This week I am back at Mom’s, taking her to all her follow-up appts – it’s about one a day plus her Home Health visits.

The Home Health Nurse, OT, and PT are weaving around my Mom’s Dr’s schedule and doing a great job!

My Mom lives in a cape-cod style house where the whole upper floor is her bedroom, and she upgraded her bathroom a few years ago to her dream bathroom.

As you can imagine, her “patient-centered goal” is to get upstairs to sleep in her bedroom and use that bathroom.

 

However, since her daughter is an OT (that would be me, and she now refers to me as the taskmaster to all the healthcare professionals we have appts with :-0 ), she is in my childhood bedroom on the main floor using a transfer tub bench and a handheld shower that I had my brother install before she got home from the hospital.

This adaptation is “fine” with her now, but she wants to go upstairs in her own bed and her awesome shower.

But, she is limited right now. Standing in that awesome shower comes with risk. I don’t know who thought that tile would be a good idea, but just yesterday, I nearly bit it walking out – it’s SUPER slippy when wet!

She is limited, but she has a CLEAR OT and PT goal – upstairs, her own room, her own bathroom. She is learning new compensation techniques that will serve her in achieving her goal.

She will be there in no time. I see her getting stronger every day. My other brother Justin just got here today from AZ to take the ‘next shift” of “Mom helping” when I return home this weekend.

What does this have to do with you and marketing?

 

  1. COVID has made us “adapt” – pre COVID we marketed one way – “post-event” we have to market another way. Those who “adapted” the fastest reduced their time to get to their “goals” of more referrals.
  2. Compensation tactics and new skills. No one I know who is a home health marketer or hospice liaison wants to “remote” market only, but the skills they developed last year through using our sales email library in the Roadmap to Referrals gave them an edge. And this year, it’s just part of our fabric of marketing. We can go farther faster!
  3. CLEAR GOALS! What is your goal? The number. The timeframe. Speak it into existence. Give your goals LIFE! Mom is VERY clear about her goal. Upstairs in her room and using her fantastic bathroom. Because she is so clear – she will get there! And you will achieve your goals too when you are crystal clear on what success looks like for you!

 

Marketing for Home Health, Home Care, and Hospice is a journey. We are here at HCS to help you with a roadmap. Much like Mom’s OT and PT have a clinical pathway for her treatment plan, so can you. So if you are looking for a clear path to success, we have got your back – Roadmap to Referrals is your answer!

 

Jump on Mikes’s calendar, and he can show you the “on-ramp” to success!

Continuing adaptation is the key this year!

We would be honored to serve you – connect with Mike now!

 

Together we grow!

Remember, persistence pays off!

Melanie

Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”

Today I took a call from an owner who started out with this statement, “I’m at the end of my wits with my sales team.”

Yesterday the owner said something like, “I can’t help my sales representative get any further.”

Over the last month, I received several calls from owners who stated:

    • We never got our referrals back to Pre-Covid levels”

    • “I can’t help my team”

    • “I’m all out of ideas”

    • “I don’t have the time or energy to manage a sales team”

So many agencies feel the same way!

It is hard work to grow an organization. It is hard work even when you have a home health company and they get referrals from their own rehab centers.

Over the last year with Covid, many seniors opted not to replace that knee or hip and as a result, their facility beds were empty.  No self-referrals.

So their CEO’s call me and say:

    • My sales managers aren’t producing referrals anymore.

    • My sales reps can’t get in to see referral sources so how can they get referrals.

My answer is always the same.

Let Home Care Sales Manage your sales reps!

 

If you have a large team (over 5 reps) or a small team (4 and under) we have a sales management program that solves all your problems.

You see, we learned what works by doing it. We are able to support your team with sales management or sales support with our weekly sales messaging.

If they need training we got that too! Want to use some of your Covid dollars? Hire us to come on-site and teach our Covid proof sales process that delivers results. My company is one of the fastest-growing providers in my entire state! Our clients are growing by leaps and bounds!

