Training Sales Representatives has been one of the most rewarding things I have done in my life.  One of the first things that I learned about sales in private duty, home health, or hospice, is that I am not selling anything. I am doing the work of a superhero. 

Many of you have read my blog posts and often have seen me write about how a salesperson must adjust their perception of themselves from that of a sales representative to a problem solver. 

I love teaching this. I show an image of a used car salesperson and share with them that is how I felt at the beginning of my post-acute sales representative journey.  

So what made me change my perception?

Well, one day when going to do a strategy sales call at one of my A+ accounts I ran into the chief of cardiology at the hospital that I was visiting. He happened to get in my elevator. I sheepishly said, “hello” and he saw my badge. He said, “oh your that health care consultant that stops in my office and provides our patients with information.” He reached out his hand to introduce himself with a big smile. (Pre-Covid). 

I reached out my hand and introduced myself. I said, “I’m happy to meet you, but you must have me confused with someone else.”  He said, “No, it’s you, Cheryl the consultant. Unless you have a twin, aren’t you the girl who brings me information on advance care planning and CHF program for our patients?” He went on. “Every month you put new educational flyers in our exam rooms for our patients.”  

…And that is the moment it really hit me.  

I was not a sales representative to this important physician, who (despite my best efforts) I never even got to meet. He perceived me as a “health care consultant.”  

Many years have passed since that great 2-min elevator moment, but the impact was significant on my sales career. I was, a health care consultant. I remember thinking about what I did at his office practice location that obviously put me in good standing with the Chief of Cardiology for one of the nation’s largest hospitals in the U.S.  

Today, my company, Home Care Sales teaches these successful strategies to sales representatives across the nation. This simple exchange has helped to further impact other soon-to-be superheroes to realize the impact they have on the lives of care providers and patients across their market.

It’s not the educational flyers you deliver to a doctor’s office or at senior fairs. It isn’t the promo items that you bring them once a month that cost you a dollar. It is how you service your accounts. It all comes down to how you approach your account as a business partner or, more importantly, as a problem solver. Not someone doing sales emails or sales voice mails, but someone who helps solve their problems.

I went back into my CRM to look at the sales notes from my stops at the Cardiologist’s office. I read in my documentation that they were trying to capture more revenue by adding additional services to patients visits. (Before you read too far into that, we are talking about handling more in-office…not referring for un-required MRIs or anything of that nature)

I did some homework and found out about advanced care planning. I made up an advance care planning book of forms and delivered the books to that office. I trained the billing person on the “how-to” and prepared a recording of me talking to the doctors at the location about what was in the 1-inch binder book and how they could maybe use them to add an additional up code for advance care planning to their routine visits. We teach these strategies in our Master’s program for High Performance Sales Representatives. 

If we break down what I did it would be something like this:

  • Changed my self-perception to be “The Solutionist.”
  • Approached my account as a problem solver.
  • Asked questions to identify what this doctor’s office is trying to get accomplished right now.
  • Provided the necessary resources to solve the account’s problem.
  • Collected patients referrals and delivered incredible customer service

Now it may seem complicated, but it really isn’t. I used a weekly sales plan that had me consult on patient types that required more of my accounts time (and therefore resources). I provided educational materials that my accounts could share with their patients/residents on how to live a healthy long life.  

It is the same weekly sales plan that has been upgraded every year to get results for our sales reps, our Weekly Roadmap To Referrals.

I believe that sales representatives may need help to become or evolve into a sales consultant. 

Fortunately, I have had an advantage. I am a nurse and worked as a full-time case manager in patients’ homes so I could easily speak of the benefits that the patient and the referring account would receive when a patient was on my agency’s services.  

Now we know many sales consultants need to be taught these things in order to really produce high-value accounts that consistently refer. That’s why Home Care Sales, lead by two clinicians, built our “Weekly Road Map To Referrals Program.”  It infuses all the clinical knowledge you will need to become a community health care consultant without having to be clinically trained.

The Road Map To Referrals is a weekly plan that allows you to be all that you want to be to your accounts.  You gain clinical insights and the exact questions to ask to uncover what is really important to your accounts. 

