squander it away looking at Facebook.
And if you’re not careful, buying into the Friday Mindset might mean that you start buying into the Monday Mindset (“Everyone is playing catch-up.”) or the Wednesday Mindset (“Middle of the week malaise.”). If Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays are all out for doing work, then you only have two days left. That’s a terrible (not to mention an unacceptable) plan.
So is there a “bad” day to make calls? Absolutely not.
A better way to plan your Fridays
Even if Friday might be a trickier day to make sales calls, you can still have a productive Friday (and encourage your whole team to have one too). Here are just a few ideas.
Take Your Customers Out
Friday is a great day to touch base with existing customers. Take them out for lunch, meet them on the golf course, bring them a cup of coffee — whatever it is, use the “Friday mindset” to show your appreciation to those already doing business with you.
A lot of people fall into the temptation of making Friday the “prep” day only to waste time. How do you avoid this trap? Accountability. Schedule a short weekly sales “end of week” meeting with your team to debrief the week and talk about next week’s opportunities.
Reorient Your Team
Maybe you need to join the mindset from time to time and plan a little team building. Schedule a sales basketball match or take everyone out for water ice. Celebrate the victories of the week. Show your team you appreciate them. If you give them this break every now and then while maintaining the expectation that they still need to work on Friday, maybe everyone will be more productive and motivated.
Seriously? Just Make the Call
When in doubt, just bite the bullet and make those calls. Even if you get, “This isn’t a good time,” you might be able to schedule a call for next week.
The weekend is there for a reason. Friday is still a work day — the same as Monday through Thursday. Find new ways to reinvigorate your team — and your own schedule — in order to utilize the full 40 (or 60) hour work week.
How do you stay motivated on Fridays? How do you keep your team motivated?
Do you disagree/agree with the above verdict?