Do handouts “drive” referrals?

What is the value of a “good” handout?

I was recently onsite for one of my favorite clients. When I went back to the hotel on my nightstand was a “handout” I had not seen before, and I travel A LOT.   It was an envelope. A money envelope.

On the front, “It was my pleasure to host you.” And space for the housekeeper to write their name. On the back, “Thank you.”

Clearly, Marriott stepped up their game on their desire to gain “housekeeping tips” for their staff. I asked the front desk Manager on Duty about the envelopes. How did they come about? She reported that while it was usual and customary for the guest to tip the housekeeper for their rooms, many travelers did not and the housekeeping staff cited this as a “concern.” So to prompt guests, they created a money envelope. I asked if they had any comments from the guests. She said a few called down and asked what they were supposed to do with them and when the front desk shared that some guests tipped the housekeeping staff she said the guests reported: “They had never thought of that.”

Which got me thinking:

How many of our referral sources also “Never thought about Home Health, Hospice and In-Home Care”?

LOTS!

Without prompting, would they ever know about your care?

Of course, I believe the most effective way to share your message of Home Care is in person. I also think a great handout can support your message with a visual component and “sell” for you long after you leave.

An average sales call lasts about 7 mins with the unique selling point sales message being shared in 3 minutes the other 5 mins is rapport building and asking great open-ended questions.

What happens when you leave? In this analogy, do you have a “money envelope” like Marriott? Of course, not a real money envelope but an effective handout that is going to prompt referral sources to identify patients to refer to you?

Handouts are some of my favorite tools to extend the “life” of your unique selling point that week.

Clarity is the key on your handouts

 

They need to be easy to read as most handouts are just “glanced over.” Use bullets and lots of “white space” to draw the eye to essential pieces. Here the four main parts of a handout:

  • The “Hook” in the title – bring your referral source in
  • What is the type of patient that would be ideal for this “topic or service.”
  • Benefits of the patient receiving your service
  • Call to action (CTA)

A great handout can be used all week at every referral source to detail while you are there in person and to sell for you long after you have left.

Handouts combined with your sales message of the week have a compounding effect of driving home your message, educating your referral sources, impacting more lives, and bring home the “money.’

A specific home health, hospice, or home care handout each week is a TALL TASK. Many of you do not have “Marketing departments” or “Advertising agencies” that produce industry-specific handouts for your weekly sales visits.

Cheryl and I both experienced that too. We wished we had industry-specific handouts for our teams that supported our sales calls and helped us keep top of mind even after the sales call was over.

That is why we created the 52 wk Roadmap to Referrals. It is a sales system that not only provides you customized handouts (with your logo and contact information) but also LIVE training to give your reps the words to say that have triggered 1000’s referrals for our personal teams.

Do you want in on a system that has produced referrals for our teams?

…And have the EASY WAY to gain customized handouts without the HUGE cost of a Marketing Communications firm?

Join other agencies like yours who became more successful on the “map”!

 

Keep Serving Seniors!

 

Melanie Stover, OT

Co-Owner of Home Care Sales

 

 

 

 

 

How do you help 7 seniors in NC in one weekend get HC, HH & Hospice?

Last week was our family reunion on my mother-in-law’s side. My mother-in- law has eight brothers and sisters. She grew up on a farm in TN and was the 3rd from the youngest. All of her siblings are 70+, and since I am the resident “senior care expert,” I spent most of my time explaining the different levels of care and advocating for my aunt to get a caregiver for my uncle so that she can have a “break”. I was suggesting a PERS pendant for my other aunt, speaking to another aunt about hospice, and being witness to a discussion between uncles about purchasing medication from Canada because his prescription costs were too high.

Because you are a senior care expert, you have these conversations every day. Helping guide seniors to care options is not just a job – it’s a lifestyle.   I asked each of them had their doctors talked to them about home health or home care. Only 2 out of 8 had received home health. No one had heard about private pay in-home care from any of the medical professionals they see. This is not uncommon. Sad… but not uncommon.