It also comes with an hour of coaching every month with Melanie and I to have you overcome any objections you are facing while you are trying to sell your services. If you aren’t using our Weekly Road Map to Referrals you should be.

The fastest way to get started is to reach out to or sign up with Mike to see the program in action:

Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”


Today, I spoke with one of our favorite clients, and she stated that she “bled white and red” (her Home Health and Hospice logo colors). I’ve learned something from being from the south and living in the SEC.

(no, that is not the security exchange committee as I MISTAKENLY thought when I met my husband. It’s THE South Eastern Conference – you know which includes the NEW NATIONAL CHAMPIONS – Roll Tide! – but I digress…)

You come to understand passionate “team players,” and this rep is undoubtedly one of those “team players.”

You know the type: Never REALLY off even though she is on PTO, willing to get consents signed at 9 pm, and the list goes on and on. She has been with this agency for 12 years, so the question is, can you “build” a Michelle?

YES, YOU CAN! And if you can build one – then you can repeat it!

Wouldn’t that be AWESOME! Retention system at its FINEST!


Having team members stay at your agency for 12+ years (nurses, therapists, aides, caregivers, and marketers) all getting to know one another and how to work together in a silent, beautiful dance… All that institutional knowledge makes me giddy as a business owner! I WANT MORE OF THAT!

Here is one of the steps you need to take to “build” a Michelle on your team:

Team Member Profile – do you have one?

Now you are asking me what a team member profile is?


Part 1: It’s all about your team member!

Do you know:

  1. Work activities that they do and give them energy
  2. Work activities that take energy
  3. Things they avoid


Part 2: What is their behavioral type or Personality

Do you know:

  1. What is their “work love language.”
  2. What does their personality “like” that is the key to stickiness!


Do you know the answers to these questions of your direct reports? If not, start now!

We just dropped this form in our resources section of our CAM experience – if you would like to be part of the CAM FAM, reach out and have a conversation!

Click here to fill out the application and see if it’s the right fit for you!

Serving Seniors Together!




Thankfully 2020 has come to an end, but the pain from the last year has lingered on. I wanted to share a look at how one agency owner, who owns a home health, hospice, and private duty organization, survived the year.  The owner I am speaking about is me, Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”.  

Covid came into my awareness I believe in December 2019, but I did not see it having much of an impact. Boy was I wrong! 

In March, all hell broke loose. 

It all started at my corporate headquarters when 50% of my operational team all came down with Covid at the same time! We had to operate the organization with 50% of our team. It was insane. I became intake for home health, hospice, and private duty as well as the initial authorization nurse, and nursing supervisor taking all the reports on all new admissions. It was 18 hours days for 2 weeks straight. Insane does not come close to describing these 2 weeks.

Next, my consulting business, Home Care Sales, had to completely change the way we do business. We had to deal with all our clients reaching out to say hey what do I do now that my reps cannot get in to do sales calls or pick-up referrals?  

We quickly pivoted and in March launched our Inside Sales Course, which rocked the industry. Our clients were gaining more referrals than ever before! My personal sales representatives that work for my agencies were all placed on the inside sales training program.

Hospital referrals were significantly cut. We had on average about 178 admits from hospitals a month, and that was cut down to under 40. 

Trying to keep my businesses above water, we reached out to all our physicians that have referred in the past and told them we can help with telehealth visits. We would go into their patients’ home and complete an assessment, review their meds, and help get the patient with face to face virtual visits with our iPad.  

If problems were identified that would meet the requirements for admission for home health to monitor how the patient is responding to changes in the patient’s plan of care, we would do the admission that day. With the sales reps using the inside sales training, our home health census boomed! We made up for all of the referrals that didn’t come from the hospitals and more!

Now we had a new problem… 

We needed more nurses and at the same time, 3 full-time nurses quit, saying they do not want to care for Covid patients. Now what! Okay, brush off the dirt, and get recruiting. God must have a plan for all of us because I had just been working on an amazing recruiting and retention program, so I quickly used what I created and got busy hiring.  

First, we put in place a new retention program to prevent losing any other staff. Success! Now, during this time of onboarding new staff, we had a shortened length of stay on services. We were discharging patients sooner than necessary to make room for new admissions.  

