Thursday, 29 March 2012

The 6 P's of sustained peak performance

 by Tony Vidler.

How to stay on top of your game, get the results that you want in business, and maintain peak all comes down to having a system, or a process.

The formula is - like all good things - a simple one. 6 P's become your process, and lead to sustained performance, instead of the frequent ups and downs of business that can be so demoralizing and stressful.

It all begins with marketing of course - and marketing is the main thing. I recall hearing from Winston Marsh once that "you have to be a better teller of what you do, than a doer of what you do". He is right - it doesn't matter how good you are if nobody knows it. And they won't necessarily come and find you just because you are great - unless you are one of the absolute elite at the top of the game with a truly international reputation and strong personal brand. But even those people are constantly marketing...

The point of this system is to stay focused on the daily activities that create value and generate business. It is a cycle that doesn't stop. And it all begins with marketing - every day.

Marketing should be a daily activity, not just an annual think-tank & planning session. Apply the strategy daily, and keep sending the message out to your target market continuously. For example: if your primary marketing strategy is to establish credibility and authority in a particular market niche and dominate that niche, then they need to see and hear from you continually - you have to be the voice that is listened to. A daily routine of providing content via Twitter and Facebook (both aimed at your target market), supporting your content and positioning on LinkedIn, might be your daily "promotion".

The next most important thing is to generate revenue. Constantly. It is the next most important focus, and you must be doing that, and working upon doing more of it, daily. No matter how nice the fee or commission for any particular piece of work, it will be gone in no time. (I've seen many spend it twice - the day they make the sale it is often spent in anticipation, and then again on the day the revenue actually arrives). You have to keep selling. Marketing isn't enough, as that just provides the opportunity to sell. Selling gets the dollars in the door - it needs constant focus. You might do this by ensuring that you are in front and presenting to "x" number of people per day.

You have to continually top up that sales funnel. There is no point in having a heap of well qualified prospects that you are not doing business with, and there is even less point in not doing business just because you are worried you will use up all your prospects. At a personal level - the prospecting part of any sales process - you have to be pitching daily. Pitching just means "tell your story" to people - not corner them, or try and sell them straight away. You know that the best clients come from a well established, trusted relationship, and that can only be built over time. Take the pressure out of the business by ensuring that you are talking to people each day who will be future clients - not today's sale. You might do this by ringing and talking to to "x" people per day who are at different points in the sales or relationship building process.

Look for an area to create just a little efficiency within your business each day. aim for 1% improvements daily - not giant leaps forward. Incremental process improvement is easy, and far more quickly than you would think it leads to a very efficient business machine. It is the same approach as the ant trying to eat the elephant....just one bite at a time. You might do this by standardizing one letter, or paragraph for reports, each day that you can use continuously to save time or make the job easier in the future. Keep building and refining proceses for a more efficient business.

Work on the business, even if it is just a little, each day. Some time with the staff, the key suppliers, the centres of influence, the financial management, analysis of marketing efforts - there are so many things to do and continually work on in building a great business. Work on it constantly in easily digestible chunks (remember the ant and the elephant? it is the same principle). The goal her is not "perfection", it is about continually perfecting and refining.

Every day, review the activity plan. Not the business plan as such, but work the diary for the days, weeks and months ahead. schedule the work, know who you are going to call, know where you are going next.

...then get on and promote....

This simple daily routine will keep the wheels turning in your business, and ensure that all the important components in building a great business are being worked on - while keeping the revenue coming in the door.

Attaining peak performance is simply a matter of having a good process that focuses your time and effort in the right proportions on the right things. Then being able to get into the routine (habit) of applying it.

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