Here is my take away for you from the weekend in NC with some of my favorite seniors (although do not tell them I called them “seniors”):

You are the Answer.

Without you educating your referral sources on how we help seniors in the home manage their disease processes, many family caregivers become exhausted and find themselves on the edge of a breakdown. Even worse, the senior may be all alone.

Every day you get the opportunity to impact more families’ lives with your AWESOME services.

How can you “clone” yourself so you can reach more referral sources? The Answer will surprise you – Structure and Systems.

When you have a structure like Sales Process or a Sales System, the structure does the heavy lifting for you. You get to add your unique personality and scale your business.

As a young sales rep – I fought structure. I thought it was more art than science. Today I know its more science than art (don’t get me wrong there still is some art!).

When you are confident in the words you say to a referral source – words that have been tested and delivered 1,000s of referrals for other reps – you have the skills to get those referrals without having to go through the painful trial and error process.

You know I love a good open-ended question, and just today I was reminded of one of my favorites…

“Who is staying on your mind when you go home?”

This Home Care Sales Trigger Question™ has delivered me more referrals then I can count.

It speaks to the heart of the referral source and quickly identifies a patient or resident.

This is what you do. Serve. Offer a hand. Give people peace of mind.

I am so grateful for the seniors in my life and my family.

Educate. Ask for the referral. Identify patients / clients. Serve more Deeply.

Sales = Profound Service.

Finish the week strong!

Melanie Stover, OT

Co-Owner of Home Care Sales

 

 

PS: Want tested and proven words to say? 52 Wk Roadmap to Referrals has your phases, questions, and education to “trigger” the referrals who deserve your care!

Join us and get on the “Map”!

 

Do you know why Dr. Jones Refers his patients?

One day I asked Dr. Jones:

Why do you refer patients to home care?

I was shocked by his answer.

He shared with me that, when he was a boy, his great aunt Cecelia lived with him. She was a widow. Her youngest nephew, Mark (Dr. Jones’ Dad) volunteered to let her move into his home when Cecelia’s Parkinson’s disease really took a toll on her ability to live alone.

Dr. Jones said, he remembered how much work it was for his mom to take care of his aunts needs. She needed quite a bit of care over the 15 years that she lived with his parents. They had to transfer her, toilet her, bathe her, feed her, and clean all of her clothing while managing just about everything (like medications and doctors appointments). All of it!

He shared that one day his aunt fell and ended up in the hospital for a few days. When she was discharged, they ordered home health. The nurse from the Home Health agency told them that she had a friend from a home care (private duty) agency and that someone would come over to see how they might be able to help make taking care of his aunt Cecelia a little easier on the family.

The next day Cecelia had a visit from the home care agency. They found out that she qualified for the VA Benefit because her husband was in the military. They were able to get a home care aide to assist with personal care for 4 hours a day on 5 days of the week. This changed the whole mood of the home. Now his mom had time to go to the hair salon and because she felt better about herself (and she had a break every day for a few hours) she improved her self-care. This allowed the whole family to benefit. Home cooked meals were once again being made. Laundry was able to get completed.  The whole house felt better.

On the way out of Dr. Jones office we ran in to his partner, Dr. Kirkland. He introduced me and told Dr. Kirkland, “Tell Cheryl about your Aunt Cecilia.” I got a perplexed look on my face. I thought it was Dr. Jones’ aunt. Dr. Kirkland proceeded to tell me the exact story that Dr. Jones shared with me.

At the end Dr. Jones said with a smile, “Aunt Cecelia is his great aunt, not mine.” He continued, “When I am trying to convince my patients to let home health or home care in, I always tell this story as if it’s my own because it becomes more believable.” I was blown away! Not because he made it sound like it was his aunt Cecelia, but because he cared enough about his patients to share a true story they needed to hear to feel comfortable with the idea of home care. By sharing this story with his patients, he is able to improve their lives! I hope we can all find more Dr. Jones and Dr. Kirklands!