This is why one of the things I say all the time during webinars or workshops to owners is: 

“Grow your census, not just your admissions.”  

If you want to grow your census by 25 more patients on census you will need another full-time nurse.  You cannot grow without hiring more staff.

Of course, private duty began booming. After all, adult daycare centers were closed and now those patients were at home and left alone. 

We were already a waiver/options provider so we could provide the additional patients with private duty services paid for by the waiver program. Soon, AAA was referring more than ever before to our organization. We needed to hire more aids. By the time we got that done, private duty hours had grown (by over 2500 hours a month by end of June).

In hospice, we experienced no growth. In fact, fewer and fewer referrals. As if that wasn’t enough, our hospice Medical Director gets Covid and ends up in ICU on a vent for 28 days.  Skilled Nursing Facilities were preventing access to buildings and keeping patients on their version of palliative care to capture higher reimbursement.  

This led to fewer patients going to ER or urgent care centers for fear of contacting Covid. So we hired some new sales representatives for hospice, only to find out they had a non-complete and they can’t work for 18 months selling hospice services.   

So here we are back to the drawing board. Does anybody else relate to this 2020 story? Well, don’t worry. You can’t keep a Philly Girl down for long!

Our hospice Medical Director released from the hospital and admitted to home health services. OT and PT work with him and get him back on his feet within 6 weeks. During those weeks, I worked with my current team to leverage the inside sales process with the message of the Roadmap to Referrals Hospice. Calling about specific diagnoses was the key. 

After closing out the year, we conducted a review of the year of stats for 2020, and would you believe it?

We shattered every goal we set for growth in 2020!  

What a year of ups and downs. I do not think I worked this hard for quite a few years! My agency, family, and Home Care Sales learned so much from 2020! We saw what worked at my agency as well as the many agencies that we consulted for. The good news is this: Vaccines are going out! We will conquer this.  

We have all learned so much from this tough year. The beautiful thing about facing adversity is it gives you a chance to push through and battle on! Once you accept your situation and decide that you will conquer the challenge, you can push through and win your battles!  

It gives you the ability to tap into strengths that you may not even know that you possess. Look back over your 2020. It was so hard, right?  Well…you made it through it.  If you can do that, what can’t you do? 2020 taught us all that we are stronger than we realize.

Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”

PS: Need more help with your conversion to “remote” marketing. Check out our High Performance Inside Sales Program or sign up with Mike to see any of our programs in action:

When I saw the image above on the internet, I thought, OMG, so many Home Care Owners and Executives look just like this! All are looking to grow their agency, putting in a tremendous amount of effort and trying a whole bunch of strategies.

Only to give up when they are inches away from their “next breakthrough,” stopping just short of the “diamonds.”

Most Home Care Owners, following their passion for helping people are a lot closer to reaching their goals than they might think.

Lord knows you have put in enough “work” to have the level of success you desire!

You need a “Map”! If you knew you were just inches away, you would keep going strong!

That “Map” is carefully crafted with The 5 Pillars of a Growth Agency.

Like any trip, Home Care growth is easier if you know what roads to take to get you to your destination.

One of our favorite CAM FAM (Caring Agency Mastermind Family) clients looked to us for some recruiting answers (maybe you are looking too). Growing was not a challenge for them. ( I have heard from 3 owners this week – 1 had to turn down 600 hours, another had 2 – 24/ 7 cases – you are NOT alone with this challenge!) Recruiting was the last Mastermind Meeting topic – as it is the most often reported item that is limiting their growth!

The owners in the CAM FAM stepped up and helped this owner gain more clarity on:

How to gain more applicants: 

Examples of Great Headlines for the job posting – Have you updated your postings since the pandemic? Not just new year new you!

How to get them to “show up” for the interview:

Timelines on responding to the applicant and coordinating interviews “where the applicant is,” i.e., online, zoom, messenger, phone, and coordinating in-person visits outside the office.

How to get the applicant to “show up” for the orientation and required training 

It starts at the “verbal offer” to make them “sticky.” What does your “Welcome Wagon” look like?

I am so grateful to have these owners be part of this mastermind where they share so freely their experience and tools that are working for them.

If you would like to have a conversation and see if you are the right fit, please fill out an application, and let’s get started! Our next meeting is this Thursday!