If you are feeling frustrated by your salespeople let us take care of you!  Let us coach/train and manage for you at the fraction of what it would cost you to hire a full-time sales manager!

Email Mike@homecaresales.com or reach out to me directly at Cheryl@homecaresales.com.  We are here for you!

 

Keep Helping, Keep Serving,

Cheryl Pelekis, RN “The Solutionist”

Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”

 

I spent a few weeks exploring Europe with friends that I met at a conference back in 2005. It was a trip of a lifetime. Milan fashion week, Switzerland and its magnificent Alps, spectacular Lake Como, Austria, and Budapest with three days in Venice!

 

I posted a few of the photo’s so my kids could follow us on our magical trip. One of my clients sent me a text message asking me this question.

“IT LOOKS LIKE YOU ARE ON AN AMAZING TRIP.  HOW DID YOU TRANSITION FROM BEING A NURSE TO BEING A SALES EXPERT?”

 

 

I had my phone reply to all my texts that I was out of the country, so I had a lot of time to think about my answer. I wanted to share what I came to realize.

What is Nursing?

For me, nursing is working with a deep passion for helping others.

What is Sales?

For me, sales is working with a deep passion for helping others.

Purpose of Nursing

21st Century nursing is the glue that holds a patient’s health care journey together. Across the entire patient experience, and wherever there is someone in need of care, nurses work tirelessly to identify and protect the needs of the individual.

My Purpose for Sales

21st Century selling in the post-acute environment is the glue that holds a patient’s health care journey together. Across the entire patient experience, and wherever there is someone in need of care, sales reps work tirelessly to identify and protect the needs of the individual.

Nurses Are…..

Prepared with knowledge

Sales Reps are too!

What causes people to act or change?

Nursing taught me that only two things every drive change in a person’s habits: pain or fear!

Learning that allowed me to apply that principle and use it when out selling. Tap into a prospecting account’s fear or pain, bring them the solution, heal them, and get their business!

Nursing taught me to be PERSUASIVE!

Sales work requires me to be persuasive!

Nursing taught me to be relentless. I will never forget my first time doing chest compressions on a young man in his 50’s (now that I’m in my 50’s, they are young) and the doctor saying, “Okay, let’s call time of death.” My response was just a few more minutes, and the patient made it.

Now I tell my reps, be RELENTLESS and complete weekly sales calls for 8-12 weeks, and you may win the battle.  Sales reps keep gaining new accounts and growing the number of referrals weekly.

So maybe nursing has made me a better sales leader.

Maybe learning how to care for a patient has evolved me into a nurse who can sell.

Or perhaps Sales People are just hero’s too! I’m so grateful to know so many who are!  Thanks for the text!

 

Keep Helping, Keep Serving,

Cheryl Pelekis, RN “The Solutionist”

Good news 21 days later, Mom is home, AND she has a Home Health Nurse, PT, and OT!

 

Yeah! Persistence pays off!

 

When I last left you, Mom was back in the hospital; her platelet count was rising, and we were in a little bit of a panic.

 

Her platelets were over 2 million, and we were a little nervous.

 

More pheresis, more medication, and one super scary A fib incident where her heart rate was over 165 laying in bed.

Mom was on the “ortho” floor. Why?

 

Because that is where a free bed was in the pandemic and you take what you can get! Her nurse Sara was super! She was not cardiac or from hematology, but she was knowledgeable, had an excellent bedside manner, and knew that she needed to get back up when the monitors went a little wacky with my Mom’s A-Fib.

 

So she called the critical care team.

 

According to my Mom, the critical care team came flying in to get her condition under control while Sara waved at my Mom and gave her the thumbs-up sign through the window. My Mom reported she thought she would meet God and come back to tell us about it, and Sara was an angel encouraging her to “stay with her.”

 

The care team got my Mom’s cardiac condition under control in about an hour. And then my Mom texted me and said, “Well, I guess it was not my time. I am still here!”

 

 

That was a heck of a text message. I am grateful she was in the hospital, and she was able to be cared for by the nurses and doctors so quickly.

