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Making It Happen in 2024: Action Planning for a Successful New Year

Making It Happen in 2024: Action Planning for a Successful New Year


Isn’t it shocking that 64% of New Years resolutions will be abandoned after just one month? While it’s a dismal statistic, it’s also somewhat inevitable when you really think about it. We’re often told to “dream big” and “shoot for the stars” but having ‘big hairy audacious goals’ can sets us up for failure.

Wouldn’t it be wiser to set realistic, achievable and immediately actionable goals this year? Imagine the satisfaction of looking back at the start of the next year, knowing you've successfully adhered to your resolutions. Let's approach 2024 differently and make resolutions that we can truly resolve!

[CTA] Hear what our training team’s best sales resolutions are on the Luxury of Choice Podcast

Action planning is an approach that provides a structured framework for translating your goals into tangible actions. By breaking down your objectives into manageable steps, you can identify the specific actions required to succeed in achieving your 2024 goals.


Define what you want to develop

What action, activity, or skill do I need to develop?

Let’s start with something simple that every sales person wants to achieve: meeting (or even exceeding) target. Considering that your target is likely larger than last year and your existing customers have maintained their purchasing patterns over the past few years – indicating they aren't growing at a rate that ensures you'll hit your target – what actions, activities, or skills could you adopt or modify from last year to yield improved results?

In my experience, many sales people are terrible at picking up the phone. But, the phone is such a powerful sales tool and picking it up a bit more will definitely help you reach more customers and in turn, reach your sales target. Lets take this as an example for our action plan:


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How, when and where?

How, when, and where will I try to implement this new action, activity, or skill?

Now is the time to get specific.

Continuing with the previous example of increasing customer call volume, it’s important to consider when and how you will execute. Think about reaching out to someone within your organization who is great at customer calls —perhaps shadow them for an hour or seek their advice on your approach.

Then, importantly, schedule some dedicated time in your calendar and set a specific target for the number of calls you intend to make.


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Download a FREE action planning template



Evidence of Success

How and when will you notice that your new action improves your results?

The only way to judge whether or not you have achieved your target is to measure your achievement against success criteria. Consider what success look like and how you will measure the outcomes.

During your calls, you could aim to book face to face meetings or a follow-up call. In this case, your success metric could be the percentage of cold calls that result in an agreed scheduled meeting.


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Download a FREE action planning template



Successful completion

What did I learn and how will I continue to develop this set of skills?

Once you attain your goal, it’s important to reflect on what you have learned and how you can perpetuate your ongoing development.. Achieving a goal can lose its significance if the positive behaviour changes are not sustained – just ask anyone who lost 5 kg only to gain it back again after reverting back to old eating habits.

For example, you probably developed your active listening skills and learned some great questions to ask on call. Simultaneously, you might have recognised areas in your phone skills that still need some refinement; like developing your ability to secure a follow-up meeting. Reflecting on your achievements – as well as areas for improvement – will help you to build a growth orientated mindset and fostering continuous development.


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Download a FREE action planning template



Tips for implementing your action plan

It’s one thing writing down an action plan, but it’s another thing sticking to it! We’re a big fan of accountability partners; a colleague who can help you plan, stay motivated, remind you of your goals, and of course, keep you accountable. Research shows that the likelihood of sticking to your goal, promise, task or activity skyrockets (to up to 95%) if you have a specific accountability appointment with a person you’ve committed to.

They say that ‘what gets measured gets managed, and what gets managed gets done’. So make sure you consistently measure, monitor and review your progress; another area where an accountability partner can help. Keep checking to ensure that your plans are having the desired impact and if not, seek to change what you are doing. Indeed, sometimes we must change the plan, as many of us have had to when the COVID-19 pandemic struck! The acronym PDCA (Plan, Do, Check, and Act) is an extremely useful tool to stay on track.

Finally, acquiring or developing skills doesn’t just happen. While there might be someone in your organisation that can help or assist you, it’s no match for professional sales training. Our sales training open programs are specifically designed for those working in the science and technology industry and can help you set realistic goals as well as show you the skills you need to achieve them.


george james - open programmes - tactical selling skills

Tactical Selling Skills

If you’re new to sales, just started a new role or need a refresher, our tactical selling skills programs covers the fundamentals of great selling. You’ll learn how to navigate highly-competitive and the complex science and technology marketplace to ultimately win more sales – all while being less busy.



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Are your sales stagnating? Build on your foundational sales and commercial skills to generate more leads, deliver more accurate sales forecasts, better manage and win complex sales and more with our advanced strategic selling open program.





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Need more inspiration?


Why not give our podcast a listen Episode 11 - 10 Great New Year's Resolutions for Salespeople.  If you’re thinking about your professional resolutions and you’re not sure how to challenge yourself or you’re looking for a bit of inspiration, then tune in to the first episode of Luxury of Choice in 2024. Our training team are discussing the bad habits they want to kick, the good habits they want to adopt, and the goals they wish to achieve. 




Have a question about one of our services?


Not sold on sales training quite yet? If you want a little more information or just fancy a chat about our services, fill in the contact form or send us an email training@georgejamesltd.com and we’ll get right back to you. 


Or sometimes it’s easier to just pick up the phone and give us a call on: +44 (0) 1494 867655


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