In-Service to Seniors!


Last week I wrote about the frustration that our sales reps deal with every day.

Getting a hand in their face. Being ignored. Why because our contacts and prospects are just too busy. They don’t want anything to stop them from being productive and they just want us to leave them alone.

I shared a little about using something called the Gap Theory.

Have you ever found yourself watching a stupid TV show because you just want to know what happens in the end? Have you ever stayed tuned to the 10:00 PM news, even though you were tired, because the lead was “When we return, see how the man eluded the police by scaling a 50-story high building!”

The reason is when we want to know something we don’t already know, we become curious and WANT the answer. It is like getting an itch, and we want to scratch it. To scratch the itch, we will invest our time.

We’ll stay up later to watch the news even when we are tired. We’ll sit through a stupid TV show, and we’ll even return a salesperson’s call. This gap in knowledge is called the “Gap Theory” and it is a salesperson’s best friend.

“Gap theory” is when there is a gap in our knowledge that can’t be filled. It creates pain. The pain won’t go away until we gain knowledge or fill the gap.

You want to get more prospects to call you back? Fill the gap. Shift your thinking from: “What information do I want to convey?” to “What questions do I want my prospects to ask?” An example, I learned the number one thing that doctor’s offices can do to prevent vulnerable seniors from falling.  I would love to share it with you!

Another way to grab attention from our contacts and prospects is to Surprise them

We are surprised when we didn’t expect anything. It makes us stop for a moment and sit up and take notice.   As I said earlier, our brains are dialed into changes in our surroundings. They can be anything from how you communicate to what you communicate. 

You want them to have this response, they stop and think and then they say to a co-worker after they read an email from you, “Hey, did you know that……”?  Or they jump on the internet and immediately start reading about a stat that you just shared with them.  Maybe they go home from work and say to their spouse or children, “Guess what I learned today?” Now, you will probably get them to read your next email too!

One of the reps that we work with, sent a letter to all the doctors’ offices that she was prospecting at invited them to tea.  The Sales rep got a free zoom account, and she made an invitation and sent it snail mail with a teabag in the envelope.  She invited 10 different offices and 50% of them showed up to talk about the top 3 daily frustrations about working in a doctor’s office!  She has now moved 4 of those prospects into referring contacts.


A mystery is a story that makes no sense.  It’s when we’re presented with a “Huh?” Mysteries exist wherever there are questions without obvious answers.  Why do 30% of people using an inhaler use it improperly?  Why don’t patients like our new project?

Mysteries are powerful. They invite the client to solve the “huh?” with you.  Mysteries create a need for closure. We (our contacts and prospects included) do not like to leave things open.  We will “hang around” for the answer to get closure.  Creating mysteries for prospects and clients will lure them into discussions and on a journey. By creating mysteries prospects will stick with you until they get the information you hold. 

For example:

Voice Mail Script

Hi Betty,

You don’t know me yet, but I wanted to share with you what Dr. Smith’s office is doing down the street from your practice to make his patients safer at home.  Call me at [] or email me at [] and share with me a few days and times that you can speak to me for just about 5 mins.  Can’t wait to share…..

To get more prospects to call you back and to get a better return from cold calling, you have to create intrigue. You have to be unexpected. The way to be unexpected is to leverage curiosity, intrigue, or a knowledge gap and surprise.

The “Surprise Call”

Surprises break up a pattern. Prospects and current contacts get sales calls every day.  They are the same old, boring, cold calls from everyone. There is little to no difference from one cold call to the next.

Example of an expected cold call:

Hello, my name is Cheesy Sales Guy. I’m calling for just 5 minutes of your time. I’d like to talk to you about our Piggly, wiggly. It’s helped many of our customers save money, improve efficiency, and create happier employees.

If you would please give me a call back at (555) 555-1212.

I look forward to talking to you. Thanks!

I’ve gotten more of these calls than I can count. I tune them outright from the get-go. There is nothing here to make me want to give up my valuable time to call back. The ones that don’t get tuned out, surprise me. They break my expected pattern of a cold call.

Like most of us, our prospects and contacts have learned to tune out these messages too. To avoid getting tuned out, surprise your prospects, break their pattern, be different.