 

This time Sara, my Mom’s nurse, identified early that my Mom needed PT and OT. She requested PT and OT bedside. After 4 Pheresis later and medication adjustments, Mom was ready to D/C!

 

And without prompting – the hospital Ordered Home Health!

 

(Of Course, it helped that Interim of Western PA knew precisely where my Mom was and was following up. As I had emailed them to tell them not to come out to assess as my Mom had gone back into the hospital before they could even get out there!)

 

Great news! And now I get to tell you how professional and kind the nurses and therapists were for my Mom!

 

With my Mom’s platelets being dramatically reduced to about 550k, she is much more functional. However, she is weak and still a fall risk. She has a new diagnosis of Afib and new medication. My brother and I will take turns taking her to her appointments, but she is looking ‘more like her old self” than I have seen her in a long time.

 

The nurses are helping her understand her disease process and educating her on “what pill to take when.”

 

The therapists are helping her get stronger and increase her endurance. They are also helping her understand the limitations and compensation techniques to be independent in the home. In addition, we have activated a telemonitoring device, Pro-Health, from ECG to be safe, and I can monitor her vital signs from afar.

 

As one of our favorite coaches, Michelle, reminds us, “It takes a team”!

 

I am grateful to everyone on my Mom’s care team for helping us get her back to her home.

 

Her patient-centered goal is to get “back to dancing.” – Hopefully, soon, I will be writing a blog about how Mom is dancing again!

 

Marketing lessons learned from Moms readmission:

 

  • Persistence pays off! Man, did I fight for my Mom to have Home Health. It boggles my mind how much effort I had to put forth to get mom home health. Patient advocacy is what we do every day.

 

This was a HUGE reminder that our referral sources are doing the best they can – in unusual conditions during this pandemic. They are tired. We are not top of mind which is why you have to CONSISTENTLY be out there sharing your message of Home Care, Home Health, and Hospice!

 

  • Get help when you need it! Sara (bless her heart) was an ortho nurse. However, due to the hospital being full, she had my Mom – a cardiac / hematology patient. When she didn’t know what to do, she called in the critical care team!

 

As a home care marketer, home health liaison, or hospice representative, there are PLENTY of times when you don’t know how to approach an account or get past the gatekeeper. Think of us as your Critical Care Team!

 

  • We got your back here at HCS!

 

Remember, persistence pays off!

Melanie

 

P.S. Do you need Home Care Sales as your Critical Care Team? We got you covered. Click Here to -> Set up a time with Mike for a free consultation and discover how you can go from challenged to champion in just 90 days!

The last time I wrote, Mom was out of the hospital after ten days.

 

I left my brother in charge at her house. (What could go wrong?) While I flew to Orlando to be a Keynote Speaker for the Assisting Hands annual conference (Thank you for trusting me with your stage and agency owners!)

 

As my best friend from OT school says, “As the oldest daughter – we are always in the pole position,” and so my quest for Home Health for my Mom continued even on the road.

 

I am happy to say the power of an excellent Home Health agency got me to exactly who I needed to help me.

 

As you know, I had already emailed Interim of (Western PA) Meadville and Erie as their VP is a long-time client and friend. She also is who I email when I need “help” for my family in the area. Interim Erie, their leader Heather shared with me via an email exchange on Saturday: “Oh, your Mom goes to Dr. H? His SW Anne is lovely!” So, as a marketer, I knew exactly what to do now – I had a name!

 

I called Dr. H’s office first thing Monday and left a message for Anne to contact me – which she did. I introduced myself and shared that I was requesting Home Health for my Mom. I shared my Mom’s physical limitations and her medication confusion with her. Anne reported she would request an order from Dr. H, and he would be seeing my Mom that day so that it would be perfect.

 

When my Mom went to see Dr. H during the visit, my brother asked about Home Health, and the Dr reported, “I will review the request.” My brother reported back to me, and I almost flipped a lid again. I had to practice my deep breathing exercises. But this time, I didn’t even have to make a phone call. The next thing I saw come in was an email from Interim reporting Dr. H sent over the order for Home Health! YEAH!

