Your Direct Sales Career: Is Leadership For You?
If you’ve been in direct sales for any length of time you realize that one of the keys to a bigger paycheck is recruiting new team members. Deciding to become a leader isn’t a decision to take lightly. Your focus will likely shift a bit from booking shows and making sales (although this will ALWAYS be your bread & butter) to training your new team and if you become a huge recruiting success then you need to devote even more time to the nurturing of your team’s success. You know you want to make more money (and win more trips) but are you ready to be a successful leader?
The first thing you should do is examine yourself. Ask yourself some questions like:
- What areas am I strong in? Am I naturally social or am I more reserved and shy? If you are naturally social, then you won’t have a problem talking to people. However if you are naturally shy, then you will need to work on this. I recommend you take some classes or read some books on growing your self confidence.
- Am I organized and do I know how to prioritize my time? If you aren’t a naturally organized person, practice being organized. How do you do that? Watch some TV shows on organization or get some DVD’s that teach you how to organize. You can learn to be organized. If you’re horrible at prioritizing your time, you can learn how. Take some time management classes or have your up line teach you!
- Am I a good listener? A good listener is one who not only listens to others but they know what to listen to and what not to listen to. Don’t listen to gossip or negative talk! You don’t want to be bringing yourself down or others by allowing gossip or negative talk in your group. Learn how to politely stop it or step away from it or even turn the negative into positive.
- Am I an available leader? Will I make time for my clients and recruits? Or do I get annoyed if they call at unscheduled time with an urgent matter or emergency? Your recruit might be in the middle of a class and need an answer to a question right away that may make or break a sale. How will you handle that? You will need patience and understanding. Yes, you can learn to be patient, but you have to practice patience to learn it!
- How’s my attitude? Am I haughty or do I have a better than thou attitude? Or do I know that I make mistakes and so does everyone else? Do I quickly learn from my mistakes or do I let them get me down? If you allow your mistakes or mistakes of others for that matter bring you down and you have a defeatist attitude all the time, you won’t be a successful leader. There will always be someone somewhere that is going to point out your mistakes, just get over it, learn from it and move on. Don’t let a mistake stop you from reaching your goals!
Good leadership takes patience, strength, perseverance and a good attitude. Once you examine yourself, take a good look at the leaders around you and decide who you would most like to emulate. Talk to them and enter into a mentoring relationship with them. Follow the examples of good leadership and leave the rest behind.
Remember to focus on keeping your business afloat as well. Leadership is a time investment. It’s the difference between working your direct sales business part-time and full-time. You have to be ready. When you’ve made the decision to enter leadership do so with the mindset of being the best leader you can be. Congratulations and Good Luck!
photo credit: Wesley Fryer
Direct Sales: Tapping Your Warm Market For Business Growth
I just love sales lingo! “Warm market”, whoever thought of that term anyway?! Your warm market consists of the people who have a need for your product and are probably expecting a call from you.
Perhaps you got their name from your sales director because a consultant quit and that customer needs some TLC. Your warm market may be leads from previous users of the product or other people who have lost their consultant for whatever reason. Or perhaps, you know them personally, and they know you are now in business for yourself and are expecting you to ask them first.
Your warm market will be the “safest” place and one of the first places to get sales and bookings from, after your friends and family.
How do you tap that warm market? How do you find these people that love the product but don’t have a consultant? You know they are out there!
If you run out of people to talk to check with your sales director or up line leader. They probably have a list of customers from former consultants who have left the company. When you talk to your leader ask for some names of people, their phone numbers and what products they use or purchased in the past.
Once you have the list – get on the phone. Wondering what to say? Here is a sample script you can use for this scenario. Keep in mind, this is a person who loves the product and lost their consultant for whatever reason. There could be some bitterness toward the company, so tread lightly and find out how she is feeling about the company first then WOW! them with your wonderful customer service.
You: Hi Sally. My name is Mary, and I am a new consultant with Great Stuff for Your Skin. Do you have a minute? (Always ask this first! You don’t want to go into a long drawn out speech just to be shot down with “I’m busy right now”. Plus it’s embarrassing!)
Customer: Yeah, I do. (Of course we are having her say yes, but if she says no, then ask when would a good time be to call her back.) The baby is napping right now, so you called at the right time.
You: Oh good. Well as I understand you may be out of some Great Stuff for Your Skin products. Has anyone else gotten a hold of you since Jane left the company? (It’s always good ethics not to step on another consultants toes and some companies won’t allow you to “steal” a customer from another consultant.)
Customer: No, no one else has called me.
You: Well I have some new products for your skin type that you might love and I can bring you whatever you need now! When would be a good time to get together? (Keep it positive; don’t speak negatively about another consultant or the company.)
Customer: Oh this time in the afternoon is great when the baby is down for their nap. How about tomorrow? I am out of everything and nothing in the store compares to Great Stuff for Your Skin!
You: Great! I will be there tomorrow at 2:00! I’ll bring the products you’re out of now and the new items that just came out so you can try them as well.
See that wasn’t so bad, now was it? Just remember these simple points when calling your warm market:
- Ask if they are busy first
- Get a feel for how they are feeling about the company
- Find out their immediate needs
- Introduce new product
- Set up a time to meet
In the scenario above, Sally didn’t care about hosting a party for a discount or free product. She just wanted her product and wanted it now. However, if your new customer wants to host a party, then get that booking. In Sally’s case, after getting the product to her, you can ask her to have a few friends over so you can show them the new products too.
Tapping your warm market is easy and can be fun and very rewarding. Your warm market is probably the second place that most of your customers will come from; the first being your family and friends and their friends. So don’t hesitate in getting that list from your sales director and start making your warm market calls before someone else does.