Welcome to our Newsletter! In here I will attempt to address some of the common concerns and questions that arise in the selection and hiring of good people in our industry. And today's tip: Motivation in Rough Waters

I get asked a lot of times about how to keep the motivation high on a good producer who may be struggling in a down market. I am told that the individual has most of the right skills, a good background of productivity, even stellar, at times. However, due to the current market conditions, the ability to make those quick hits, and continually run up the pipeline has gone away. Maybe you, too, have people who need to adjust to stay afloat in today's rough waters... But first, hear the story-

The market is like the tides, where all of us in our industry go fishing. In a good market, where things are much easier, even the less than talented 'fisherman' can do okay. The rocks are covered, the water is high, and the fish are plentiful. The solid producer has the chance to go stellar, a combination of good skills, market demand and a bit of luck. Now, as has happened at least four times in my 32 years, the market drops, and our tide drops, far, in this case, and the rocks are everywhere, the fish few and picky... Does this mean we change the way we recruit and sell?

Well, yes and no. The techniques are the same. If you cannot show honest value to a client or candidate, then your desk productivity will suffer, and more so in a weak market. But worse, if your fish have disappeared, as it sometimes seems, what is the answer? You guessed it, volume! Back, once again, to the days when you or your people started. Back then, the individual had to make a lot of noise to make up for mistakes as they learned their craft. It was not so much that the 'fish' were picky, they were simply careful about working with people they could trust. Over time, the skills come up, the volume drops, and the production remains high or grows, accordingly.

So, here we are in a similar situation. In this case, some of these contacts want to work with us, but many are, once again, very careful, and some of them are limited by their corporate philosophies or orders handed down, as in, "no hiring." Of course, the skilled recruiter or salesperson knows how to handle the objections, but notice, right now, the serious downturn in the ability to overcome objections? The percentages have slipped away. The answer, once again, is more volume. Talk to more people, make more calls, work more desk time.... Just like when we all started out.

Finally, then, how do you get a previously good performer to pick up the phone and make cold calls? You have to show them a reason why, and they have to see the results in a way they can understand. Sit down with them, go over these ideas, and start out looking for an extra two hours a day focused on new business, whether in recruiting or sales. Too often, our salespeople builds a nice network for the good market conditions, then anxiously churns that network in a bad market until they run out of time and money. An extra couple of hours, building momentum for a particular kind of NBD, both recruiting and marketing, will bring in more candidates and more clients, filling in some of the missing areas in a tough market, rough waters sea.

For those of you looking for an accountability system, download my Plan vs. Performance spread sheet and see if that will help. You can change the activities to measure, the goals and minimums, and so on. Do not change the information in the body, as those are automatically calculated. The business, now, is not so measurable by placements, as it is by activities. Sometimes, a great improvement in those activities will self motivate a producer to higher revenues and get them back on track...

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George W. Tucker, MS
        - Consultant-
The PEAC SYSTEM, INC

Finding 'Em, Training 'Em and Keeping 'Em

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