The Importance of Small Changes

Friday, February 10 2023

With apologies to Richard Carlson who wrote Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff (and It’s All Small Stuff), I’d like to suggest that, in sales, the importance of small changes can be critical.

Now to be fair, I do agree that we shouldn’t get hung up on things that we can’t change. There’s no use exploding over traffic gridlock, construction, or spilled milk. An article in Psychology Today provides great insights in ways to avoid overreacting to the small stuff. But sometimes, the small stuff is critical.

The Importance of Small Changes

The difference between successful and unsuccessful salespeople in the same office is often just the small stuff. With the same product information, similar territories and opportunities, their results can differ dramatically because of the little things.

What little things make a difference? Consider these small modifications:

  • Increase your number of contacts with potential customers.
  • Increase your average sale size per customer.
  • Improve your ability to turn contacts into appointments.
  • Improve your ability to qualify prospects so you aren’t wasting your time.
  • Improve your ability to turn appointments into sales.

The Slight Edge

The Success Ratios chart below illustrates how the small stuff can make a big difference. Salespeople with a moderate, performance-based income of $75,000 can make significant changes in their personal income by making some small adjustments. Two extra phone calls per day increases their income by 17%, even if nothing else changes! Improving their ratio of phone calls to appointments by 3% increases income by 20%, and improving their ratio of appointments to sales by 8% increases their income by 40%!

But here’s the really exciting part – where the small stuff really counts. By increasing everything by only 2%, salespeople, on average, can increase their income by as much as 15%, and a 5% improvement can increase their income by 41%! Small stuff. Big results.

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