As a Sales and Mindset Coach, author, part-time personal trainer and blogger, Kane Draper packs a lot into his world. But 10 years ago, as an award-winning business development manager across allied health, he hit somewhat of a crossroad in his career. With several account managers working underneath him, he came to realise he enjoyed the mentoring and coaching aspects of sales, rather than being a “hunter” type role. So he completed an MBA at UNSW and, following an opportunity to coach a couple of young entrepreneurs he met at UNSW, he began training them in a sixmonth course around sales coaching*.
“It was kind of a template to say, ‘Okay, you know what? It doesn’t really matter what industry, what product, what market, what business you’re in, there is a key framework around attitude in sales strategy in actually having that ultimate business success,” he says.
He then launched a blog, the purpose of which was to say “Sales isn’t all about skills. 80% of sales is about attitude.” “And if you can hire for attitude, the rest can be trained,” he adds. “So if you can get the right people on the bus, the rest will fall into place quite nicely.” Another focus for the blog was around productivity: “How can you be a more effective person via little changes to your daily routine? “So things about, for example, having a more plant-based diet, how can you get more time out of your day & meditative techniques; and all these little things that, to be honest with you, they were starting to work for me, so I wanted to put them out there to a wider audience,” he says.
An “influx” of positive feedback led to him expanding on the major themes and a book, Win the Morning Win the Day, followed.
With such a melting pot of skills and positivity, Kane is the perfect person to offer some tips around “winning the day” and setting oneself up for success through a structured routine.
Here are five of his most fail-proof tips:
Get your day on a page
How often do we open our eyes in the morning and think, “I’ve got so much to get through today!”? It’s being able to recognise what’s urgent versus what’s important and then prioritise that accordingly using a structured to-do list. So rather than just writing down 10 things that need to be done today —and naturally our subconscious will knock off the four or five easy ones first — give a time allocation for that list to say, “Okay, you know what, this is an absolute priority. This is urgent. I’ll do this between 8:45 AM and 9:20 AM, that’ll take me 45 minutes to do”.
Train your body
For 60 to 70% of the population, when you talk about training or exercise, people are like, “I need to put aside an hour for that, or I need to put aside 50 minutes for a Pilates class or a spin class”, whatever that might be. A section of my book details that all you need is 10 minutes a day. And the key to that when we talk about training your body is just to sweat. Get to the point where you sweat and get your heart rate up and pumping. It’s critically important. We need to consider health as our number one wealth.
Train your mind
Unfortunately when I talk about meditation to people, a lot of them still see it as a bit of a “woowoo” thing. But rather than “I’ve got to sit down on the side of a cliff with my legs crossed, my eyes closed and my thumb and middle finger clasped together and there’s all this Buddha music or these ringing bells in the background”, I say to a lot my clients to consider meditation as nothing more than calming your thoughts.
It’s about literally just putting aside 10 minutes every day to do absolutely nothing other than breathe. If you frame it in that fashion, rather than putting pressure on yourself to “go under”, people are far more likely to do it. A lot of people think meditation is all about having to focus. It’s not about that at all. It’s about being able to recognise that thoughts will come and go and being able to move them away and just focus on your breathing. The reason why this is so powerful for salespeople is that salespeople tend to work in the heat of the moment. So when they’re on the phone or sending emails and trying to win deals, hit targets, deliver KPIs and all this sort of thing you tend to get caught up in your thoughts and can put the blinkers on really quickly.
So the importance and the benefit that training your mind and meditating has is that it allows you to stop and think in the heat of the moment, and just get some clarity of thought around it. It’s a powerful, powerful thing and it costs us nothing.
Now, a lot of people will say “How is this even possible, we all have the same 24 hours “ But there’s two things in particular that I say about creating time. The first is when people have bad habits. For example, some people will return from lunch and for the next 20 minutes or so they’ll scroll social media, which is a common bad habit and one I was guilty of for a long time!
So one day I decided that the moment I’d come back from lunch, I’d write down the list of five people I need to call, and pick up my phone, I’ll get outside and I’ll go for a walk and I’ll make those five phone calls while I’m going for a walk. So it’s about finding ways to replace bad habits with something that adds value to you. The second thing is that if you think about a day in the life of any of us, it’s a combination of transitions. We go from sending emails over the course of 40 minutes and then we’ll transition into a meeting which goes for an hour, and then we’ll transition to our lunch break and then transition to two hours of project planning and so on and so forth until we finally find our way to bed by the end of the day. We lose a lot of time between those transitions. If we can find a way to ensure we maximise those transitions so we move from one activity to the next while trying not to waste that time, that alone might get us anywhere from 90 to 120 minutes a day.
Try a digital detox
A Cambridge university study found that 93% of all people never actually turn off their phone. So firstly; finding opportunities throughout the day, particularly when you go to bed, or after 7:30 pm, to turn your phone off, will help avoid the trigger to check social media before you do anything else for the day.
The second thing is to batch everything we do across the course of the day. A key thing I do is batch emails at the start of the day and the end of the day. I’ll put aside 45 minutes at the start of the day and 45 minutes, maybe mid-afternoon or towards the end of the day, where I batch those emails. We tend to be very reactive with emails, particularly when you have those notifications pop up in the bottom right of your laptop screen. The simple fact is; if we reconsider why we get an email, we can actually allocate that to the important, but not urgent, pile.
Obviously I need to be a little bit reactive if I receive phone calls, but I’ll also try and batch calls to clients. An hour at the start of the day, an hour at the end of the day. And the rest of my time is planning, it’s writing proposals, it’s creating content.
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