 

I was so happy! Interim was scheduled to come the next day! VICTORY for Home Health services for MOM!

 

I wish I could tell you the rest of the story about how extraordinarily the agency’s clinicians are (and they are!). But, unfortunately, Mom’s platelet count is up, which means she is headed back to the hospital as I write this blog.

 

Lessons learned for marketing:

    1. Don’t give up-you are a patient ADVOCATE – if the patient needs to help, it’s your moral obligation to help them.
    2. Get a name and use it – in this case, one of my favorite Home Health teams knew the name of the Social Worker that I needed to get in touch with – could I have found Anne on my own most likely, but it saved me time, and I was able to get an ally in my quest for Home Health.
    3. I didn’t include this in my story above – I used the TADA call structure for my discussion with Ann, the Social Worker from the High-Performance Sales Process – we can talk about that another day.
    4. You are making a difference in the lives that you serve!

 

Thank you for all your efforts in getting people the care they deserve!

Education is the key – most medical professionals don’t honestly know what you do – they just refer to the most obvious cases. You are there to provide more depth and subtle shades of who is appropriate for your services.

 

This is YOUR TIME TO SHINE!

 

Be the:

EDUCATOR

PATIENT ADVOCATE

THE HOME CARE EXPERT

That you are!

 

Keep shining bright!

Melanie

 

P.S. Want the TADA sales call structure that I used with Anne? Set up a time with Mike that works for you to review the High-Performance Sales Academy!

Last Thursday, I woke up at 6 am to a text…

“Mel. I have chest pains, and I am headed to the ER.”

 

She wrote to me at 4:45 am

I jumped out of bed and text her back:

“Mom, what’s going on? Where are you? What is your diagnosis?”

I woke up my husband and said, “I think I need to fly to my mom’s. Can you get the kids ready for school?”

Of course, he said yes, and I immediately went packing and looking for the next flight to make it to the airport on time.

I booked a 10 am flight and raced to the airport.

As I was going through security, my phone rang. I could see it was my Mothers phone number. I quickly made my way through the line and answered the phone.

“Mom – how are you? What’s going on?”

 

She sweetly said, “Well, I thought I was having a heart attack, but I am not.” I said, “OK, I am at the airport, and I will be home by 3 pm,” She said. “Oh, Melanie – Don’t come; you have so much going on, plus today was the day that my five college roommates were coming to your house for our 70th birthday party celebration.”

This is true! Her five roommates from college get together every year and have a girls’ week.

In 2020 they were supposed to celebrate their 70th birthday by going to New Orleans and visiting me, but COVID stopped that. So they rescheduled it starting last Thursday. (see the picture – my Mom is in the blue dress)

I told my Mom – I was at the airport, and I was coming home. My husband Chris and my boys were going to have to be in charge of the 70-year-old birthday party for the ladies.

I flew home and drove to the hospital. They said she presented clinically like she had sepsis. Then she had an extremely high heart rate of 160 while lying in bed.

She went into a fib at least twice and had some irregular rhythms. But, the most concerning part? Her palette count was through the roof. The normal count was about 400k.  Moms’ count was 1.3 and on the move. She would hit a high of 2.3 during her stay.

In all, she spent ten days at the hospital. Finally, on the 9th day, she was “stable.” My brother came in to switch out with me and get ready to “take mom home.”

Before I left the University Hospital – where she received excellent care – I told my Mom, “please make sure you request Home Health before you leave.”

Mom is a traditional Medicare patient with VA secondary. She had a new cardiac diagnosis, new medications, she could only walk 25 ft, and it would wipe her out. She was weak and debilitated. She was unsteady in her gait, and even her bed mobility was a challenge.

As I boarded a plane to go home, Mom texted me, “The nurse says I can’t have Home Health because I didn’t come in here with it.”

So as I sit in 19 A headed to ATL – I am thinking, “WTH? This makes zero sense!”

 

So after a few deep breathing exercises, I called the nurses station when I landed in ATL. I asked the nurse if I could please request Home Health for my Mom, and she said, well, you need to speak with the social worker.

