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Best Practice for Sales People managing Customers? Need Help

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  • Best Practice for Sales People managing Customers? Need Help

    Can anyone help me with either experiences or best practices on the best method for implementing a GTD system for a sales person.
    I manage about 100 customers in Oklahoma and have approx 2-5 opportunities I'm working to close for each.
    We use for our CRM, so don't want to duplicate CRM functions and Opportunity managment, but I need to manage the process and tasks, projects for managing a sales to customer (complex , lasts 6 months on average and has 100's of meetings and tasks for each sale)

    I'm not sure how to code my GTD system. Should I make each customer a "project" and then have sub-projects for each Opportunity and then track tasks for each sub-project?

    I use an IPAD for most of my mobile connectivity and want to use a native Ipad app for tracking this while on the road (Thinking of Pocket Informant HD)

    Can anyone help on how to set up my system the best for a sales person managing multiple accounts?

    Thank you


  • #2
    I'm not a sales person, so I'm just throwing this in here: Is, in your world, a customer something that can be completed and done with? Or is it an ongoing relationship? Projects in GTD are outcomes that can be achieved within 6-12 months, which means that it could in your case be the opportunities, rather than the customers, that are the projects. That would then make your customers your Areas of Focus (20k level - one step up from the projects).


    • #3
      Hi Mark,

      I would recommend you watch the GTD & Sales webinar on GTD Connect:

      Some good nuggets in there about managing clients, from two seasoned sales professionals.


      • #4
        See also the thread on this forum "How do I manage an account with many clients?".

        As I see it, a client is not a project. A client is a human being (or a corporation, or etc.) You might have projects with the same names as your clients; and if you rarely need to associate more than one project with a client at the same time, you could give some of those other names such as maybe "Jones-2" etc.

        There may be more than one good way to arrange things. However, you can use your projects to help you visualize desirable outcomes by naming the projects after those outcomes, so every time you see the project name you visualize whatever it is, and possibly occasionally think up new solutions for it. The goal might not be "Jones", but "make Jones happy" or "solve Jones' floorspace problem" or something. Then you can look for a short enough name that expresses that idea.

        Talking as if a customer "is" a project may tend to lead to thinking of the customer as a project or thing or goal rather than as a human being.


        • #5
          Thank You

          Guys, thank you for the insight, First Area of Focus is a great idea, I didn't think of this and missed the bigger picture. Thank you!
          Also watching the video now.. didn't know it was there. Thank you again!


          • #6
            GTD and Sales-one thought

            I am in sales and am recently new to GTD and am still feeling my way on how to manage customers.

            A goal of my GTD practice is to incorporate the maintenance aspects of a CRM into my GTD system and not have to rely on a separate CRM altogether.

            My setup by the way is Microsoft outlook syncing with Toodledo online and mobile.

            The nature of my business is that I have about 10 major clients but I have set a realistic goal this year to engage 20 prospects (5 per quarter) and turn them into clients.

            So "engage Company x" is not really a project as it has no definitive desired outcome and may not have a deadline within a year.

            IN terms of GTD practices "Get company X as a client" IS a project by definition and I can I can assign legitimate next actions and notes with in my project folder.

            I still haven't decided how maintenance should be done with my existing clients maybe they are areas of focus or maybe they do not require overall tracking at all other than indiviual projects and initiatives. Perhaps a tag is all that is needed to I can look up at a glance what am I doing,/what have I done with Client Y...

            I would love to hear from other sales people to either confirm or hear other ideas on how this is approached and managed.