Smashmouth B2B Blog: Sales & Marketing Demand Gen

Can Your B2B Appointment Setting Team Stand the Heat?

Posted by Michael Damphousse on Jun 1, 2010 11:39:00 AM

B2B Appointment Setting, Can You Take the HeatSo, for a few days last week in Boston and her surrounding suburbs, it was extremely hot.  I'm not talking "spring time" hot, like in the upper 70's. I'm talking about temps in the 90's! 

I'm a big guy, and I can tell you this -- I can't stand the heat.  I hate it.  Some days I think the only reason I stick around the Northeast is for the sports, and there are days when they make me cringe, too.  There are days when I think,"Boy, the Eskimos sure have it nice."  Okay, maybe that's a little too far, but it got me thinking -- what's the temperature like for my appointment setting team?  Are they hot, cold, or lukewarm?  If they're hot, great, but how do you keep them there?  If they're cold or lukewarm, what can you do increase the temperature?

Let's talk about what you can do if your team is cold.  Surprisingly enough, this isn't the worst place they can be; that would be lukewarm, but we'll get to that in a bit.  If your team is cold and they're not producing like you'd like them to, here are couple of things you can do right now to heat things up:

  1. Competitions -- I don't care if it's number of appointments set in a day or in a week, or number of conversations with prospects, but build competitions into your reps' workday.  You'd be amazed at what people will compete for.  Put a prize in front of it and watch your productivity climb.  Movie tickets, cash, a DVD, it doesn't matter, because the very nature of the competition will heat things back up in your bullpen.

  2. Evaluate -- Are the right people doing the right job?  Did you build the team too fast?  Are some of them better suited for other roles?  Take some time to evaluate and move folks around if you have to.  You may find that the right person is doing the wrong job, and the right job for that person is just begging to have some added support.  Good people are hard to find, so put them in  positions that suit them.
If your team is lukewarm, I'd say you've got bigger problems.  You know what lukewarm says to me?  It says, "Meh."  It says, "Eh, okay."  It says you've got a team that doesn't really care about what they're doing.  They're just a bit better than cold, and nowhere's near hot, and harder to tell the differences  If your team is lukewarm, here are couple of ways to get them on fire:

  1. Clean House -- Yup, you read that right.  Chances are, there is someone on that lukewarm team who is ready to move on to the next part of their sales career, and they're begging you (sometimes without even knowing) to let them go.  Take a look at your team and see who that person is.  I think the term to coin here is "addition through subtraction." Removing a lukewarm player may be just what the rest of your team needs to heat themselves back upm especially if that person is a negative drag on everyone else.  You know who I'm talking about.

  2. Management? -- If your team is just so-so and lukewarm, maybe it's how they're being managed and motivated.  Take some time and really evaluate yourself as manager here.  Are you doing everything you can from a leadership perspective to help your team?  Is there anything you could be doing better to help your team increase their production?  If there is, get on it, and fast, before someone above you decides to "add" by "subtracting' you.
If your appointment setting team is hot, and they're on fire, keep it up.  "Keep what up?" you may ask.  Whatever it is you're doing to help them stay hot -- but don't leave without sharing how you're doing it with the rest of us!

Topics: sales, b2b, b2b sales, demand gen, outbound marketing, inside sales, b2b marketing, drivel, appointments, appointment setting, tips, introductory meetings, meetings