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, right? We really need to improve that statistic!
Lack of support turns people off their new direct sales biz
Too many direct sellers are focused 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 their upline leader provides training and it’s up to the new person to make a go of it.
Sometimes the person recruiting doesn’t feel they know enough to mentor or support the new person and so they don’t.
I completely disagree with that mindset. Even someone who is brand new to the business themselves can be a wonderful sponsor! They can either view it as exploring the new business together with the new recruit (that’s a great way to do it if a friend or family member signs up), or they can aim to just be 1 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 perhaps 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 come across people who aren’t 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 do work out how to login, they don’t know how to use the ordering system and it looks too complicated.
That’s 6 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 completely 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 own organization. Someone joins as a ‘personal shopper’ and then starts to enjoy it a little more and grows their business just a little. After another while they recruit someone and start growing their own team!
Once you make it part of your routine that when someone joins to remove as many barriers as you can 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 and 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.
For tips on how to get your new teamie off to a good start, check this article.
I personally like to focus on the ‘bird in the hand, which is worth 2 in the bush’. Retaining a team members is easier than recruiting a new one. Imagine how much better our teams and our industry as a whole 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!