You Wanna Jump In A Prod Pod?

By Jeff McWilliams


When I was a kid, my parents had an ornament of sorts that hung on the cabinet in our kitchen called “Round Tuit.” It was a 6” in diameter black circle with yellow words that read: “This is a Round Tuit.” I always said I’d do it when I got a round tuit. Well, that time is now, no more excuses, this is my “Round Tuit.”

It took me a couple of years before I understood the humor behind that silly kitchen ornament. I was the kid who always cleaned my room, raked the yard without being told, and delivered the neighborhood newspapers on time. But, that’s a joke, this apple didn’t fall far from the tree “Yeah, Ma, I’ll do it when I get a Round Tuit!” 

If it’s worth doing, it’s probably worth scheduling. If it’s going on your calendar, it’s gonna take your time. And if time is money, it’s probably worth doing right. But, alas, we finally get to the point.

"If it’s worth doing, it’s probably worth scheduling."

Recently, Sales Coach, Bryan Neale of Blind Zebra, taught ACDI’s sales team about the concept of a Prod Pod, which is a Productivity Pod. By definition, it’s an intentional block of time to be productive on a specific topic. For instance: Demo Practice, Product Training, Pipeline Acceleration (move ‘em up or move ‘em out), and of course, Prospecting. 

Here are the rules:

Grab a Buddy – Accountability shoots up 10x when you work on whatever you need to accomplish by adding another person to the mix. So pick up your laptops and go to a room together. If that’s not possible because you’re remote, no worries, fire up a Zoom call so you can see each other to help stay on task. You’re both doing the same task btw. Congratulations on finding your first Prod Pod buddy. 

Keep it Brief – 30 to 45 minutes will force you to stay focused. Do whatever you can to eliminate distractions. Please put it on your calendar so your coworkers see you’re engaged, so you might get left alone for that 45 minutes. They’ll understand when you don’t reply immediately to an email. Put your phone down—Close out your chat sessions. No distractions. Did I say that already? 

Report In and Report Out – Declare your goals (Report In) for this prod pod at the start of your session.” I want to connect via LinkedIn with ten different Healthcare IT Professionals in Nashville.” Or “I’d like to update my five largest deals with detailed feedback, established Clear Future Dates, and commitments on Calls To Action.” (Ask me about CTAs with CFDs, and I’ll probably chew one of your ears completely off.)  In the end, Report Out. You’re leaving this session with a Done List. Did you hit your goal? It means more when you are forced to share your results with your Prod Pod Buddy. 

It’s that simple.
Grab a Buddy.
Schedule it and stay focused.
Share your goal at the start and report your accomplishments at the end. 

Got some clever additions to these rules? Please let me know what works for you. Also, if you have an interest in learning more about our sales team’s relationship with Blind Zebra, I’d be happy to share that as well. It might be an excellent fit for your team too.

Jeff McWilliams

Vice President of Sales

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