Qualified Senior Living Sales Candidates?

Qualified Senior Living Sales Candidates?

Now HiringIs there anyone else struggling to hire a quality senior living sales person?  My search in Hemet, CA has been ongoing for four weeks.  The majority of applicants are unqualified and present poorly composed resumes.

Where to look?

  • Craig’s list can have a high success rate to find some senior living operational candidates but I have had no luck hiring senior living sales people through this resource.
  • LinkedIn has been good to me in the past, but I only received 8 applications in one month and it cost me $395.00.  It was very disappointing and an expensive dead end.
  • Career Builder has produced the most viable senior living sales candidates.

Quality of resumes?

  • Overall, I have seen the most poorly written resumes of my life in the last month.
  • Typos and format mistakes galore, candidates should have a professional or savvy friend review his or her resume before applying for a job.
  • Are nurses, EMT’s, mechanics and others in completely unrelated disciplines mistakenly seeking a senior living sales position?  Or are they just completing three job searches for unemployment?

Customer service experience is not sales and closing experience!

Order takers need not apply!  Sales and closing experience means having a sales track record with a closing ratio.  It’s a person who has overcome objections and persists until they get the sale.

No senior housing experience?

The last two people I hired had no experience in senior living sales.  They did have a passion for seniors and a background of sales and closing experience.  One of them was working in the healthcare profession and the other called on healthcare professionals as clients.  One of my specialities is training what I call “green” (no experience in senior living) candidates.

Interview process?

  • My first interview is over the telephone to see if he or she can be clearly understood, has a great phone voice and can sell me on why I should offer them an in-person interview.
  • The second interview is in-person with the Human Resources Director and myself.
  • The third interview is with the Marketing Director and Executive Director.
  • One person literally interviewed herself!  Next!  They would not stop talking!

The Results?

  • 60 applications
  • 10 phone interviews
  • Three second interviews
  • One third interview
  • Zero hired

Anyone out there in Riverside County, CA?

The Village is proud to be a debt free* Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) and has been serving seniors in Hemet, California for 25 years. We are honored to be voted as the Best Retirement Community in the Inland Empire for 8 consecutive years! Our 13-acre campus, including Independent Living, Assisted Living and Skilled Nursing Care, has been completely remodeled.

We are seeking a highly motivated Senior Living Sales Professional, internally referred to as a Retirement Counselor. In this role, you will increase occupancy by proactively generating sales leads and following up on all traffic generated through advertising, promotions, events, phone visits, and in-person home visits. Our Retirement Counselors offer tours with prospective residents and provide customer service to our current and prospective residents.

Responsibilities:

While this is a sales and closing role, you will get leads from hosting walk-in guests, events, phone calls or responses to advertising and marketing campaigns. You will combine inside, and outside public relations to build a professional, local network to help increase referrals and the CCRC occupancy. You will share the impact of: “A guarantee of care for the rest of your life.” Our retirement counselors use a consultative soft sell approach with prospective residents and explain the value of our senior services, benefits and how we differentiate from other senior housing competitors. Other duties will include completing reports, competitive studies and tracking leads.

The Village is an equal opportunity employer. EOE/M/F/D/V

If you are interested in this position, the complete job description and requirements are listed on careerbuilder.com or please send your resume directly to me at dmasson@fmcwest.com and reference this blog post.   Come and be part of a team that has been breaking sales records for two years!  You will be personally trained by me, start participating in weekly book reviews and report directly to me.   I look forward to meeting you in person.  Diane Masson

Your tips could help others improve on a national basis, so please share by commenting on this blog.  If this weekly newsletter can help your sales and occupancy – why not sign up today so you don’t miss a single one? 

Diane Twohy Masson writes this weekly blog to support and engage with other senior housing professionals.  Her first book is Senior Housing Marketing – How To Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full.  Many sales teams and organizations have used the 12 keys contained in this book for their weekly book review.  Diane is working on her second book to help seniors select their senior housing options.

 

© Marketing 2 Seniors| Diane Twohy Masson 2014 All Rights Reserved. No part of this blog post may be reproduced, copied, modified or adapted, without the prior written consent of the author, unless otherwise indicated for stand-alone materials. You may share this website and or it’s content by any of the following means: 1. Using any of the share icons at the bottom of each page. 2. Providing a back-link or the URL of the content you wish to disseminate. 3. You may quote extracts from the website with attribution to Diane Masson CASP and link http://www.marketing2seniors.net For any other mode of sharing, please contact the author Diane Masson.
13 Quick Tips to Increase the Occupancy by 3%!

