Supporting your new recruits is even more important than making sales. Let me explain.
Industry insiders estimate that between 70 and 80 percent of new consultants or reps in direct sales companies don’t take any action after they join. This includes placing an order or doing any training.
That’s crazy. We need to improve that statistic!
Lack of support turns people off their new direct sales biz
Too many direct sellers focus on recruiting but don’t think beyond that about their role as a sponsor or mentor to the new person. They view their job as ‘done’ once someone has signed up. After all, the company or its upline leader provides training, and it’s up to the new person to make a go of it.
Sometimes the recruiting person doesn’t feel they know enough to mentor or support the new person, so they don’t.
I’m afraid I have to disagree with that mindset. Even someone brand new to the business can be a fantastic sponsor! They can either view it as exploring the new business with the new recruit (a great way to do it if a friend or family member signs up), or they can aim to be one small step ahead.
You do not have to be a direct sales expert to be a fabulous sponsor to a new recruit.
Most new consultants in any direct sales company have some combination of excitement and doubt when they sign up. They believed enough in the products and the opportunity you offered to spend money on a starter kit, yet they also often have serious doubts. They wonder if they can be successful and if they made a mistake signing up.
If they don’t hear from anyone quickly and receive quality support, they will probably mentally ‘check out’ before they’ve even started. Remember that statistic from the start of this article? That’s 70 to 80 percent of new recruits. If you miss the narrow window of their interest and motivation, it might be too little too late.
I often see people not supporting their team members because they ‘just joined for a personal discount.’ In many companies, these ‘personal shoppers’ can account for half a team. So many of them never place an order because it becomes too hard.
Here’s how that happens:
- They misplace their account login details
- They can’t remember the website to go to
- They don’t know who to contact for help (company support or upline)
- They don’t have a current catalog anymore
- And if by some miracle they work out how to log in, they don’t know how to use the ordering system, and it looks too complicated.
That’s six strikes, and they’re out. It’s all too hard.
Remove the barriers to engagement.
When you make it easy for these people by offering to help them enter an order (or refresh their memory if it’s been a while), you can often wholly engage them in the business. By nurturing them and helping them to make learning this new thing a little easier, even ‘personal shoppers’ can become valuable to your team as they enter regular orders.
And sometimes ‘personal shoppers’ become engaged and enthusiastic leaders. I’ve seen this happen quite a few times in my organization. First, someone joins as a ‘personal shopper’ and then starts to enjoy it a little more and grows their business just a little. Then, after another while, they recruit someone and start growing their team!
Once you make it part of your routine that when someone joins in removing as many barriers as possible to ease their entry into the business, you’ll be surprised by how many people will be active members of your team.
When new people join, the ‘welcome’ is vital! It needs to happen soon after joining; the more personal you can make this, the better. Remember that direct selling is a relationship business, not just relationships with your customers and hosts but also with your team.
Read this article on how to coach teamies on getting bookings.
I like to focus on the ‘bird in the hand, which is worth 2 in the bush’. Retaining a team member is easier than recruiting a new one. Imagine how much better our teams and our industry would be if we only had 20 to 30 percent of new consultants not take any action rather than that 70-80 percent currently!
I think we can, and we should do better!
Using the principles in this book, I built a global $20-million direct sales business.
In ‘Growing Your Direct Sales Team,’ I share my tried and tested methods from my 20 years in the industry.
My book has dozens of worksheets, checklists, and templates to get you on your road to success.