So I asked if I could be transferred. The social worker was kind and said she would ask for an order. And then I got to say the words that are always told to us – “and our patient choice is Interim out of Meadville. We have used them in the past, and I request we are referred to them again.”

She said she would pass the information along to the case manager, and I hung up the phone. I texted my brother and mother that we are in business! She would get Home Health!

I felt good about having a 2nd pair of eyes on my Mom as I sat down on my 2nd flight.

When I landed and turned on my phone, I saw a text from my Mom.

“The doctor came in and said that I am functional and there is no need for Home Health, so he will not write the order. Because I will not qualify.”

 

As my blood pressure began to rise – I asked my Mom:

 

“Did he ask you how many stairs to the entry of the house?”

“Did he ask you if you had a bathroom on the 1st floor?”

“Does he know your bedroom is upstairs?”

“Why, if you de sat into the 80s at nighttime, is that is not a concern?”

 

Of course, the answer is no to all of my questions.

 

Mom has always been the glass-is-half-full type of lady. So consistently, when the staff asked, “How are you feeling” she said, “Great! I feel great!” However, the OT in me (who sat at the bedside for eight days) watched her struggle with bed mobility, ambulation, SOB with activity, and knew better. I assumed that home health would be a given.

Seriously, why would a doctor not order Home Health when a family requested it?

 

How does he know my mother would not qualify?

I am still super mad I was not there. It makes me crazy when a physician who has spent no more than 8 mins a day with a patient believes they know what would qualify for Home Health. I asked my Mom which doctor it was so I could discuss it with him, and she said, “Melanie, just let it go.”

My Mom is not safe at home alone.

She is weak.

She is a fall risk.

She already has needed to be prompted to take her medication by my brother and she doesn’t understand her new beta-blocker or blood thinner.

Why does she need to take them?

*She thinks they are blood pressure medication, and she “doesn’t have blood pressure issues.”

She cannot independently get out of a car.

This personal story is once again a reminder we as marketers MUST ADVOCATE for the patient.

 

The doctors and nurses, while well-meaning, are making some terrible assumptions! I am afraid I made similar assumptions before I became a home health clinician. Functional at the hospital doesn’t mean functional at home.

We MUST continue to educate.

And ADVOCATE for patients just like my Mom who, without my brother, would be back in the hospital today.

This is our MISSION – to get care for everyone who deserves it!

Your care!

 

Keep educating!

Together We Grow

Melanie

 

P.S. – Don’t worry, a call to her PCP is next!

Last week here on the gulf coast, we got hit by Ida.

 

I live about 130 miles from New Orleans on the AL coast. We prepared for Ida, but she only gave us rain.

 

One of our favorite old clients serves New Orleans and the Northshore. My history with them goes back 16yrs when the owner, a nurse, Ms. Lenora, called me three days after Katrina hit and said.

“I have lost so many patients. I have to rebuild. Will you help me?”

 

At that time, I lived in Miami, and I was no stranger to hurricanes, but Katrina was a big one, and I was happy to help.

 

I spent the next 3 years helping Ms. Lenora, her son Richard, and her brother-in-law Norman rebuild their agency. It was one of the most challenging times of my marketing career.

 

We “marketed” to doctors who were in makeshift offices in the Lord and Taylor budling. The nurses treated patients under bridges because their homes were not safe.

 

To say it was challenging is an understatement. Ms. Lenora had grit. She built that agency from the ground up, and she was determined to make it again…And she did.

 

When my contract ended as an “Outsourced Sales Manager” after the 3 yrs, she had her full census back to 300 patients and opened her Hospice.

Image from NBC. All rights reserved.

I have worked on and off for this family for the last 16 yrs helping them grow their agency. Ms. Lenora recently passed, and her son Richard asked me for help again to grow his agency.

 

His team is impressive and embraced the structure of the High-Performance Sales Process and the Roadmap to Referrals. When they were engaged in the sales programs with the help of one of the best operators I have ever worked with, their Director of Nursing, Elizabeth, they achieved record admissions.

