I am going to rescue an FA who should be prospering and is not. The resources I provide him will be posted online. If your troubles match his, you are welcome to use them.
CW has almost everything going for him. He has survived, 12 years so far. He is disciplined. He has an excellent work ethic. He has an engaging personality. He is passionate about his work.
The only thing standing between him and outstanding success is prospecting and selling. It’s all in the numbers he sent me below. This email prompted my decision to save him:
From week ending 10 August to week ending 9 November (14 weeks)
7,563 total calls spread out among:
6,740 cold calls, 481 avg per week
660 callbacks, 47 avg
163 client calls, 12 avg
553 contacts (I didn’t collect the numbers for the first week of 698 total calls but corrected that mistake in the subsequent weeks.)
48 cherries, 3 avg per week
19 greenies, 1 avg per week
16 prospect meetings set. 1.1 avg per week.
And 7 prospect meetings held. Or a .5 avg per week.
Zero financial plans or accounts opened.
Total hours spent as an SA [sales assistant]: 83.75 with a 6.44 per week average.
The first point of breakdown is “cherries per hour.” To extract this figure, we have to read between the lines a bit because the stat “Total hours spent as an SA” includes cold calling as well as call backs.
He says he is making 481 calls a week, and is averaging 6.44 hours a week as an SA. If the number of hours reported is correct, he has to be pounding out 100 dials an hour. He’s not. But let’s assume he is. That’s 4.8 hours spent cold calling per week yielding, on average, three cherries per week. So his “cherries per hour” stat is .62. Since no one does 100 calls/hour without a robotic dialer, the actual “cherries per hour” stat is much worse.
Assuming all his other numbers were in the “cold call success zone” (which they are not), to generate $5 million in 2014 will take 40 hours of cold calling a week plus another 21 hours of selling time. Clearly, this dawg don’t hunt.
The second point of breakdown is persuasion or selling or closing—call it what you will. Only half of the meetings he sets are sticking. And of those that do stick, not a single new client. Even if he were really tops at bringing the horse to water, if he cannot get the horse to drink, what’s the point?
To save CW, we have to improve prospecting and selling, simultaneously. There’s nothing new here. There are really only three reasons most FAs fail: work ethic, poor prospecting skills and poor selling skills. Work ethic is not it for CW.
Improve Selling Skills
CW needs to completely overhaul his sales procedure. To do that, I recommended he first buy and read How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling by Frank Bettger. First published in 1949, this is the best single book on sales that I know.
I also told him to download and read, “The Good Way to Sell.” This is a series of eight articles I wrote for Research in 2007. It’s what you do, each and every step, discovery to proposal writing to presentation to question answering to closing. According to me, “Sales is a step-by-step process designed to increase the prospect’s desire to the point it significantly outweighs fear of change.”
Hopefully, with these two assignments, CW’s selling skills will ratchet up enough for him to start closing leads generated from mass marketing. As we progress through this year, we will continue to work on selling skills, but if he reads and applies this material, he should start closing new clients.