REAL OFFLINE Business Owners. Has America Given Up?

11 replies
A while ago I started a thread or participated in one regarding paying commissions vs. wages to sales agents. I am now under the conclusion that it's infinitely more expensive to constantly hire, train, and recruit commission reps vs. paying sales reps with incentives. In fact, I am getting more production paying people minimum wage than I did when I tried to hire commission only. Sure, it's better for me but in my own mind I am astonished... What is going on here? Did the great Recession crush the American spirit?

To those of you who are actively hiring and have been doing so for a number of years, are you drawing the same conclusion?

I'm seeing weird things in our hiring process and even around here that leads me to draw the conclusion that this new America is not like our parents' and grandparents' America...

Here are my favorites related to my recruitment...
  1. "Does this pay cash? I only take cash?"
  2. 30% of phone numbers on applications and / or resumes contain a phone number that does not work. The only conclusion I am to draw is that these people want to show their looking for work - but praying to not actually find work so they can receive benefits comfortably.
  3. 15% of people had either an incorrect e-mail address, or forgot the "m" in the (dot.com) part, or something similar.
  4. Only 1 in 3 who schedule an interview even show up.
  5. A bunch hung up when they heard my colleague say; "Hi, this is Mrs. Smith, I have your resume in front of me." Click... maybe it's her, lol.

I could go on. At first I was targeting Craigslist, then moved up to Indeed thinking the quality of the applicant would be better. While they were careful to put correct e-mail addresses and so forth, it seemed that a lot of them felt "entitled." They wanted to do things like:
  1. Conduct the interview via Skype.
  2. Be sent more information on the job before they made decision to interview (*face palm*).
  3. Request very precise accommodations not related to any physical or mental handicap.
  4. Send in job application with elaborate proposals / pitches / offers to be put on salary for $40 or $50k guaranteeing results in the process.

Anyway... I'm jaded and am considering just automating more of our processes and installing over seas laborers into the processes that can't be automated...
#america #business #offline #owners #real
  • Profile picture of the author Underground
    I don't know if people's attitudes were different back then. If they'd been conditioned in the same way people have today for instant X-Factor success and the culture of self-absorbtion, they'd probably be the same way for the most part.

    People take the absolute piss these days though. Freelance sites and the job market certainly have more people who have no intelligent or drive. Just some of the stories I could relate about the weeks lost dealing with these kinds of characters in the last few months.

    There was a study about the rise of Narcissistic Disorder has shot up by a significant degree in the last 20 years.

    It's not all a one way street though. Many business owners are trying to attract top talent without being able to offer attractive positions.

    I've tried to make sure every position I seek proper pro's for are really attractive and meets what they are looking for in terms of experience, career progression, the challenge, earning potential, etc.

    Even with a great job opportunity to offer, hiring suitable A-player candidates and sifting through B, C and D players to find them is a massive challenge for most businesses.

    I would get the book Top Grading on this subject. It's a good solid process to be able vet candidates.

    If the job is one you'd repost on Craiglist if you'd got better responses, I think you could do with taking a look at it and improving on it. I wouldn't place all the blame just on people if the job was targeted at people who aren't serious and career minded.
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  • Profile picture of the author SalesGod
    My biggest problem is honeslty just finding people that are motivated to work and do a good job. Im always having people get hired show up for a week then just disapeer or like you said not even show up to the interview. I had a dude making 250 a day from commissions and he would beg to go back to working for $9/hour and ended up quitting eventually just to get on welfare and sit at home and play video games lol. i probably dont have the amount of experience you do with hiring but iv just found people to be lazy nowadays and wanting to have a steady income without doing much work. I feel like im pretty fair to, I buy donuts every single day I mean cmon who wouldn't want to work for me???
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  • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
    Originally Posted by TheBigBee View Post

    A while ago I started a thread or participated in one regarding paying commissions vs. wages to sales agents. I am now under the conclusion that it's infinitely more expensive to constantly hire, train, and recruit commission reps vs. paying sales reps with incentives. In fact, I am getting more production paying people minimum wage than I did when I tried to hire commission only. Sure, it's better for me but in my own mind I am astonished... What is going on here? Did the great Recession crush the American spirit?
    I don't run ads now, but I hired for a few decades. It may be that the economy is good enough that just the dregs are looking for work. When unemployment is low, you have the chronically unemployed..and unemployables answering ads.
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    • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
      Sounds like your messaging hasn't been targeting Superstars,
      that attract superstars.