13 Quick Tips to Increase the Occupancy by 3%!

  1. 13 Quick Tips in Senior LivingFocus on personal and team occupancy goals (visualize success).
  2. Expect the entire senior living sales team to have a good attitude.
  3. Treat every initial lead as hot until they cool off.
  4. Listen to prospective residents and solve their problems.
  5. Don’t listen when they say, “I am not ready yet.”
  6. Give a wow tour!
  7. Introduce prospective residents to multiple residents and staff.
  8. Always inquire about a senior’s timeline on making a move.
  9. Ask for the deposit – every time.
  10. Have fun.
  11. Represent a beautiful and clean retirement community.
  12. Call potential senior residents or their boomer children the next day after the tour.
  13. The sales team needs to believe and treat every walk-in or Internet lead as though they are ready to move in now!

Please share your success, failures or comment to join the conversation and interact with other senior living professionals on what is currently being effective to increase occupancy on a nationwide basis.

Diane Twohy Masson is the author of Senior Housing Marketing – How to Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full,” available for sale at Amazon.com.  Masson’s book will be required reading at George Mason University in the Fall as part of the marketing curriculum.  She is currently consulting with two debt-free Continuing Care Retirement Communities in Southern California – Freedom Village in Lake Forest and The Village in Hemet, California. Connection and partnership opportunities: Email: diane@marketing2seniors.net

Burned Out in Senior Housing Sales or Over Stimulated?

Burned Out in Senior Housing Sales or Over Stimulated?

Do You Need to Recharge Your Batteries?Are you worn out and exhausted?  Is it an effort to get up and get to work each day?  What happened?  You love your senior housing job – what’s wrong?  It is called burn out, burning the candle at both ends.

Think about how work and home life has changed in the last 20 years.  Smart phones live with us 24 hours a day.  The line has blurred between work and home and senior living sales people are getting fried out emotionally.  Are you cooking dinner with the smart phone on the counter in case someone calls or texts you?  People are in restaurants having $20 to $30 dinners and texting…this is not a nice experience for your table companions.

Get off the electronic leash for a few hours or a half-day.  My boss is taking a cruise and will have no cell coverage for 10 days.  My first thought was oh my gosh, I will be cut off from contacting her.  My next thought was – boy is she lucky!  Could you go without electronic stimulation for a day or a week?  Could I do it?  It would be very difficult.  But I would adjust after a day or two and so would you.

Take time to recharge.  If you are introverted, you recharge better by yourself.  An extrovert recharges through the energy of their friends.  Know what helps you recharge and spend one day recharging your personal batteries.  Your work and your family will both benefit.

Please comment to join the conversation and interact with other senior living professionals on what is currently being effective to increase occupancy on a nationwide basis.

Diane Twohy Masson is the author of Senior Housing Marketing – How to Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full,” available for sale at Amazon.com.  Masson’s book will be required reading at George Mason University in the Fall as part of the marketing curriculum.  She is currently consulting with Seniors For Living and two debt-free Continuing Care Retirement Communities in Southern California – Freedom Village in Lake Forest and The Village in Hemet, California. Connection and partnership opportunities: Email: diane@marketing2seniors.net

How to Train a “Green” Senior Living Sales Person (Part 2)

How to Train a “Green” Senior Living Sales Person (Part 2)

"Green" Senior Living Sales PeopleThis week I want to share with you which four techniques I used to train a new “green” sales person recently.

Last week, I talked about four sales training techniques in “How to Train a “Green” Senior Living Sales Person (Part 1)”: Shadowing an existing sales person, throwing the new “green” person in (with no senior housing experience) to just start selling, sending them out to study the competition and a dedicated all day training.

Recently, the first step I used training a “green” sales person was an all day training with the marketing team.  This was crucial, so she could have immediate knowledge of how this business works in a nutshell.  I interactively taught her and the team how to engage with a prospective resident, build a relationship in a short time and help someone make a decision to move to our community for the next chapter of his or her life.  She heard the successes of the other retirement counselors and she started to visualize how easy this business can really be.

The second step was letting HR do their thing and allowing her to shadow some quality senior living sale people, so the all day training would sink in a little more.

The third step was sending her out to study the competition.  This helped her articulate the strengths and weaknesses of our Continuing Care Retirement Community versus the retirement community down the street.  She truly saw the business through the eyes of the senior customer and learned what a senior housing interrogation, from one of our neighboring competitors, can feel like.

