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Self Care for Busy Direct Sellers

rock-stackLast week was one of those weeks in my business when I literally was so busy I forgot to eat. I’m not kidding. One day I looked up from my computer and it was 3:00 in the afternoon. I hadn’t eaten since about 5:30 in the morning, when I had about 8 ounces of a protein shake. I’d been saying for the previous four hours, “I’ve got to stop and eat” and then kept right on working, trying to keep up with the huge “to do” list I had. I was getting ready to launch a brand new program with a free webinar (happening today if you’re interested) and had a huge to-do list.

 

Being self-employed is wonderful and has lots of benefits, but what I’ve found is that one of the major downfalls of working from home (especially for women), is forgetting to take care of ourselves. You’ve heard the analogy about putting on your own oxygen mask before anyone else’s, right? What that teaches us is that when you neglect something as basic as eating (or taking the time to actually run to the bathroom and pee), something’s seriously wrong with the harmony in your life.

 

We all know why it happens (too much to do in your direct sales business, chores that keep piling up, sick kids, etc.). The question is, what can you do about it? One thing I can tell you from experience, the demands on your time probably won’t be changing any time soon. Especially with the busy Fall and holiday selling seasons in your direct sales business just around the corner.

 

That means you’ve got to make a commitment to do a little for yourself, regardless of what you’ve got on your plate, at least once a week. Period. Without fail.

 

Here’s why… When you don’t take care of yourself, you get grumpy (and you know as well as I do that’s the nice word for it), you get overwhelmed, and you actually accomplish less. You can’t make a withdrawal from an account that’s already overdrawn. You simply MUST decide what you can do for yourself once in a while to make a deposit back into your emotional bank account. It doesn’t have to be huge but, like I tell my clients, shaving under your arms doesn’t count either.

 

Me? I walk away from the computer, watch a funny show on TV, (God bless my DVR!), or go outside and prune my roses. I go to Starbucks for a rare Carmel Macchiato and wander through our lovely, small-town down town. I drop in and get a pedicure or just take 15 minutes and sit and listen to the birds. I also listen to music. That can change my mood and add to my account faster than anything else. It doesn’t have to be anything huge. Just something that’s all mine, and just for me. Especially lately, since now I’m dealing with my husband’s cancer, it’s more important than ever.

 

The point is, when I actually take the time to recharge my batteries, everyone wins.

 

What are your thoughts, and what do you do for yourself when you get overdrawn?

 

Step into Fall with a fresh start in your direct sales business! Grab my “Direct Sales Starter Kit” to kick start your plan. It’s yours for free when you subscribe to my mailing list. Already a member? My system won’t add you twice, so go ahead and grab the starter kit anyhow. Click here to subscribe to my mailing list.



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Julie Anne Jones is a direct sales corporate consultant, coach, and trainer, and the CEO of Julie Anne Jones, Inc. She is known for her authentic and easy-to-use scripting and specializes in specific systems, language, and tools for success in direct sales. To learn more about Julie Anne and her products and services, and to read her weekly blog posts, visit her at www.julieannejones.com.

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Three Steps to Eliminating Home Party Cancellations

 

Eliminating-party-cancellations

Last week I wrote about how to help your hosts fill up their living rooms with guests during this all important Fall selling season. I got a few questions about how (and why) to motivate your host so I thought I'd write a follow up post on that topic this week. 

 

In the home party plan industry, bookings are your business. It's not always easy to get them, and once you have them, it's often challenging to hold on to them. The key to making sure those precious bookings don't fall off your calendar once you add them is to make sure you set those hosts up, from the very beginning, with an intentional three step plan.

 

Before you offer these three steps, make sure you tie the activity associated with them to something of value. Some representatives offer an extra incentive gift to get their hosts committed, which is fine, but I've found that simply saying to your new host, "Let me tell you exactly what you need to do in order to receive all of the host specials, gifts, and goodies I talked about during the party tonight. It's really as easy as 3 simple steps" is usually enough incentive. That way, that host knows not only what to do, but why she's doing it (in order to earn all the goodies and have a successful party).

 

So, here is this simple 3 step process:

 

Step #1 – Have your host choose her date within 30 – 45 days

 

This is pretty simple if you're using party date cards to show them the dates you're available. Don't offer them any dates further than six weeks from that night. I've found that people generally take the path of least resistance if it's offered to them, and if you tell them "These are the dates I'm available," most will choose one of the offered dates. Believe me, booking more than six weeks out dramatically increases the chances that the party will cancel.

 

Step #2 – Let your host know you'll need to get a guest list and postage from them within 7 days

 

 This list solidifies their commitment to you and to their party. It's often the task they least enjoy doing, so the element of "eating that frog" and getting it over with will many times eliminate cancellations because they can check this task off their list. Plus, if you have the list and postage and are mailing their invitations out for them, you have an insurance policy against cancellations (because once you mail the invitations 7-10 days prior to their party, they're obligated to hold the party). This practice alone will increase the percentage of booked parties that actually hold more than you can imagine.