      One of the traits of superstars they pay to get even better.

      Two who are employed as salespeople have hired me
      so they can get better.

      They are so ahead of others, it's a joke.

      One of them sold in a day what the room of 6 were expected to sell.

      Bring back cancelled accounts and he gets 100%
      of them.

      The all time record of subscriptions from one client has been 10.
      He brought them one client, which is still in the pipeline, 500+ subscriptions.

      These Superstars are out there.

      You just gotta know how to recognize them
      before they are superstars, give them the right training
      systems, constant feedback, reward them right so they stay with you.

      The one I mentioned, the company he works for didn't recognize him
      as a superstar in the making when hiring him.

      Now he is for them, they don't know his traits to hire more like him.

      They don't use the same script we created for him.

      They still use the old pump up the crew to go get em'
      that doesn't work for Superstars.

      They still don't reward him right to keep him.

      And so there are plenty of Superstars out there who aren't being
      looked after by their dumb bosses.

      Just gotta know how to attract them.

      Best,
      Doctor E. Vile
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      • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
        You have it right in many ways. Lots of people HAVE given up - but not for the reasons we think.

        To me, this comes back to basic human psychology.



        Look at every one of these stages and tell me, which ones cannot be given by the government, imitated by various internet services, or released via video gaming?

        What used to occur in the real world with real achievements, is now satisfied virtually. Sure, the person is sitting in a bug infested apartment - but online he is a master gamer, a social media star, and a sales/marketing genius at the same time. It doesn't matter that it is all fake. The brain doesn't know the difference.

        What you are looking for is people who will move up this continuum of needs in a way that makes you money. They reach self-actualization while fulfilling your company goals.

        And, you never know at what point they may be at. I was talking to a former star salesman for Tony Robbins (retired now at 50) and he said the very best Robbins sellers started with desperation. They are at the end of the rope. They are broke and usually around 40 years old. Some of the phones sales guys here could make $250k in year one with that organization.

        Your best candidates? Depends on the level of your business. But - here is something to watch for:

        Look for a person who is desperately needing to move to the next level of the hierarchy and will do ANYTHING to make it happen. Talk to them about each level - and figure out where they are - then sell them on the idea of reaching that next level.

        If someone is literally going to be homeless but they will make sales for you - they might be a gold mine. Don't pay them TOO much or they will get uncomfortable and quit like your $250/day guy did. You should have paid him $9/hour and kept making money from his abilities.

        People are in different phases psychologically and most of us are screwed up in at least one way. Changing and breaking out into a new way of life is SCARY and we all sabotage ourselves and do things that seem illogical.

        Don't put your employees in that position. Treat them the way they want to be treated. For many, making really good money is something they will say they want, but will RUN away from every time.

        Self sabotage is real. Find where they are in terms of basic human needs - give them opportunity for more - but let them settle in right where they are comfortable.
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        Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.
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  • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
    Just had an additional thought. Look for people who have a family and are desperate.

    Dont offer them an opportunity much higher than they made last year. Just a little bump in money, and food on the table, will go a long way.

    If the opportunity is real, they can't just quit or their family will suffer.
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    • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
      The biggest indicator of a Superstar I've identified
      with who I've worked with and hired me,
      is that they have an insatiable appetite to learn.

      They have invested time and whatever money they can
      come up with, to learn.

      An example: The one who hired me, is 23 years old.
      He had read the book Good To Great.