Use humor, a few off the wall, and surprising facts about your product or service. Share some unique and unknown facts about your clients’ industry. Make a silly promise, be humble by acknowledging you know you’re an annoying cold call, do whatever you can do to break the cold call pattern your prospects are already used to. If you can’t break your prospect’s pattern, you won’t get their attention. They will simply hit the delete button and poof your message goes into the cyber a bias.

Create surprise, avoid being gimmicky, keep your message germane to your prospects and contacts. I’ve found, the best way to get prospects to call you back is to know something they don’t about their industry, their business, the products they use, and more. When we know something our prospects don’t, we create a knowledge gap.

A knowledge gap creates curiosity. Curiosity creates intrigue.

Our job as salespeople is to sell products and services that improve the existing condition of our prospects and current contacts.  If we are unable to improve their situation, we have nothing to sell. For us to demonstrate we can improve a prospect’s work environment requires knowledge and information about the industry, the market, their business, and their competitor’s business.

If you want a prospect or current contacts to take your cold call, find the gap in their knowledge by knowing things they don’t. Do research on what matters now to hospitals, SNF’s, ALF communities, and doctors’ offices.  

Look for obscure information that could positively affect your prospects such as learning about MIPS, merit bases incentive payments for physicians. Do the research for them. Become a treasure trove of data and information for your referral sources.  They will love you for it!  They will be loyal to you!  You will move your prospects into new referring accounts!


Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”

PS: Need more help with your conversion to “remote” marketing. Check out our High Performance Inside Sales Program or sign up with Mike to see any of our programs in action:

Happy New Year, HCS Family!

As we get ready to jump into 2021, it is also a perfect time to reflect.

One of my mentors in business asked me 5 questions. I found them insightful, and some of the answers surprised me as I had not posed that question to myself before that way. Today I want to share the gift forward.

Take a minute and think about your answers; my mentor suggested writing out the answers to give you space to really reflect.


Here are the 5 questions:

1.  What are you tolerating in your business that you shouldn’t anymore? And why?


We all tolerate things in our business, staff members who don’t produce as much as we believe they should, not knowing our numbers as we should, not hiring a salesperson because we are afraid to make the wrong choice, so we stay “stuck” in place.

The first part of this question is usually easy to answer. For me, it was. I could quickly identify what I “tolerate” in my business that I should not.

The second part of this question was a little “harder.” Why did I tolerate this? Working so much, trying to hold it all together, trying to serve everyone else and not disappoint clients sometimes leaves our business “last.” Why do you tolerate your issue?


2.  What do you want to do in your business that you have been putting off?


You have business goals. You want to grow, open a new office, or add staff, but you have been putting it off?

What do you need to do to get to the next level?


3.  Who do you need to forgive, and what do you need to forgive them on? So you can move forward (yourself is an option)


This was a question I was not prepared for. He asked who I needed to forgive to move forward, my parents, spouse, an old business partner, clients, or even myself. I felt like I didn’t need to forgive anyone for my business to move forward, but when he said myself was an option – that hit home. Perfection is the enemy of good. Time to forgive! Who do you need to forgive to move forward?

4.  “Why haven’t you got “_______________”. Fill in your desired result or outcome, and what is stopping you from your own success?


This is another “stop in your tracks” question.

You know yourself better than anyone else in this world. You also know why you haven’t achieved the outcome you wanted and what is standing in your way (hint it often our own limiting beliefs such as I can’t manage a sales rep –or I cant market to hospitals – Don’t let that stop you we can help give you the tools!)


5.  What would a breakthrough look like for you? Describe it. What would it mean for you? Why do you want to have a breakthrough this year?


This was a great question because often, when discussing goals with an owner or marketer, they will say, “I need to grow,” But what does that mean? You need to be specific and know your “why” to get the emotion behind the breakthrough or goal!


Get curious – get deep with this! This IS your time!


1st Step: Become aware

Once you become aware, you can change your behavior, and if you need tools or skills for marketing and selling in-home care, home health, or hospice, Home Care Sales has your back!

2021 is a NEW year and time for a NEW YOU!

Be expansive and in growth mode!

This is your time to take it to the next level!


Happy New Year!