Is 25/5 Rule Any Good For Sales?

There’s plenty of tips on focus and prioritisation like this one. Inc Magazine are going through a phase where they like to place the words ’emotional intelligence’ into as many clickbait headings as they can. Still…

The general thrust of the 25/5 Rule is that you write down your current goals. All twenty-five of them. Then circle just your Top Five. They’re the ones you focus on. No distractions. Laser-in on these alone.

The aforementioned article’s final sign-off line is useful;

switch your focus from what you could be working on to what you should be working on.

The volumes are not necessary stringent. The ratios though are.

From the famed Pareto devotees of 80/20 folklore, to those self-publicising business gurus suggesting such as ‘pick only 3’, many such slants exist.

I myself have been in meetings where a group assess their current ideas, plans or tasks required. Let’s say they trot out ten. Then, they deliberately choose only the top three to work on until the next scheduled review meeting.

This perhaps grew out of environments where a mixture of operational demands and urgent/important distinction are daily constraints.

Yet it can also hold true that if a salesperson has twenty-five items on their to-do list, then they’ve probably got too much on their plate. That’s for sure. Spreading ourselves too thin is noticed by prospects. We’d damage ourselves.

When it comes to our own listing of potential business, we may well have twenty-five names on it.

But would you select only the ‘top five’ on which to work?

Then there’s definition to further wrap us in chains.

Is ‘top’ merely synonym for ‘biggest’?

I hope not.

I’d suggest ‘top’ should mean those that are closest to our ideal prospect profile.

Which is not governed solely by size factors.

Indeed, greater weight ought be given to non-spec traits. Away from facts ‘n figures. Embracing instead the whys and hows. Psychographics, not demographics.

The emotions, manner of thinking, proclivity to share your vision. These better shape your success.

Especially their willingness, preference even, to follow your process.

Away from typical deal flags, is this framework useful for an element of our selling?

One that transcends mere account by account, line by line on our forecast?

Think horizontal as opposed to vertical. A theme weaving throughout the chronology.

What threads are your top goals for the Sales year?

To break into a specific sector? Work on a sole client problem? Gain foothold in certain companies? Focus on a type of deal breakdown? Insist on CEO open doors? Insist on cross-sell appeal? Court referenceable business? Only sell standard, un-tailored packaged offering? Pursue those who have bought something else specific in the past?

Choose only those two or three that will underpin sustainable, repeatable success. The discipline, however much it may feel brutal at first, may well pay handsomely. And sooner than you’d imagine too.

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