      The premise of the book was what turned around
      a previous customer who cancelled. He continually
      said the subscription to the magazine wasn't relevant
      for all sorts of reasons.

      Then he turned him around due to
      seeking if his prospect had read the book.

      He had.

      Now the prospect saw the connection.

      So, once you've written the recruiting ad,
      which is a function of marketing, screened the first stage
      and ready to talk with your prospective superstar is to ask what they read,
      who do they buy from.

      Now you can see if they value investing in themselves, or not.

      Superstar trait #1: Invest In Themselves

      Test for it.

      Best,
      Doctor E. Vile
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  • Profile picture of the author Arsha
    Originally Posted by TheBigBee View Post

    A while ago I started a thread or participated in one regarding paying commissions vs. wages to sales agents. I am now under the conclusion that it's infinitely more expensive to constantly hire, train, and recruit commission reps vs. paying sales reps with incentives.
    Well I think commission to Americans means "doing good hard work" to make money while here in our part of the world commission means "earning good amount of money (from employee POV)" and "enhanced employee performance (from employer POV)".

    Similarly "wages" to Americans means "doing little or no work and getting money" while in our part of the world it means "little or no money, being unsatisfied with the job (from employee POV)" and "employees jumpshiping, quiting, poor employee performance (from employer POV)".

    Now all of the above conclusions are subjective but this how I and those I know in corporate sector personally, see it.

    Originally Posted by TheBigBee View Post

    . In fact, I am getting more production paying people minimum wage than I did when I tried to hire commission only. Sure, it's better for me but in my own mind I am astonished... What is going on here?
    I think you are getting more production because (assumptions)
    1. Market is very competitive thus commission based structure doesn't deliver (as per research around 117 bricks and mortar SME's start each hour in America that exclude online startups).

    2. The people you have hired may be the individuals that have gone through a lot in such a competitive environment thus making them more polished, more experienced and so they deliver much better on minimum wage rate compared to commission based paying. I believe the people you have hired are the people who have been through the "commission based paying in an extensively dynamic market environment where it doesn't work" and thus might have been through a constant tension, mental stress and might have lost jobs due to that but when it comes to minimum wage, they feel satisfied and they know how to justify the wage they are being paid because they are HARD TRAINED.

    That's my 20 cents...
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    Originally Posted by TheBigBee View Post

    A while ago I started a thread or participated in one regarding paying commissions vs. wages to sales agents. I am now under the conclusion that it's infinitely more expensive to constantly hire, train, and recruit commission reps vs. paying sales reps with incentives. In fact, I am getting more production paying people minimum wage than I did when I tried to hire commission only. Sure, it's better for me but in my own mind I am astonished... What is going on here? Did the great Recession crush the American spirit?
    Hate to say it, but I think you need to really examine the job you offer. Can a superstar make enough
    money with you? Is the commission high enough and steady enough, or is stressful to an employee because it's not enough and/or steady enough?
    Signature

    "If you think you're the smartest person in the room, then you're probably in the wrong room."

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    • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
      Originally Posted by bizgrower View Post

      Hate to say it, but I think you need to really examine the job you offer. Can a superstar make enough
      money with you? Is the commission high enough and steady enough, or is stressful to an employee because it's not enough and/or steady enough?
      I was talking with my superstar sales guy I'm coaching today
      and what seemed like a dream job in the largest multi media company in his country,
      are run by idiots.

      What they think motivates and rewards him, do the opposite.

      Like not give him all the cancelled subscriptions when he gets 100%
      of them to renew.

      Nobody gets close to that.

      Today he was offered to be team trainer after 3 months on the job.

      It would create more work and less pay because there's no override on teams sales,
      no extra pay to compensate less time he has on the phone selling.

      They gave him a boat cruise in which he has no desire to go on.

      They know they have a superstar in the room, but don't know how to treat and reward him.

      They are screwing up the biggest deal the company has ever had
      which he brought them.

      In future, big deals will be handled at another level,
      therefore big deals and big commissions are taken away from him.