There are patients like Cecelia all over the country that are in need of help to stay in the comfort of their homes. There are families that take on this responsibility and just don’t realize how a patient could deteriorate over the years. It is hard to take care of a loved one for a few days, let alone 15 years!

Thank God for home care services. Thank God that the home health nurse had a friend who did home care. Too many patients already go without care.

Now imagine how easily you could help your doctors’ offices to find their Cecelia’s? Well… we have your solution. Our 52 week Road Map to Referrals does just that.

Just watch the video below to find out what I mean!

Have an amazing day!

Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”

Co-Owner of Home Care Sales

Motivational Monday: The Life-Altering Art of Compound Success

Have you ever heard of Compound Interest? Many of our more sophisticated readers may be familiar with the term. Compound interest (or compounding interest) is interest calculated on the initial principal, which also includes all of the accumulated interest of previous periods of a deposit or loan. [www.investopedia.com]

Clear as mud, right? Well, I’m going to explain it a different way and I am hopeful you will apply this simple lesson to your life.

Just to be clear, I was taught this lesson years ago and it changed my life forever. What I am about to write could change you life as well. Could you use a positive life change? We are going to talk about Compound Success.

In the same way that money collects interest, so does knowledge, wisdom, experience, and effort. When you put a little bit in at a time, it will eventually become a lot. If you read 5 pages of a book each day, then at the end of the week, you will have read 35 pages. That means in 8 weeks (2 months), you will have read 280 pages.

Let’s just consider that for a minute:

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie – 291 Pages
Maximum Confidence by Jack Canifield – 277 Pages
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey – 381 Pages
The Oz Principle by R. Connors, T. Smith, and C. Hickman – 232 Pages
Who Moved My Cheese by Dr. Spencer Johnson – 32 Pages
Start with Why by Simon Sinek – 256 Pages
The Holy Bible – Around 1200 Pages

The average reading time for non-technical material is roughly 2 minutes per page. So this should take exactly 10 minutes out of your 1440 minutes you have each day. Not much, but consider the compound interest of knowledge.

Have you ever made it through a book that changed your life or outlook? I have. It stayed with me forever. It informs my decisions even today. So what if you could finish a book every 2 months with almost no real investment?

Consider positivity in your workplace. What if you wrote one employee or co-worker a positive note or email each day? Just one. That shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes. You can buy a stack of Thank You cards and thank them for being part of the team. Would that change your workplace? Can you think of a moment when a simple and kind word or compliment completely turned your day around? You could be creating that kind of environment at your office.

How about in your sales? If you made 40 sales calls every week and got 4 referrals, what difference would it make if you made just one more call a day? The numbers say you would get an extra referral every other week. Instead of having 16 referrals, you would have 18. Would that help your situation?

The trick is to follow Melanie’s favorite saying:

“With Structure comes Freedom!”

Don’t just try to read five pages today. That would be great of course. The better way, however, would be to set a time aside every-single-day for reading and card writing. As for adding one more visit, the trick is to make the visit count. Everyone has an account they should give more attention to. If not, who is not referring that should be? Who had referred in the past that isn’t?

Plan an extra around the same time each day if possible. If you are using our 5 Step Selling Process from our High Performance Sales Academy (as all the cool, brilliant, and highly-effective salespeople are likely to do), then your survey visit should be perfect for this. You can qualify accounts and prospect to unlock new avenues of referral growth.

Ultimately, making a daily effort over a few months can change the trajectory of your life and create Compound Success. Making that same effort over a couple years will literally change you life forever.

Have a great week!

