Monday, June 28, 2010

Diary Of A Newbie Saleswoman

I like the quietness of this Google blog. I'm so happy for my few friends who have signed on officially as Google Followers. Yay! Sorry I have had trouble becoming your follower, too! The truth is, I'm so freaking busy, I hardly have time to read anything that isn't headline and local (like the stories about the tornado's that've been blasting through Michigan this year! Dang. Whatsuup with that?).

Writing helps me organize my thoughts. This career change is getting STRESSFUL and fascinating. It's make-it-or-break-it time, babies! Seriously -- if things don't start really picking up steam in the next six weeks, this probably isn't the right career for me. But I'm like the little red engine (not Shel Silverstien's little blue engine that went smash, crash, bash into engine hash on the rocks below). You know -- I think I can; I think I CAN; I THINK I CAN!!!

I think it will be helpful to me and perhaps interesting to you, to approach this blogging project as a diary for awhile -- maybe for the rest of this project. I'll just recount the successes and failures of the day and set some goals for the next day.

So here goes....

I went out with a veteran agent today -- nice guy, graduated in 1986 from a northwest Detroit High School that's now closed, goes to a big non-denominational church, has a grown son, lots of good friends, a girlfriend with an eight-year-old son, likes to do yard work. He was really helpful. I didn't ask if I could use his name, so I won't. But I'll just say that he had a very nice approach with the business owners we came in contact with -- informative and very assertive in a chill way. I've worked with some other veteran agents and my district sales coordinator and they have some great ways of approaching situations, too. I think this guy's personality is a bit more like mine, though -- maybe because of our similarity in age or the fact that we were both born in Detroit. I don't know. But I think he's going to help me kick up my sales quite a bit and I appreciate it.

He's opened a lot of salon groups and today he helped me iron out the details of a salon enrollment that's happening on Wednesday. Seven people work there and I am hoping to sell something to everyone. They all would benefit from our insurance products, I wholeheartedly believe that! He's going to be there with me for the enrollment. He also helped me secure an enrollment for mid-July with a hardware store owner who I had spoken with in the past. He had been very positive about the idea of the insurance products I sell but he had thought I was pushing him a little too much for the enrollment date. The veteran agent worked wonders with him. He seems very pleased with the arrangement we made to hang out in his break room for a few hours on two days and see his employees one on one.

I'm finding I really love small-business owners. I especially respect anyone who has opened a business in the middle of the recession. The hardware-store owner and salon owner both are new business owners. The salon has been open only a few months and the hardware store for two years. I really respect that!It inspires me because I am not just an insurance saleswoman but a small business owner. There's so much to learn that it can feel overwhelming. But I'm getting good mentorship. People who have walked this road before me are being pretty patient with me.

One thing that didn't happen today was a meeting with a second salon owner who I thought we could schedule an enrollment with. She had had lots of questions about rates and product when I met with her a week ago and since the veteran agent who I worked with today has lots of experience with salons, I was hoping we would be able to meet with her. Her salon is closed on Mondays, though. So that didn't work.

I'll be by myself tomorrow.

My goal is to get to the gym at 6 a.m. and to go for a morning swim. I haven't been to the gym ONCE since I began this sales career and I feel it would help me so much to start the day with exercise. I want to be out and about following up with business owners by 7:15 a.m. I don't want to mention the specific businesses I plan to call on until I have met with the business owners because there are other agents who may read this blog and try to steal my deals. That's the world of business. We're all independent -- like Realtors.

Concrete goal for tomorrow: I want to get another new group and schedule enrollments this week for Thursday and Friday. This week is the end of what we call "Power Weeks." My district sales coordinator wants me to really push it to try to sell $14,000 -$15,000 in premium this week. That's a tall order. Yearly to date I am under $13,000. But I've learned so much in the past few weeks and I have a computer that works quite well. So, I could do it.

I think I can! I think I can. I think I can!

I'll keep you posted!

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