Thursday, 20 July
Today's Topic
Q4 Planning

Skill

Your customers planned their Q4 strategies months ago. This doesn’t mean their buying was done months ago, but it means they know what they want for Q4 so you can ramp up your attack plan now.

Succeeding in sales means good preparation, planning, and consistent perseverance. And because calendar Q4 starts in 70 days, today is a good planning day.

No matter the selling cycle length or your company’s fiscal year, October, November, and December are special months for sellers. For most companies, 60% of business is transacted in the last 25% of the calendar year, which means you should start thinking now about managing your time, your clients, and your business in Q4.

Every calendar quarter is important, but Q4 deserves special attention. Most revenue is booked in the last three months of the year, but even if that’s not the case for you and your company, there are seasonal forces you should think about.

And, everyone takes vacations in summer (and some, while working, perform as if they’re entering their senior year in high school).

Marshaling the labor and resources to attend to your Q4 planning and strategy needs might be more challenging this time of year. Remember, after the end of summer in late August, time moves at double speed. Generating action from inside your org – and with your customers – will take more effort and may progress slowly. Prepare for it now.

Do

Planning your Q4 strategy is largely based on mobilizing your internal resources. Start now because vacation season is in full swing and you need your work friends to help you.

Review your top accounts and think about each in terms of what an ideal Q4 looks like. Today, look at these accounts through a Q4 filter.

Given this 70-day mark until the start of calendar Q4, what action items do you need to accomplish in the next few weeks to prepare for the end of the year? Specifically, who in your org is key to helping you execute in Q4?

Line them up now! Make a list of what you need from whom, and prep them today. (Or at least get on their calendars in the next week to prep them.)

Focusing on Q4 requires a lot of work inside your calendar. Mobilizing your org to help support your big Q4 push is key to whether you’ll

Review this checklist of resource criteria now to be prepared for Q4:
1. Resources: what resources do you need to support your Q4 selling efforts? These resources could include labor, action, or tangible goods. What specifically are they, and what do you need to do today to alert the company to your needs?
2. Support: Who holds the keys inside the org to get you what you need for your big Q4? Sometimes this is not only labor, but it includes getting the company to spend money to support your sales efforts. It may also require management approval in some places.
3. Calendar milestones: What milestones need to be addressed now? In other words, do you need to reserve space or resources to support you?

All of the above focus on internal resources and planning, but you also need to think about information and activity from your customers to serve them. Don’t assume your buyers know all that you need to do to support their Q4 initiatives; prepare now to get the information you need from them so you aren’t caught flat-footed.

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June 22 - 23

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June 21

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"If we are going to be part of the solution, we have to engage the problems." -Majora Carter

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