Your Daily Sales Plan

Our Sales Expert shows you how to increase sales by the hour.

By Danielle Kennedy

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Q: What's atypical day like in the life of a new small-business owner?

A: I receive thisquestion from many new business owners. There are certain routinetasks entrepreneurs need to accomplish every day. However, theproblem some new owners have is the tasks they're performingmay not be getting them closer to building a successful business.Entrepreneurs who succeed are focused on completing a specificdaily sales plan. Modify the following plan to fit your businessprospects-then watch your business grow. Here's a look atthe entrepreneur's daily plan for success:

5 a.m. Wake up, exercise andeat a healthy breakfast. Entrepreneurs are in training just likeathletes preparing for the Olympics. You need to be in good mentaland physical shape, so start your day in a healthy way.

6 a.m. Shower, dress andreview your daily plan. Remember, the early bird catches theworm.

6:45-7:45 a.m. Drive to theoffice. Listen to sales training tapes to get in a selling mood.(If you're homebased or live close to your office, beginbusiness development immediately.)

8-10 a.m. Businessdevelopment time. (Like exercise, you need to get prospecting outof the way early. Long term, you'll be glad you did.) If youhave salespeople, this is the time to make sure they'reprospecting. Note: Most new business owners can't afford tohire a salesperson right off the bat. That's OK: Doing ityourself gives you the opportunity to perfect the art ofprospecting. Then when your budget permits, you'll have thenecessary experience and skills to train your growing salesforce.

Here are some prospecting options to try:
Stuff mailers andwrite personal notes.
Write e-mails toleads or prospects from a targeted list.
Makelong-distance calls. Some businesses on the West Coast start theirprospecting calls at 6 a.m.
Follow up onleads.
If you musthandle all your incoming calls, learn to do two things at once, sowhen you're not speaking directly with a call-in or walk-incustomer, you're focused on any of the above options.

10:45 a.m.-1 p.m. Recruitinginterviews. If you're building a sales team, scheduleappointments in this time slot. No luncheon appointments,particularly on the first interview. Eat lunch alone and don'twaste time.

1-4 p.m. Plan A: Visit yourterritory of prospects. If you're training salespeople, takethem out in the territory and show them how to introduce themselvesand get a toe in the door.

Plan B: If you've completed your visits for the week, usethis time to check your books and make sure you're in closetouch with your spending, expenses and balances. As soon as you cansign up for online banking, do it. But never lose track of yourbooks. Business development and keeping an eye on the books are anew entrepreneur's two key priorities.

4-6 p.m. Answer phone calls,read mail and play catch-up for the day. Review your sales plan fortomorrow. Be sure you complete all necessary cycles of activity soyou can leave your desk clean and ready for a new day.

Danielle Kennedy is an authority on selling, developing apeak performance attitude and winning customers for life. Call herat (800) 848-8070 or visit for information onconsulting for your business.

The opinions expressed in this column arethose of the author, not of All answers areintended to be general in nature, without regard to specificgeographical areas or circumstances, and should only be relied uponafter consulting an appropriate expert, such as an attorney oraccountant.

Editor's Pick

This 61-Year-Old Grandma Who Made $35,000 in the Medical Field Now Earns 7 Figures in Retirement
A 'Quiet Promotion' Will Cost You a Lot — Use This Expert's 4-Step Strategy to Avoid It
3 Red Flags on Your LinkedIn Profile That Scare Clients Away
'Everyone Is Freaking Out.' What's Going On With Silicon Valley Bank? Federal Government Takes Control.

How to Detect a Liar in Seconds Using Nonverbal Communication

There are many ways to understand if someone is not honest with you. The following signs do not even require words and are all nonverbal queues.

Starting a Business

Selling Your Business? Do These 6 Things Right Now.

If you want the maximum price you need to make these moves before you do anything else.

Business News

Carnival Cruise Wants Passengers to Have Fun in the Sun — But Do This, and You'll Get Burned With a New $500 Fee

The cruise line's updated contract follows a spate of unruly guest behavior across the tourism industry.

Celebrity Entrepreneurs

'I Dreaded Falling in Love.' Rupert Murdoch Is Getting Hitched for the Fifth Time.

The 92-year-old media tycoon announces he will wed former San Francisco police chaplain Ann Lesley Smith.


5 Practical Strategies Founders Can Use to Improve Their Mental Health

Supporting your mental health is one of the most important investments you can make in your company. If you're unsure where to begin, choose one of these strategies and focus on implementing it in your everyday life.

Business News

What Does the Banking Crisis Mean for Startups and Small Business Owners?

Author, CPA and business owner Gene Marks break down everything entrepreneurs need to know about the impact of the SVB collapse.