– Jason

About the Author:

Jason Lewallen is Vice President of Business Development

for Home Care Sales

He can be reached at:

Email: jason@homecaresales.com

Phone: 615.815.7907

 


PS: Might want to consider…

If you are a home health, hospice, or private duty agency who struggles with:

educating your referral sources

not having professional handouts with the correct clinical/treatment info

not knowing what to say to drive referrals

not having time to train your sales team about diagnosis specific info

…then the 52 Wk Roadmap to Referrals program is the answer you have been looking for. Agencies are using this methodology to gain more referrals and position their entire sales team as experts.

It’s a plan for every week of the year and can lead to double and triple the referrals you are currently getting. The investment is a mere $500 per month. That’s less than a fraction of a referral!

How are you supporting your Skilled Nursing Facilities with Rehab during their payment changes starting October 1 st?

You have read and heard me talk about PDGM – but here comes another P – acronym:

PDPM!

The Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM) is the proposed new Medicare payment rule for skilled nursing facilities. It is intended to replace the current RUG-IV system with a completely new way of calculating reimbursement.

Right now you are thinking….Melanie you just have been saying PDGM, PDGM, PDGM for the last 6 months NOW you want me to learn about PDPM????

Quick answer: YES! Those agencies that know what is happening to their referral sources will be better prepared to support them AND GET MORE REFERRALS!

So let’s talk PDPM. I have a client who owns Home Health, Hospice and Skilled Nursing Facilities and he says this will be a tricky transition. The “therapy points” are dropping out of the payment calculation. This is interesting because as a therapist in a skilled rehab when I was younger the direction from my director of rehab was to make sure I “got in my points” and made productivity. Now what?

The real answer is its different for each SNF. The agencies I work with across the country are finding each rehab is preparing in their own way. That is where your AMAZING open-ended questions are going to come in handy! You know I LOVE a great open-ended question that can’t be answered with a“YES” or “NO”. One that is going to generate and stimulate the sales conversation!

And this particular one SHOULD GENERATE DISCUSSION!

Insider’s Note: Your Social Workers MAY NOT know the answer. Start at your normal point of contact but do not get discouraged if they look at you like they have NO IDEA what you are talking about. Many reps have found the trickle down message has not flowed to the Social Worker YET! This is an AMAZING conversation for the therapy department or administrator. Really juicy conversation! This is about THEIR business and they LOVE to talk about their business!

Ask:

Tell me about how PDPM will effect your business?

Once you understand how they are handling the changes and their fears THEN you know how to BEST POSITION YOUR AGENCY! THIS payment change creates an opportunity for your agency!

Want to discover the best tactics to take advantage of PDPM at your SNFs with rehab? We are doing a whole session on it in VEGAS at The Growth Summit!

YES! I want to HAVE THE BEST TACTICS FOR PDPM! SIGN ME UP!

Melanie Stover, OT

Co-Owner of Home Care Sales

Ultimate Growth Finally Achieved by Owners of Home Health, Hospice, and Private Duty Companies

How many of you would love to grow by 90%? Sounds great right? How many of you are willing to work 90% harder to make it happen? Now I bet that yes has quickly been replaced with a resounding NO! Why? Well maybe first off, you are already giving 110% of yourself at work.

I know how much work it takes to run a private duty company. I know the amount of tasks that need to be completed at a home health agency. Hospice organizations are always dealing with life and death situations. I get it! In fact, I own all 3 of these business’s myself. You can’t find a second to work on growth tactics and strategies. Now, what if I told you to hire a salesperson to work on growing your company?

These are the typical responses that I hear:

  • I tried that and it didn’t work, my private duty company didn’t grow.
  • I can’t afford to hire a sales representative; I can barely pay my bills.
  • They won’t be successful in this market, we have too many home health agencies here!
  • I don’t trust them. All hospice reps do is go out and have fun with their accounts.
  • I can’t stand managing salespeople, it’s like trying to catch a rooster!
  • I don’t have the time to hire, train, and manage sales representatives.

