High value activities are the activities that produce your most important outcomes. These activities produce the results you are measured on, and they are the difference between success and failure.

Low value activities produce outcomes that, while still necessary, aren’t nearly as important. They don’t have any real impact on your success.

High Value Activities and Outcomes

The high value activities for salespeople include prospecting, nurturing dream clients, making sales calls, keeping their follow up commitments, and taking care of their existing client relationships. These high value activities produce the outcomes of opening relationships, developing opportunities, executing the sales process, winning deals, and owning the outcomes that they have sold their clients.

These high value activities must dominate your calendar. If they don’t, you won’t produce the outcomes that you need.

Low Value Activities and Outcomes

Low value activities are still important. But they don’t produce the sales outcomes you need. These activities include most of your email, most of your voicemails, much of your paperwork, updating your sales force automation, most of the RFPs you receive, some of your meetings, and some of your client calls.

These low value activities feel like work, but they aren’t really the work that produces the outcomes you need. In all likelihood, you are using these low value activities to avoid the activities that you most need to do.

That email doesn’t really require a response, at least not during your sacred sales time. That voicemail isn’t in any way urgent; it can wait. You can do your paper work between 4:30 and 5:00 PM (or at home, if you are a hustler). The only reason you are responding to the RFP is because you don’t have a solid pipeline.

You can’t allow your low value activities to crowd out your high value activities. In fact, you need to use your calendar to ensure that your high value activities crowd out your low value activities. By committing to your highest value activities, you ensure that your time and energy is invested where it provides the greatest returns. This simple change of focus will dramatically change your sales results for the better.

Invest your time in high value sales activities. Squeeze out just enough time for your low value activities. If you have to barely get some of your work done, don’t let that work be the work that really produces the results that you need.


What are the highest value activities for you as a salesperson?

What outcomes do the high value activities produce?

What are the low value activities for you as a salesperson?

What outcomes do these low value activities produce?

How do you ensure that the highest value activities dominate your calendar and command your time and attention?

How do you minimize the time you spend on low value activities?

Sales 2012
Post by Anthony Iannarino on July 20, 2012
Anthony Iannarino
Anthony Iannarino is a writer, an author of four books on the modern sales approach, an international speaker, and an entrepreneur. Anthony posts here daily.
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