by Shannon Svasek, Operations Manager
Let’s face it, telemarketing isn’t always “fun”. As an operations manager in an outsourced telemarketing agency with agents in a brick and mortar setting as well as in an at home setting, I know first-hand what it takes to make the job fun for the agents. But before I tell you my secrets, let me take you through the job. It’s not easy work. It takes dedication, self-motivation and the drive to want to succeed. Think about these items when creating incentives:
Ask Yourself the Right Questions
Making calls for eight hours a day, speaking to hundreds of potential customers each week, attempting to generate excitement and interest in a product on every call starting from scratch with each customer takes passionate persistence. Not to mention the stress of refusals, how to overcome them, how to achieve success, all to achieve that big goal set before you, can be overwhelming. If you are thinking that would be tough to do day after day and not loads of fun, you are not alone. Sales can have its ups and downs so how do we keep those “downs” from dragging us down? That takes some creative thinking for sure, it also takes input from your agents! What motivates them? What makes them feel fresh, not worn down and stay dedicated to do their very best on every call? What makes them hungry for success? For some it’s simple, they are just competitive by nature, have that drive to succeed and be number one. They are motivated by goals and numbers. Some need constant motivation, pats on the back and words of encouragement. They are motivated by positive reinforcement.
But what makes the job fun for all types of personalities? I’ve had tons of success with games and incentives. But the trick is to keep it fresh. You have to switch it up and switch it up often. Play different kinds of games. Some that have lots of involvement and moving parts like Bingo where each square is a different milestone. Some games should require less effort on the agent’s behalf to play such as tracking individual progress. But even those need multiple moving parts to keep it fun, not just one milestone, but multiple milestones so there is a possibility of multiple winners. Having multiple winners is actually very important because everyone wants to think they have a shot at the prize. Colors are very motivating and trigger emotions, so make sure you make it colorful. If your games are on a marker board, chalk board, or if they are on a drab spread sheet for your agents, they will be less likely to be intrigued, curious or drawn in to want to participate. Bring out your creative side!
Selling the Incentive
Don’t forget, you have to sell your game to your sales agents! Your games and incentives need to have multiple attractive features that draw them in, many benefits that make it worth their while to participate and they must be attractive visually to catch their attention initially. Some challenging but yet rewarding games to play with your agents that yield results are
- Russian Roulette
- Egg Hunts
- Candy Land
- Chutes and Ladders
These games can all be played without the agents running around off the phones whether you are in a virtual setting or traditional brick and mortar facility. Remember you only get out of it what you put into it, so get creative and let the fun begin. What incentive will you run next? How will you make it attractive to every personality type? What kind of creativity can you draw out of yourself? And how will you sell it to your agents?
Having fun in telemarketing can be tough and extremely time consuming to come up with new ideas. But the end results pay off. The time and effort you put into incentives and fun activities pays off. Quality Contact Solutions has evaluated 100s of call centers across the U.S. and we pride ourselves in the ability to strategically match our clients with a vendor that not only match their culture but are flexible, easy to work with and get results. If you are in the Inbound and/or Outbound Telemarketing Industry and would like some help give us a call at 1-866-963-2889. Or email me at [email protected] We would love to help!!
Shannon Svasek is Operations Manager for Quality Contact Solutions, a leading outsourced telemarketing organization. With responsibility for overseeing the daily operations of client programs, and agent success. Shannon focus is that her client programs consistently reach the desired goals – every day. With over 18 years of experience in Telemarketing, Shannon has built her career on creating fun, open and respectful relationships between her team and her clients which drives unparalleled success. Shannon can be reached at [email protected] or 516-656-5126.