 

In May, Richard sold the agency to a large national company. And while we do not work with their team currently, when I saw Ida heading their way  – and on the anniversary of Katrina – well, my heart sank.

 

All those patients in their homes. The thought sends shivers down my spine. I text Elizabeth and asked her how they were and could I help? Unfortunately, they didn’t have electricity.  The utilities reported it could be upwards of 4 wks before power would be restored.

 

She had a generator, and she was “ok.”

 

I asked about patients. She said all patients were accounted for! Whew – we have come a long way in our emergency preparedness programs since Katrina and Ida put them to the test again!

But still four weeks without electricity. Can you imagine? It’s currently 89 degrees and 90% humidity. It’s hot…and what about food and water?

 

Many organizations are coming to NOLA and bringing food, water, bug spray (yes, there are a TON of bugs), toilet paper, baby wipes, gas, etc. Our local American Legion is a donation center, and my boys and I cleaned out our pantry for all nonperishable items and went shopping for bug spray and water.

 

My heart goes out to the nurses and therapists who see patients every day even though their own homes and lives have been damaged. Caring for seniors is their calling. The determination and caring of this community are overwhelming.

Thank you to everyone who is donating time, supplies, and money to help these patients and clinicians.

 

We love NOLA – it’s a great city!

 

Keep safe, and thank you for continuing to serve seniors!

 

Melanie

P.S. If you would like to “do something,” this organization has been extremely helpful in the area and acts quickly to respond to the food needs of the community.

 

 

This week on a coaching call for sales management, a rep from one of our clients (a Home Health and Hospice agency) reported:

 

“This Case Manager, which I have known a long time, SCREAMED at me that she was SICK AND TIRED of us not accepting her patients and was DONE calling us!

What should I do? We don’t have enough staff. I want to take all the patients, but we don’t have enough staff to take them. We have staff on our hospice side but not on our Home Health side, and our referral sources are MAD!

And when I say MAD- not like your normal – “huffy mad” – more like SCREAMING MAD – the kind when they yell at you – you feel it in your bones.”

This experience is becoming more common. I am hearing from reps and owners; this is their experience.

 

Anger – Compassion fatigue – Apathy.

 

From a logical place, we can recognize our referral sources are tired, angry they are in a situation again with numbers rising, not enough beds, overflow in the halls. They thought they saw the light at the end of the tunnel, but no. The pressure is mounting.

And unfortunately, it is spilling over onto our marketers, intake staff, and clinical staff.

And that, in turn, is impacting our marketer’s psychology.

Sales and Marketing, more than any other profession, is reliant on mindset. Have you ever seen a marketer pull big admission numbers when they are down? No. Me neither.

 

So how to survive when your referral sources are at the end of their rope:

 

    1. Recognize that they and you are in an unusual situation with limited resources.
    2. Identify and accept the things you do not have control over.
    3. Be fully aware that you are performing a crucial role and doing the best you can with the resources available.

How to build resilience for yourself in Home Care, Home Health, and Hospice Marketing:

 

    1. Increase your sense of control by controlling your account activity and follow the formula in the High-Performance Sales Process.
    2. Plan your educational message of the week to increase your sense of control through your schedule and weekly planned sales messages in multiple formats – email – VM- and in-person.
    3. Clarity in your numbers and expectations.

 

How to build a bridge to your referral sources

 

    1. Connect to the human first. Ask them, “How can I support you?” They may laugh, cry or yell, and that’s OK – meet them wherever they are in their process.
    2. Just talking about it and giving them space to share their frustrations is often enough.
    3. The most profound relationships are built in the “trenches” during highly emotional events. And this is a “highly emotional event.”

 

Just know that you will get through this. We have been here before.

 

We know the steps to take care of our referral sources and ourselves.

 

If you would like help in caring for and supporting your team or your referral sources, we can help.

 

Connect with Mike@HomeCareSales.com to discover how.

 

Together we support one another.

