Senior Living Sales Training: How to Improve Batting Averages

Let’s talk about senior living sales training and batting averages.  The key ingredients to successful sales are B – A – T!

The B stands for behavior. 

Consistent sales behavior means the sales rep “shines” in all (or most) of the following areas:

  • Inquiries
  • Tours
  • Call-outs and follow-up
  • Sales calls
  • Events
  • Outreach – Networking, home visits etc.

The A stands for attitude.

  • Believing in your community and your team.
  • Having the self-confidence to generate sales.
  • Believing in the ownership/management entity.
  • Believing in the value of your community.

The T stands for technique. 

What are the sales conversion ratios?

  • Inquiry to tour?
  • Tour to deposit?
  • Tour to move-in?
  • Sales call to referral?

You can improve a sales person’s technique through senior living sales training, coaching, and mentoring. Practice and reinforcement help as well.

To achieve consistent senior living sales success, you need to balance all three of these components.

  • Sales people who consistently hits the sales activity standards but cannot close due to poor technique will not succeed.
  • A sales person with a negative attitude is a nightmare and poison to the team. (Your sales person should be the most positive and energized manager!)
  • A sales person with great technique who never hits the sales standards can still perform. But the person will not be the senior living sales superstar that you need.

In diagnosing poor sales performance, break down each of these areas. Then, score them to identify the barriers. Finally, create the right coaching plan to break down the barriers.

Behavior:

What are the sales activity standards that you expect? (Do they exist?) Where does the sales person fall short? The coaching plan would include setting expectations, time management, coaching, role playing, and modeling “winning” sales behaviors.

Attitude:

What are the underlying issues creating the negativity? Very often the sales person feels frustration over unanswered operational issues. After all, these issues might affect their ability to sell the community. Or maybe team barriers exist, such as a lack of cooperation in completing assessments. Other barriers might include pricing, first impressions, or unappealing model apartments.

The coaching plan should involve listening and working with operations and clinical partners to resolve the barriers. If the attitude issues stem from lack of self-confidence, for example, then the coaching plan would include training, role playing, modeling, and increasing sales activity standards to provide additional practice. Of course, some people are simply negative excuse-makers. The sooner you replace them, the better!

Technique:

Where are the weaknesses in the performance ratios?  Does the sales person struggle with converting new leads to tours? Or with getting deposit commitments from the tours? Maybe they’re not promoting next steps that lead to move-ins? Or is it a weakness in generating professional referrals?

Once you diagnose and break down the areas of weakness, you can create a coaching plan. Again, this will likely involve role playing, listening to recorded calls or mystery shops, formal training, peer mentoring, and modeling.

As an industry, we’re too quick to fire the underperforming sales person. Investing in senior living sales training could make a difference.

In our zeal for occupancy, we often don’t take the time to develop our sales talent. Sales is one of the only professions without a corresponding college degree. We have to develop consistent senior living sales training and coaching programs to ensure success.

At Senior Living SMART, we have many tools available to help improve your senior living sales batting average . . . and to align sales with marketing, which is also super important! Let’s chat about your needs!

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