 

Step #3 – Set a date with your new host for the two of you to meet within the next week to plan her party

 

This meeting can happen either over the phone or in person, but it should be a solid date on both of your calendars and the host should be aware that you'll need her undivided attention for at least 20 – 30 minutes. Let her know she can bring her guest list and postage to this appointment (if it's in person) as well. This is non-negotiable. If a host won't agree to give you 20 minutes of her time within the next week, you have no business expecting her to put any effort whatsoever into her actual party. If she won't agree to this, my advice would be to pass on booking the party with her.

 

Three easy steps tied to the great value of all the host benefits and specials. It's that simple. The key to success in using this system is make sure you have your language for sharing these requirements clearly scripted out and practiced and that you use it with every single party you book, whether that's at a party or over the phone. No exceptions, every single time.

 

Ready for a fresh start in your direct sales business? Grab my "Direct Sales Starter Kit" to kick start your plan. It's yours for free when you subscribe to my mailing list. Already a member? My system won't add you twice, so go ahead and grab the starter kit anyhow. Click here to subscribe to my mailing list.

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN PRINT OR ONLINE?

You may, as long as you do not alter it and include the following information (with active links as appropriate)

Julie Anne Jones is a direct sales corporate consultant, coach, and trainer, and the CEO of Julie Anne Jones, Inc. She is known for her authentic and easy-to-use scripting and specializes in specific systems, language, and tools for success in direct sales. To learn more about Julie Anne and her products and services, and to read her weekly blog posts, visit her at www.julieannejones.com.

 

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6 Fabulous Tips for Increasing Attendance at Your Fall Home Parties

 

Fall-attendanceIf you've been waiting all Summer to take your business seriously again, it's TIME! Fall is upon us and I hope your calendar is filled with bookings. Now to make sure those bookings are paying off for you. The thing is, a large part of your success from those Fall parties relies on the host having a living room full of guests. So the million dollar question is, how do you support your hosts to make that happen?

 

Here are six of my best ideas:

  1. Make sure your host chooses a theme. I always ask participants at my live events, "Would you rather attend a bread and water party or a Mexican Fiesta?" Get it? A theme says "Come party with me" not "come to my house and make sure you bring your checkbook."
     
  2. Get a guest list and postage from every host, NO MATTER WHAT! This not only assures that you'll a list so you can send out the invitations (it's pretty hard to attend a party if you don't have an invitation), but more importantly, it solidifies your host's connection to you and her commitment to the party. It's the task most people hate to do the most, so having her get it done first thing ("Eat that frog" anyone?) makes it more likely that she'll actually get it done. Plus (and this is the most important part), you'll have a virtual insurance policy against that party cancelling if you have the guest list and you mail the invitations.
     
  3. Create and send a fun, compelling invitation that features that theme. And no, your company's simple postcard invitations really don't count. Honestly, think of your reaction the last time you received a postcard invitation in the mail to another home party. How excited were you to attend? See what I mean? (You can download our "Margaritaville" themed invitation for free on our free tools page on the website here).
     
  4. Create a relationship with your host prior to her party. Host coaching is the key to success in your party plan business. Period. Your host will work hard at promoting your party and making it a success if she feels a connection with you and likes you. And a nice added perk to host coaching is that, if you're offering your opportunity to your host as part of that experience, you'll generally sponsor 1 out of every 8 or so hosts with whom you work.
     
  5. Give your host clear instructions. This is so important. I say all the time people won't open their mouths if they don't know what to say. And I've found that people generally do what they're told. So give your host a goal to make follow up calls at least two days prior to her party and do a little role playing that shares some enthusiastic language about how much fun the theme is going to be so she knows what to say. Some consultants even take on this task for their hosts. Just make sure it's getting done.
     
  6. Follow-up often. Believe it or not, your party isn't as big a priority for your host as it is for you. And you want them to understand that you're there to support them. So make a follow-up call about a week prior to the party, just to touch bases and share your excitement for her upcoming party. Then follow-up at least two days prior to the party to remind her to make follow-up calls, as well as the day before the party to make final plans.

What about you? What are some of your ideas?

 

Ready for a fresh start in your direct sales business? Grab my "Direct Sales Starter Kit" to kick start your plan. It's yours for free when you subscribe to my mailing list. Already a member? My system won't add you twice, so go ahead and grab the starter kit anyhow. Click here to subscribe to my mailing list.



WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE FOR FREE IN PRINT OR ONLINE

You may, as long as you do not alter it and include the following information (with active links as appropriate):

Julie Anne Jones is a direct sales corporate consultant, coach, and trainer, and the CEO of Julie Anne Jones, Inc. She is known for her authentic and easy-to-use scripting and specializes in specific systems, language, and tools for success in direct sales. To learn more about Julie Anne and her products and services, and to read her weekly blog posts, visit her at www.julieannejones.com.

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