Melanie

 

PS: Want to jump ahead and set up a time to talk to Mike? Just go here and choose a time on his calendar. It’s that easy!

 

 

I had a call this week with one of our old clients (Robert) who said:

“I am just in a summer slump. I don’t know what is going on. I think I am doing the right things, but the numbers are not growing.”

“I make headway a week or two, and then my referrals drop off. The board is wanting more. We told them we would hit a specific number, and we are not there yet.”

“I have to get more from my team, and I don’t know what to do.”

I told Bob, “I am glad you called! So many of us are in this position at one point in our lives – the summer slump!”

 

I asked Bob a few more clarifying questions:

 

    1. What was going on with his marketing team?
    2. What changes have recently happened with his Operations team?
    3. How’s intake?
    4. What was the one thing that he believed could be done to move the needle?

His initial response – like many of you – was staffing. “We need more staff.” He said to me.

 

I asked, “Besides staffing, what else would move the needle?”

 

He paused for a long minute – there was silence on the phone and then said, “I think the issue is focus.”

 

“They need focus” and then quickly added “and energy. I think this long, drawn-out COVID state is making them tired. Everyone relies on the marketers to bring the energy, and they are tired too.”

 

I can so relate. All the marketers we mentor and coach are tired.

And when you get tired, you need two things:

 

    1. Inspiration
    2. A clear path

 

Many of the teams we work with are in the same position. Consider one of our favorite teams in the south. They are in the middle of COVID numbers rising. Their referral sources are EXHAUSTED! They “snap” at the marketers, and their compassion for their patients is declining – they just “need this bed” for the next patient.

 

How can you market in an environment like this?

 

Inspiration and connection – if your tank is empty, it’s hard to give to your referral sources. 

    • Put on your own “oxygen mask first” before helping your referral sources.

 

When you are tired, you need a clear path – what are you highlighting this week?

    • Have a clear, educational message in an email, Voice Mail, and in-person to ensure the message gets to your referral sources. (you need it in all formats – email, text, VM, and in-person)
    • Connect to the human first – our referral sources face a trauma – connect to the human before moving into your educational message and highlighting a patient type.

 

This is a volatile time.

There will be no “new normal.” Simply volatility in our marketing space. When we understand that truth, we know that continuous adaptation is the only way to move forward.

 

We have adapted our foundational program, RoadMap to Referrals, to gain referrals during this volatile time so that you can serve more patients. Gain more referrals and impact more family’s lives.

 

Curious how we have adapted the system?

 

Click here to find a time on Mike’s calendar that works for you.

 

Together we GROW!

Melanie Stover

Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”

One of the biggest challenges your organization faces is in getting enough referrals for the company to remain profitable. Many times, organizations think they can get enough business from just websites and word of mouth and I will tell you, these are the ones that typically don’t succeed.

If you look around at the top 5 organizations in your market, I guarantee you that they have a sales representative or a team of sales representatives. If you ask agency leadership, “what is the biggest challenge your sales representatives face today when trying to gain new business?” The answers are usually the same.

1.  Staffing.

2.  Having a Sales Rep that can get past the gatekeeper.

3.  Gaining relationships with the hospitals.

4.  Contracting with insurance companies.

5.  Leadership can’t relate to sales team personality and demands.

Today I want to share with you a few tips so you can get past the gatekeeper and gain more private duty, home health, and hospice referrals.

Here are your 5 tips to learn how to overcome the 5 Challenges:

 

1.  CHALLENGE: Staffing.

Buy the Recruiting and Retention program. One tip from the program will be worth 10X the cost. So many companies waste money by placing ads that aren’t effective. So many ads are placed and potential candidates are lost to a slow culture at an organization. This program will help you evaluate your current process, and give it an upgrade!

2.  CHALLENGE: Having a sales rep that can get past the gatekeeper.

If your sales rep can not get to the referral source they can’t build a relationship that produces referrals. We got you! Buy the High-Performance Sales Academy! This program teaches not only a repeatable, successful sales process but how to get past the gatekeepers to put it in action!