The fourth step was having her start to become a student of this business.  She started studying the web site, all the marketing materials and reading a senior housing book with 12 keys to marketing senior housing.  During training there is a half an hour here or an hour there, when the trainer (me) may need to address something that has nothing to do with training.  These can be opportunities for the “green” person to read a chapter of a senior housing training book like “Senior Housing Marketing – How to Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full.”  Part of the reason, I wrote this book was to help train “green” sales people quickly.

Actually, I used all the steps that I talked about in Part 1, except throwing them in to sink or swim.  Once my “green” person knew the right way to build a relationship with a prospective resident, I sent them out to study the competition and their eyes were opened.  They have no doubt that our Continuing Care Retirement Community is the best.  I think it is vital to get your person to believe in their heart that your retirement community is the best and a great value for the money – as soon as possible.

Good luck and I would love to hear your stories of what training techniques worked best for your new employees and why…

Please comment to join the conversation and interact with other senior living professionals on what is currently being effective to increase occupancy on a nationwide basis.

Diane Twohy Masson is the author of Senior Housing Marketing – How to Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full,” available for sale at Amazon.com.  Masson’s book will be required reading at George Mason University in the Fall as part of the marketing curriculum.  She is currently consulting with Seniors For Living and two debt-free Continuing Care Retirement Communities in Southern California – Freedom Village in Lake Forest and The Village in Hemet, California. Connection and partnership opportunities: Email: diane@marketing2seniors.net

Top 12 Traits Needed to Fill a Senior Living Community?

Top 12 Traits Needed to Fill a Senior Living Community?

Hiring in Senior LivingWhat is your recipe for hiring a successful senior living sales person at your retirement community?  There are so many qualified candidates, what are your must have personality traits?  When I interview, here are the qualities that I look for in no particular order:

1)   Phone Experience and Voice – The applicant needs a great phone voice to even qualify for a live interview with me!  What is their history of making calls?  Have they made 50 calls in at least one day of their career?  How many calls did they need to make in order to have one live customer?  Phone calling can be one third of the job to fill the building.  It is crucial to have ongoing phone contact with our leads to make cool leads – warm, warm leads – hot and hot leads turning into move-ins.

2)   Real Sales Experience – They need to be able to give examples of how to warm people up, find communality, do discovery and educate the customer on a wonderful service.  I need to be able to visualize them describing our Continuing Care Retirement Community or Assisted Living.  I don’t require a background in senior living sales.

3)   Closing Experience – What is their closing ratio?  How many live customers do they need in order to achieve one sale?  Did they close me?

4)   Listener – If they practice good listening skills with me, then they can do the same for the customer.  This is vital…

5)   Teachable – Are they willing to learn and grow?  Some people want to live in a rut.  I want someone who can morph themselves and strategize the sales presentation and closing techniques based on the current economy.  I want someone who is willing to be a student of this business.

6)   Genuine – Are they believable?  Will the customer embrace their passion?

7)   Sincere love and compassion for seniors – Have they ever cared for a senior or helped find skilled nursing care for a relative or neighbor?  Do they have a history in working with seniors?

8)   Team Player – Is it all about them or do they enjoy and contribute to a team approach?  Operations definitely has a team approach in caring for the residents.  Marketing works best with a team approach as well!  I like to hear examples…

9)   Motivated by helping others improve their lives? – Does this rock their boat or is it all money, money, money?

10)   Education – If they had the dedication to complete their schooling, then they can have the dedication to fill the building.

11)    Professional Appearance – Great smile, well groomed and speaks well – These are all a must!

12)   Computer Literate? – Can they type at a decent speed, navigate through Word and Excel and learn a new database quickly?

Please share your top 12 favorite traits in hiring a senior housing sales person or feel free to add onto mine…

Diane Twohy Masson is the author of Senior Housing Marketing – How to Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full,” available for sale at Amazon.com.  If your curiosity is piqued to inquire on Diane’s availability to speak at a senior housing conference (CCRC, independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing or memory care) – please call: 206-853-6655 or email diane@marketing2seniors.net.  Diane is currently consulting in Southern California for Freedom Management Company, the proud debt-free owners of Freedom Village in Lake Forest and The Village in Hemet, California.  For more information: Twitter: @market2seniors Web: www.marketing2seniors.net Blog: http://marketing2seniors.net/blog/