Let’s review these. First…

“I tried that, and it didn’t work”

Man, that has to really suck. You just spent all that time interviewing, and hiring them, and then you got them business cards, and made up some flyers, and that cost time and money, and then they didn’t bring in business. This is the worst thing that can happen to an owner of a home care, home health, or hospice organization. It makes me so mad when this happens!

But, now let’s look at why this occurred. Did you hire a sales representative that had a previous track record of sales performance? Did your organization have a structured proven sales process to follow? Did you provide an amazing orientation that the sales representative was able to develop an emotional connection to your services (hospice, home care, or home health), that they could transcend that emotion into their sales calls? Did you have clearly documented expectations of daily, weekly, and monthly sales calls? How many hours each week did you tell them to spend on just seeking out new business? How many hours each week did you ask them to spend providing customer service and follow up with accounts that already refer to your organization? Do you know why it didn’t work? Bad hire? Not a salesperson? Lazy? No accountability?

So what if it worked?

Imagine in the first month they got 3 new accounts that all referred one ideal patient and each patient brought in $3000. What if next month, they got 3 more new accounts, and the accounts that referred last month referred again? And what if that keep happening again for the next 4 months? Let’s look at 6 months of receiving referrals.

  • One month = $9000
  • Second month = $18,000
  • 3rd = $27,000
  • 4th = 36,000
  • 5th = $45,000
  • 6th = $54,000

Total Revenue bought in = $189,000 in 6 months

Even if the sales representative took a full 6 months to get going, you would still have covered the sales reps cost while putting some money in your pocket! Now next year, that would double. You would have $400,000 dollars in revenue from this sales representative, and I will share with you that this extremely achievable for most sales representatives. Is it worth it? What if you didn’t have to worry about orientation? What if you had all the tools given to you that you need to manage a sales representative in less than 2 hours a month of your time? What if your sales representative that you hired, had a clearly defined expectations document, an incredible orientation, an excellent sales process that works in todays market, and that sales representative had access to the industries leading sales experts to get any challenges they face answered?

Let’s move on to this one…

“I can’t afford to hire a sales representative; I can barely pay my bills”

Sounds like you are under capitalized in your business. You won’t be able to be successful without growing your revenue. You might have to be tasked with selling yourself. Now, don’t take this the wrong way, but not all of us where meant to be salespeople. Not all of us have an MBA or have had formalized sales training. Don’t worry I will share with you how to get what you need to grow your revenue. Hold on, it is coming soon.

Let’s move on to…

“They won’t be successful in this market”

OMG! If I had a dollar for every time that I heard that I would be a billionaire! We have worked in almost every state in the country and I will share with you, 88% of the agencies that we have worked with have been able to grow. Yes, 12% didn’t. That means for 100 organizations around the country that have tried and used our products, that 88 of those organizations grew. The average growth rate is 34%. Ask us if we have had a client that we have worked with in your market, we can surly give you a reference in your state!

Next…

“I don’t trust them”

The good news is, you don’t have too. If you have clear expectations on total sales calls, and the type of sales calls, and a means for them to report weekly activity with sales calls, then you don’t have to trust them. All you have to do is measure key performance indicators. Data doesn’t lie. Data is just pure facts. If you get more referrals and/or more phone inquires then they must be out their doing something. We can provide you with a key metrics document to help. Sharing this document with a salesperson and the intake staff will have everyone working of growth, and the results are shown to them each week. It’s easy and what you measure, matters!

Now, the last 2 objections to having a sales representative can be grouped together…

“I can’t stand managing salespeople, it’s like trying to catch a rooster”

– and –

“I don’t have the time to hire, train, and manage sales representatives”

Let me ask you this question… Do you think that the CEO at your competition has more hours in a day to work on their business? Does their workday have more than 24 hours? No! What then is the cause of the top 5 agencies in town that aren’t owned by the hospital? How did they get to be on top in your market? Did you look to see if they all have something in common? I guarantee you that they most likely have a sales representative, if not a full team of sales representatives. Not one of those companies has more hours in their day or has the time or energy to have management constantly chasing referrals and neither do you! That is why I want to share the solutions with you today.