3.  CHALLENGE: Gaining relationships with the hospitals.

Hospitals can be a real challenge to gain access. In fact, we teach a whole class on how to access the hospitals in our High-Performance Sales Academy and spend time role-playing out the situations every month on our group coaching calls and really take the sales reps through all the what-if scenarios. You may also need to get a vendor clearance and your organization may also have to purchase in referral exchange EMR’s.

However, one way that almost always works, and it doesn’t require any special referral software, is to have your sales representative go visit any of your active patients that get admitted to the hospital. The sales representative can go visit the patient and after they see the patient, stop at the desk and ask them to page the discharge planner that has your patient’s room assigned to them. When the Case manager arrives, you now have a chance to do your qualifying sales call and find out if this hospital discharge planner has both the willingness and the ability to refer to your organization.

You want to be prepared to ask several questions so you can then easily position your organization to obtain referrals.  Here are a few examples of what I would ask. All of this is also taught in our High-Performance Sales Academy and more!

    • What agency do you currently refer most of your patients to? This question typically gets an answer that is something like: We offer patient choice, or we provide the patient with a list.
    • Can you show me if my organization is on your list?  If you’re not on the list, you can write a letter to the hospital corporate compliance officer to request to be on the list.  If you are on the list, you can say something like “Great, I’m so glad that you offer freedom of choice.
    • Could you share with me: What criteria you use to help your patients receive guidance on selecting an agency from the list? How do they know what providers are great at wound care? Or How do they know what providers take their insurance? Or how do they know who can provide 24-hour care at home?
    • Can you share with me 2 examples of when you had to refer a patient to a different provider than your preferred provider?
    • How often do you have to give a referral to someone other than your preferred providers?
    • Do you have trouble getting services provided quickly in any of the counties?
    • Could you share with me 3 things that you love about referring to your preferred agency?
    • Could you share with me 3 challenges that you have experienced in working with your preferred provider?
    • Would you be willing to try my organization if I can solve any of your challenges?
    • Is there someone else that is going home today that is just like my current patient, Mrs. Jones that I could also provide care to?

4. CHALLENGE: Contracting with Insurance companies.

Here is a secret. The busiest agencies in ton don’t have to chase after the insurance contracts. The insurance companies approach them to become a provider.

You see, when an insurance company comes into your area, they go to the hospitals and get them to become a provider. Then they ask who do you refer to? They get contracts with all the post-acute care preferred providers.

If you are not currently getting hospital referrals, you will probably be overlooked.

If you want to find the insurances that are providing care in your town just shop as if you are looking for insurance in the zip codes that you provide care. Here is the link to find the information Find Medicare Insurance Providers.

5.  CHALLENGE: Leadership can’t relate to the sales team.

I could go on for days talking about leadership failures when it comes to supporting sales reps. I myself as an agency owner have made many! Thankfully I have learned so much over my 28 years as a professional working in post-acute care.

Sales teams are like herding cats. They are loud, demanding, and want everything yesterday! If they weren’t they wouldn’t be successful. Now, of course, we have some really nice, people who are super successful too.

Often, it takes a strong personality to get past gatekeepers, and if you are not a strong personality, we have our Orientation and High-Performance Sales Academy that will teach you how to do it and still be your true authentic self.  But building a culture that supports sales is critical.

 

If you are an executive or owner and you just are exhausted managing your team, we got you! We are now managing sales teams around the country! We have expanded our team and hired a new incredible sales coach to support us.

Home Care Sales has grown so much over the last few years! We are prepared to expand even more over the next few years! Our sales management includes everything you need to go about your work of getting patients cared for while we take over the daily management of your sales representatives.

We include pdf flyers (personalized for your organizations), sales messages of the week with trigger questions, and all the teaching and coaching your salesperson wants or needs! What to learn more? Set up a time to meet with Mike@homecaresales.com (you can jump on his calendar here).

Melanie and I care about your success. We are on a mission to help every patient that needs and deserves care to get identified for services!

 

Let us help you by having you join in working with us!

Cheryl Pelekis, RN “The Solutionist”