By David Searns
In staffing, sales can be tough – even demoralizing. Competition is fierce! If you're looking for ways to motivate and refocus salespeople and recruiters, here are a few ideas:
1. Break the monotony. Constant pressure to call, call, call is stressful and demotivating. Have the sales team take a day off, and schedule a creative brainstorming session to address the following questions:
o Why don't people perceive a need for staffing services?
o What issues (in their business) would create a need to hire – not a need for staffing, just a need for people?
o What are the top three challenges our clients and prospects are facing right now?
o What could we do to offer solutions to these problems?
2. Stop selling and start educating! Staffing and workforce solutions have become much more sophisticated over the past several years; options and solutions are more diverse than ever. Train your staff in educational selling, so they can teach customers and prospects:
o The ways in which staffing and recruiting can be more strategic
o Why, when and how to plan a staffing strategy and work with a staffing partner
When you make the sales team's focus to become evangelists for strategic staffing, they move from "commodity" to "business partner" in the customer's mind.
3. Spend more time training sales reps and recruiters to be talent consultants. Redefine their role from selling to finding solutions to human capital challenges.
4. Hold a sales team gripe session. Give everyone an opportunity to air all their frustrations with the market. Then, once the complaining stops, brainstorm answers to the question, "So what can we do about it?"
5. Find creative ways to add fun to each day. Hold small daily sales contests for most appointments set, most contacts made, or even the best rejection of the day.
6. Provide plenty of recognition for success, even small successes. To battle the constant rejection, create an overly positive atmosphere for every little win – whether it's an actual sale, breaking into a new prospect, or just successfully advancing the sales process.
7. Conduct market research. Rather than trying to connect with decision makers to sell staffing, try to meet with them to learn more about what is really going on in the market. Develop a survey to determine the biggest challenges and concerns your clients are facing, how they are planning to deal with the changes in the economy, and their perception of the value and role staffing companies should be playing.
8. Create a compelling presentation. Based on your research, develop a seminar, webinar, recorded video, eBook or whitepaper that offers great solutions and relevant information to address the biggest challenges your clients are having. Use the presentation as the basis for scheduling appointments.
9. Go social. Do more with social media to network and build relationships with decision makers and decision influencers in your community. LinkedIn and Facebook are powerful tools for strengthening your professional network, staying top of mind, starting conversations, educating (instead of merely selling) and positioning your firm as a thought leader.
10. Become a beacon of hope. People gravitate towards positive people. When your sales people are feeling beaten up by the market, it can be hard for them to remain positive and optimistic. Challenge your team to find "good news" stories about the local business community and then share those stories with clients and prospects. The more you can spread optimism (and good ideas), the more people will want to work with you.
This is, of course, not an exhaustive list of everything you can do to re-engage your sales team, but it should be plenty to get you going. And if you need help with making your sales and recruiting professionals more effective, check out what Haley Marketing can do for you!
About Haley Marketing Group
Haley Marketing provides website development, email and content marketing, social media marketing and strategy consulting to the staffing industry. We provide services to more than 1,400 staffing and recruiting firms throughout the world, ranging from solo recruiters to larger staffing and recruiting organizations with regional, national and international offices. Our mission is simple: to make great marketing more affordable!