You see, Home Care Sales is on a mission. We want every person who needs help at home to be identified from their physician or other senior advocate to get the services they want and need! You can and will be able to overcome every objection that I mentioned in this article by just reaching out to us, or by going to our website at www.homecaresales.com. We have everything you will ever need to hire, train, manage, and document key performance measures as well as on going coaching and support! We even have done a 52-week sales plan, so your sales representative becomes the industry expert that you long for!

Whether you’re a private duty, home health or hospice we have created a 52 week sales plan for each business line. Stop stalling and start doing! To set up a private one on one consultation just email Jason@homecaresales.com or email general questions to success@homecaresales.com.

You might even want to come and meet some of our successful owners who will be at our Growth Summit in September in Las Vegas. You can learn more by clicking here: Growth Summit This is an event for owners and executives. It is not meant for sales representatives. This event is where you can build a network of other owners who must deal with the same trials and tribulations of running a private duty, home health or hospice organization. Here is where you can get your next million-dollar idea!

Have an amazing day!

Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”

Co-Owner of Home Care Sales

Motivational Monday: Have you met Sonny?

I live by a small diner called (and I’m not kidding here at all) The Country Diner. It used to be called The Cozy Kitchen and many of those who live in my little town just call it “the kitchen.”

It doesn’t matter if you are a tourist or a long time resident, it’s almost impossible to go to The Kitchen without someone talking to you. It is the culture.

A few things to note about The Country Diner:

  1. They only accept cash. You take your new fangled credit card
    to an ATM if you want good cookin!
  2. Regulars get (and if the diner is busy MAKE) their own coffee.
  3. If you go there 3 days in a row, you will see at least two of the same people everyday with no exceptions.

One of the regulars there is named Sonny, and boy is he a character! He’s always got a joke or two (clean only) and he’s never afraid to start a conversation.

If you look at Sonny, you’ll see a normal guy. He is in his early seventies (looks like he’s in his sixties, but he’ll tell you exactly how old he is if you just talk to him). Of all the noticeable features, his eyes stand out. They are friendly eyes. He looks at people with kindness and maybe, a spark of mischief.

Today, he asked about my son and if his swelling went down in his foot. (Jonathan stepped in a fire ant hill this weekend). He asks if my daughter is liking cheer and if my wife has sold any houses recently.

If you have ever wondered why someone would move to the outskirts of Nashville (instead of the excitement closer in) it’s because they want to live in a town that has a Sonny. A town with an Ed and Linda. A town where folks regularly drop off cakes to the fire and police department.

As I left the diner this morning, I thought to myself… “What would I do if I came in one morning and Sonny wasn’t there?” I like to think that the diner would call to see where he was. Maybe one of the regulars would swing by his house.

What if no one did?

I live in a little town that was built on an ideal that we watch out for one another. My town has become the acceptation to the rule. When I was working full time for a home health agency in Florida, no body was looking out for my patients. Many were alone.

There is a good chance if you are in a competitive market, then many of your seniors don’t have this kind of support network. The diner they have gone to everyday for the past 20 years has no idea how to reach them if they don’t come in for a couple days.

The doctor is so busy, missing an appointment isn’t a red flag. Their kids are busy and only call once a week. The neighbors are millennials and they have never spoken more than a few words to them.

When is the last time you simply asked your referral source if they had any older seniors that missed their appointment? How about anyone who just got put on a new medication that has made medication errors in the past? How about a patient that looks worse this month than last month? Could it be their diet? Could it be their living conditions?

You have a chance to stand up for these patients. Not as a salesperson or patient liaison. As a neighbor who dreads the day that those eyes go from kindness (with just a hint of mischief) to sadness with a look of constant exhaustion.

I challenge you.

