A client contacted me recently about his cold calling department and their lack of motivation. Most of the staff had been with the firm for a number of years and while they were performing adequately, they were not motivated to bring in more business. This was becoming increasing apparent since his overhead was increasing while his sales were staying exactly the same. So he hired me to come in and perform a 10 week assessment of the situation and offer solutions for jumpstarting his campaign while motivating his staff. While I won’t bore you with the specific details of his situation, I will give you ten key tips to motivating your staff and breathing new life into your cold calling campaign. I will also offer myths that keep you from achieving those goals.
Myth: Cold callers work better on a” commission only basis”. So if they aren’t being paid salaries they will work harder to generate leads/appointments and therefore make more money since I’m paying based on results. Right?
Fact: Wrong. Here’s the problem. This may work out okay for you financially since you won’t be out of pocket unless they perform but there are a few holes in this strategy. First if you’re paying the cold caller by appointment, it becomes imperative that the sales person makes it to every meeting. While this seems a given, it has been my experience that salespeople can sometimes get so bogged down with sales calls that they tend to blow off anything they deem “ a waste of time”. If the sales person doesn’t show up for kept meetings then the cold caller doesn’t get paid despite the fact that it can take weeks to develop a qualified lead. And speaking of qualified leads the sales person may determine that the appointments or leads aren’t “qualified “and decide not to pay you. On the flip side, the cold caller may not be as motivated to work long hours to generate just the right lead/appointments all for a $100.00 per appointment which may or may not happen. Plus keeping track of appointments/leads and payments become a nightmare. (Don’t forget that the prospect may cancel the appointment and decide they won’t need the firm’s services for six months which means the cold caller may not get paid at all for that lead.) All in all the fact that you are paying a cold caller $500.00 per kept appointment becomes a moot point if the appointment doesn’t happen to begin with.
Solution: Pay a salary of about $18.00 per hour is standard depending on experience and commission. Commission really depends on what a good appointment is worth to you. And bonuses and raises are always a good thing.