end of year panicIt’s almost here. The end of another year.

The calls and emails I’ve been receiving from people in a panic have sky-rocketed.

I realize it’s late in the year, but despite how little time is left, there is still no reason to panic.

If you panic, you will most likely find yourself making decisions you will regret — maybe not immediately, but certainly sometime early next year.

Here is my list of 5 ways to avoid the year-end panic:

1. Hold firm on pricing.

As tempting as it might be to offer discounts right now to make a number, doing so can create huge issues if you expect to get any repeat business from them next year.

Year-end discounts send a message not only to your customers, but also to your prospects, that the best way to get a deal is to wait.  As soon as you become known for that, you’re in trouble.

2. Double-check your company’s ability to process orders.

Nothing will create more panic for a salesperson than getting the year-end order, only to find your company unable to process it.

3. Monitor your customer’s hours/days of operations.

Don’t allow yourself to suddenly find the customer to whom you’re looking to ship the year-end order closed for the holidays.  Every year I hear from salespeople in January who are complaining about how their previous year’s bonus/commission got cut because orders they had were never received by the customer.

4. Keep working the phones, contacting your customers and prospects.

Now more than ever is a phone call the right approach.  Emails can and will get lost.  If you’re chasing business, then people need to know you’re out there and making things happen.

5. Finally, be ready for surprises.

Yes, the phone will ring, and the last thing you want to do is not answer the call or be too slow to respond to a customer looking for the last minute order.

If you’re in a commodity type of replenishment business, this can be huge because many of your competitors may shut down for a few days and you want to be the one to pick up their business.

Use this time of year as a sales gift to you and your company.

While competitors start slacking off for the holidays, you can be the one to pick up their business and make customers happy.

Copyright 2013, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog.

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