If you're a direct sales leader with any size team at all, you've probably found yourself wondering who gets your time and how you stay connected with everyone on your team without losing your own life, business, or mind! The truth is, different people on your team will earn your time at different levels. No matter how big your team is, you need to figure out how to stay connected with everyone, and how to decide who qualifies for your one on one attention.
I recently supported a Virtual Academy client in defining this for herself. She was feeling overwhelmed by the demands on her time and guilty for not giving everyone on her team her personal attention. The problem was, she had a team of over 5000 people! To begin with, I helped her see that her expectations on herself were unrealistic. Then I outlined a three tiered system for first categorizing the members of her team, and then staying connected based on their place in her organization.
I'd like to share this simple system with you. It may support you if you often find yourself in the same boat as my client.
Tier #1 – Big Picture
This category is for anyone on your team who is breathing. Stop laughing, I'm not kidding. If they've signed up and paid their money, even if they've never even done a party, they need some attention from you. This tier truly encompasses your entire team and the communication at this level is equally as broad. It's a "one to many" approach. In other words, you reach them all in one action. It could be as simple as a monthly e-mail, mailed newsletter, e-zine, or conference call that's got basic training, recognition, and news from your home office. It's something that won't take much of your time but is important.
Tier #2 – Potential
This tier is for those representatives on your team who are working their business at some consistent level. They could be hobbyists or potential business builders but right now they're just consistently working. They need a little more input from you in order to step up and succeed at a higher level, but they aren't earning your one on one time yet.
Your communication here needs to allow them some access to you personally without spending a lot of one on one time coaching them. You could set up a private Facebook Group, post helpful articles there once a week or so, and answer questions a few times a week (if not daily). Again, this allows you to support several people at once without committing a lot of one on one time to them. I would open this group up to your entire organization. Those who are active there are the ones who may move into the next tier. If you choose, you could communicate and support them via e-mail but BE CAREFUL. You don't want them to have instant, all day access to you. Set up a special e-mail folder that you only check (at most) once a day.
Tier #3 – Personal
This is truly your elite tier. Those who get your time and energy in this tier are your true business builders. They are the individuals on your team who are showing up and working consistently and who have set goals and are taking action to move toward them. These are the handful of people you want to work with on weekly coaching calls and invite to come with you to your parties. These would also include your brand new representatives.
This is a very simple concept, but if you look at the list of people on your team (whether that's 10 or 1000), you should be able to easily separate the personal from the other two groups and possibly identify some potentials who could become personals at some point in the future. Most importantly, it lets you lose any guilt about who you should be giving your time to because you're consistently doing something for every tier to make sure they're getting the support they're earning.
One final thing. If you think of the hours you have in a week like a pie that you slice up, the first two tiers should take up no more than twenty-five to thirty percent of your pie, and the rest of it should be spent in the third tier. Make sure you take a hard look at how you're slicing up your pie and make adjustments if you need to.
So, I'm curious. Does this make sense to you and is it at all similar to what you're currently doing?
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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.