      Tonight he's followed up on a job offer from the founder of the fastest growing fashion brand in his country.
      The guy recognized talent while he called to sell him.

      He's creating a job that wasn't in his company to let him loose in it.
      That's a company has star growth and run by a guy who is a star
      because he recognizes star talent and creates an environment for stars to shine.
      4 year old company at $200 mill. revenue.

      My client, 23 years old, talks to and closes deals with country heads
      of companies like Goldman Sachs, worlds largest freight broker,
      top 5 accounting firm in the world, airline head.

      It's downright disgusting that people don't know how to treat superstar salespeople like him.

      Typical treatment of superstar sales people I'd expect.

      Rant over!

      Best,
      Doctor E. Vile
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      • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
        Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

        I was talking with my superstar sales guy I'm coaching today
        and what seemed like a dream job in the largest multi media company in his country,
        are run by idiots.

        What they think motivates and rewards him, do the opposite.

        Like not give him all the cancelled subscriptions when he gets 100%
        of them to renew.

        Nobody gets close to that.

        Today he was offered to be team trainer after 3 months on the job.

        It would create more work and less pay because there's no override on teams sales,
        no extra pay to compensate less time he has on the phone selling.

        They gave him a boat cruise in which he has no desire to go on.

        They know they have a superstar in the room, but don't know how to treat and reward him.

        They are screwing up the biggest deal the company has ever had
        which he brought them.

        In future, big deals will be handled at another level,
        therefore big deals and big commissions are taken away from him.

        Tonight he's followed up on a job offer from the founder of the fastest growing fashion brand in his country.
        The guy recognized talent while he called to sell him.

        He's creating a job that wasn't in his company to let him loose in it.
        That's a company has star growth and run by a guy who is a star
        because he recognizes star talent and creates an environment for stars to shine.
        4 year old company at $200 mill. revenue.

        My client, 23 years old, talks to and closes deals with country heads
        of companies like Goldman Sachs, worlds largest freight broker,
        top 5 accounting firm in the world, airline head.

        It's downright disgusting that people don't know how to treat superstar salespeople like him.

        Typical treatment of superstar sales people I'd expect.

        Rant over!

        Best,
        Doctor E. Vile
        "Without work, all life goes rotten. But when work is soulless, life stifles and dies." - Albert Camus

        I don't get why corporations don't get it. The data from common sense, research, ROI... for all this has
        been out there for a very long time.

        In the 80's, I had contact with the training director of one of the largest banks in the state. I don't think they had any branches out of state - so not a huge, huge corporation. Even so, they developed the resources to help their employees make better career choices because they realized the costs of putting people in the wrong positions. They had career lattices because they were smart enough to realize that not everybody wanted to, or should do, the management track.

        They developed situational films that showed people what a potential new job would entail so they could decide if they wanted to do it. They had tests to help determine skills and abilities. They made it non-punitive if people realized they did not want to move up the ladder... Not everybody has the leadership skills, or desires to be in a position where they have to hire, fire, train, promote, discipline...

        Back to your 23 year old superstar. I suspect he has what David McClelland labeled the need for achievement. McClelland's model for motivation also identified the need for affiliation and need for power. All of which can be tested for and used for their advantages. Growth hack companies probably have achievement oriented leadership. Affiliation leaders don't get as much done, but like to socialize. Power oriented leaders get stuff done, but create power struggles on down the line - shi* rolls downhill.

        I could go on and on...

        Anyway, it should be pretty easy to identify superstar traits and just let them keep doing what they want to do, providing reward and recognition that is motivational to that individual. Some people don't like cruises, or vacations for that matter. or, they can afford them if they want them.

        Years ago I read about some VP at Armor All. Got recruited and offered more money all the time.
        Did not want to leave because his job was "like playing pinball all day, I get to do what I like over and over again."

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Need_for_achievement

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Need_for_power

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Need_for_affiliation

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goal_orientation


        Dan
        Signature

        "If you think you're the smartest person in the room, then you're probably in the wrong room."

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