Fear

Half asleep but with a look of fear still present in her eyes, Sandy stared into the bathroom mirror. Her right cheek displayed the remnants of pillow wrinkles and still revealed a telltale sign of the drool that escaped her mouth during the night as she slept. Sleep hadn't come easy for Sandy that entire weekend. In fact, this was the worst weekend she could remember having since her Grandmother passed away. Sandy looked into the mirror only to see an unsympathetic face filled with anxiety staring back at her.

"Just call in sick," she commanded to her own image in the mirror. "Better yet, why don't you just quit, that'll fix that Bozo of a boss. I'm the best Inside Sales person our company has. They'll miss me when I'm gone."

The coldness of the water on her hands coming from the faucet she had turned on brought Sandy's thoughts back to reality. She knew she couldn't "Just Quit." She was a single Mom and they paid her a good salary.

"Besides," she thought, "I've got ten years with this company. They shouldn't treat me this way. What am I going to do?"

What caused Sandy to be so upset? What caused her to lose so much sleep over the weekend? What filled her with anxiety and fear? What made her consider giving up a ten-year career as an Inside Sales person?

"MANDATORY OUTCALL"

Although this little story is fictional, many of your employees may have experienced or be experiencing these same exact feelings.

"FEAR OF MAKING PERSONAL CONTACT WITH THE UNKNOWN"

Outcall is an exceptionally good Marketing/Sales tool if it is done right. There is a lucky few that can just pick up the phone, make a cold call and it comes naturally to them. But for most of your employees, making that call is the most unpleasant and difficult task you could possibly ask them to do. It's actually unfair to send them onto the "Outcall Battlefield" without arming them with the proper weapons. Those weapons are generated through training. It's true that for some people Outcall is no big deal. It's also true that for some people no matter what you do, or how much training you provide, they just wont be able to do it successfully.

However, for the vast majority of the Inside Sales people and Call Center Agents employed in this country today, Outcall training can be extremely beneficial. A solid outcall program with trained personnel can provide a major impact to revenue and bottom line profits. Think about it. If you have only five inside sales people making ten outcalls per day, that totals 250 calls per week which equates to 1000 new proactive customer contacts per month.

It has been said: "You can send a gorilla out as a field sales rep and if he calls on enough people, sooner or later someone will pin an order to his chest and send him home."

With the sheer volume of contacts alone, sales have to increase. Think about the significant contribution your inside sales people can provide if they are trained and really know what they are doing. Add a new account bonus program to the formula and results can be astounding.

Dr. Rick Johnson (rick@ceostrategist.com) is the founder of CEO Strategist LLC. an experienced based firm specializing in Distribution. CEO Strategist LLC. works in an advisory capacity with distributor executives in board representation, executive coaching, team coaching and education and training to make the changes necessary to create or maintain competitive advantage. You can contact them by calling 352-750-0868, or visit http://www.ceostrategist.com for more information.

Rick received an MBA from Keller Graduate School in Chicago, Illinois and a Bachelor's degree in Operations Management from Capital University, Columbus Ohio. Rick recently completed his dissertation on Strategic Leadership and received his Ph.D. He’s also a published book author with four titles to his credit: “The Toolkit for Improved Business Performance in Wholesale Distribution,” the NWFA & NAFCD “Roadmap”, Lone Wolf-Lead Wolf—The Evolution of Sales” and a fiction novel about teenagers called “Shattered Innocence.”

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