This week, don’t think like a post acute provider. Think like a pre acute asset. Sure, Sonny isn’t necessarily homebound if he goes to the diner everyday, but be there when it becomes too difficult for him to make his daily breakfast or (for our in home care providers) get him there and home safely everyday.

I hope someday you get to meet Sonny, or someone like him. It reminds you that behind that referral is a person and most of them are wonderful.

Have a great week!

– Jason

About the Author:

Jason Lewallen is Vice President of Business Development

for Home Care Sales

He can be reached at:

Email: jason@homecaresales.com

Phone: 615.815.7907

 


PS: Might want to consider…

If you are a home health, hospice, or private duty agency who struggles with:

educating your referral sources

not having professional handouts with the correct clinical/treatment info

not knowing what to say to drive referrals

not having time to train your sales team about diagnosis specific info

…then the 52 Wk Roadmap to Referrals program is the answer you have been looking for. Agencies are using this methodology to gain more referrals and position their entire sales team as experts.

It’s a plan for every week of the year and can lead to double and triple the referrals you are currently getting. The investment is a mere $500 per month. That’s less than a fraction of a referral!

Make a New Plan Stan!

Being a sales person involves more than making calls and holding meetings. What happens before you make a call is what helps get that next referral. Failure to plan is weakness of many sales people who just randomly go from facility to facility hoping someone will say yes and refer.

Planning takes time and that is time you could be spending in front of your prospects. This is why many sales people hate to plan–they don’t see it as a part of selling. But the key to successful selling is to include planning time in your day and to plan well.

Here are some tips:

• Make a list. Who are your prospects? If you don’t know who they are, you don’t know whom to call. Your company will have a list of past referral sources – USE IT! But if you are just starting out, you may have to generate your own list. This will involve research!

• Research your prospects. Have they used your services before? Are they using any home care agency? How often to do they use a home care agency? Who is the decision maker? Who is the gatekeeper? What is the office’s or facility business hours? – The internet has made this SO EASY for you! Most facilities are super proud of their building and their staff – look them up! Google your hospital and annual report – TONs of great info in those pages!

• Prioritize your prospects. Some are top prospects. You will not know until you ASK YOUR QUALIFYING questions on the 1st sales call. Your goal is to create a list so you can go and qualify and then rank the referral source!

• Make yourself a schedule. Sales people have a lot of freedom and often it is easy to waste time. To make sure you don’t miss any potential clients, plan your calendar! Add time on your schedule for planning. Organize your sales calls by geography (zip codes work best for me when routing). Google Maps and Speedyroute will help you plan.

• Stick to it. Cheating on your schedule is like cheating on a diet. If you cheat, you won’t make your goal. Make sure you stick to your plan as much as possible. The one month you don’t call on that prospect could be the month they needed a home care agency or they got a new social worker! They are likely going to reach out to the salesperson that has made regular visits . They generalize if you are there for them — your company will be there for their patients.

Sometimes you have to slow down to go fast!

If you are looking for more guidance on the best account types or the best qualifying questions to ask Join us in the High Performance Sales Academy!

 

Melanie Stover, OT

Co-Owner of Home Care Sales

Getting Past the Gatekeeper: Hospital Account

One of the biggest challenges your organization faces is in getting enough referrals for your organization 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 them, what is the biggest challenge that your sales representatives face today when out trying to gain new business and the answer is usually the same. Getting past the gatekeeper.

Today I want to share with you a few tips so you can get past the gate keeper and gain more private duty, home health, and hospice referrals. Let’s start by talking about getting into the hospitals in your service area.

Getting past the gatekeeper: Hospital Account

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 share 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 gets 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 patients 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:

What agency do you currently refer most of your patients too? 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 how do you help your patients receive guidance on how to use 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 the last time that you had to give a referral to a different agency other then the hospitals own?

How often do you have to give a referral to someone other than your own agency?

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 too?

If they do refer, great job. If not, thank them for allowing you to collect the data. Tell them that you will be back next week around same time so you can share some brochures and a price list, or insurance list. If they say a different date and time, document their request and let them know you will see them next week. Leave nothing behind but a business card and do not give them any brochures. (IMPORTANT)  This is a reason to see them for another sales call. Document your answers to all the questions that you asked before you forget them.

Remember to review what they shared with you and plan your next sales call content based on their answers. That information should create a great response with your follow up and can lead to more referrals.

[Link to YouTube] Watch this video to see the impact asking these questions can have on a referral source from my own experience

Doing Discovery is important! What questions to ask to your accounts is fundamental to the success of your sales efforts. If you believe your team needs guidance on how to identify and qualify their accounts, look no further than our High Performance Sales Academy! They will gain all the tools they need to drive referral growth for your organization.

 

Cheryl Peltekis, RN “The Solutionist”

Co-Owner of Home Care Sales

Motivational Monday: This Setback is a Setup for a Comeback

I’m going to describe a few setback scenarios. If any of these describe you, I want you to read on, but only after you say this phrase aloud:

“I am on a mission”

– Setback Scenarios –

  • You are struggling to get enough referrals.
  • Your referral sources are not responding to your sales calls.
  • Competitors are taking all the referrals in your market.
  • Other agencies are breaking the law to get referrals.
  • You feel your agency doesn’t support you.
  • There aren’t enough patients in your market to hit your number.

Remember, if this is you or your situation say it aloud:

“I am on a mission.”

Now, this next part may feel like a curveball, but …did you know that everyone loves an underdog? We naturally root for the disadvantaged and hope that they will win, even if it is against all odds.

If you are in any of the setback situations above, you probably feel like the underdog. In our industry, most salespeople are. Many clinical individuals from both your own company and those who can refer patients to you have a stigma built up against your position.

Even worse: You have patients and families that don’t know they have options. Your referral sources often have NO EDUCATION (and generally misconceptions) about what you do.

It’s up to you to rise above the struggle and well… you are the underdog.

Your mission, however, is bigger than your challenge.

Without you, patients go without care. The education you provide to referral sources and clients/client families is the catalyst for longer and better lives for your patients.

Remember how I said everyone loves an underdog? Every senior between the age of 70-80 is on the path to a fall. They are set up to miss their medications and confuse the medicine all together. They will go without meals and many suffer depression due to the loss of a significant family member.

They are all underdogs. I love them, you love them, and your referral sources love them. We know that we can make that 10 year gap between 70-80 (and beyond) so much better, but our referral sources do not. They don’t know there are answers. They don’t know that we have those answers.

Rising above means having the right mind set. Don’t focus on all the things that have went wrong up to today. Think about it this way: The setback you experience today is the setup for a comeback tomorrow!

In that way, you are not a failure, but an underdog. Everybody loves an underdog.

For every challenge you face, there is a life in need of your service. Remember what I asked you to say out loud?

(Reminder: I am on a mission)

Your mission is bigger than the obstacles you face. The reward is greater than difficulties you are up against. You are the best kind of underdog story…The one where the underdog wins.

Go and let your week change someone’s life for the better!

– Jason

 

About the Author:

Jason Lewallen is Vice President of Business Development

for Home Care Sales

He can be reached at:

Email: jason@homecaresales.com

Phone: 615.815.7907

 


PS: Might want to consider…

If you are a home health, hospice, or private duty agency who struggles with:

educating your referral sources

not having professional handouts with the correct clinical/treatment info

not knowing what to say to drive referrals

not having time to train your sales team about diagnosis specific info

…then the 52 Wk Roadmap to Referrals program is the answer you have been looking for. Agencies are using this methodology to gain more referrals and position their entire sales team as experts.

It’s a plan for every week of the year and can lead to double and triple the referrals you are currently getting. The investment is a mere $500 per month. That’s less than a fraction of a referral!