1. Join Chef Success Today!
    Get support for your PC business today! Increase your sales right now! Download 1000s of files and images, view thousands of support threads! Totally Free!
    Dismiss Notice

Pampered Chef: Bookings I feel like quiting

  1. I am not sure what I should do. I am so depressed. I can't seem to get any bookings, people are cancelling, I am doing everything I was trained to do. My husband and I are going through some really hard financial times right now barely making it by, this is my only job and I just don't understand how I can't make it a success. :( I don't want to bring anyone down. Just wanted to see if I am the only one who feels this way or if anyone can give some suggestions. Thanks for listening
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2005
  2. i understand

    I totally understand where you are coming from! My husband is the one that works and I am the stay at home mom, with 2 children (2 and 1). So times are really tough for us as well. I just started PC in June and i have only had 5 shows, and 2 of them were catoloug shows. Times for us are hard too. Not sure where the next buck is coming from. Well any ways durning the summer my children became really ill. One with chicken poxs the other with a virus. So needless to say I didn't do to many shows. Well this month is my first month of 2 shows and I can't wait. When my boys were sick i just wanted to give up and quit. I didn' t have time for this. But I sat down and thought of it. I put money into this and I want to get money out of it. Relax and breath it will all be ok. Don't give up with your dreams, you need thoes dreams to succeed!
     
    Oct 4, 2005
    #2
  3. pamperedbecky

    pamperedbecky Legacy Member

    4,498
    0
    Sorry to hear that Amanda! I know it's SO frustrating when you don't see any results from your hard work. It sounds like you're doing all the right things.

    Have you read Doris Christopher's book? If not, I highly recommend it! It's very inspiring and gave me an extra boost of motivation when I read it. Did you know that she nearly turned her car around to go home the night of her very first kitchen show. She was so close to throwing in the towel right then! And now look at her and this amazing company. I strongly encourage you not to hang up the apron!! Everyone has slumps and frustrations at some time or another. Not that reading the book will provide any magic answers, but it may provide an extra bit of motivation and hope for you. If you don't have a copy and can't borrow one from your director or consultants in your cluster, let me know and I'd be happy to mail you one of my copies for you to borrow.

    I know you probably don't want to do this, but picking up the phone may be the best thing right now! And don't even necessarily focus on bookings. Sure, keep it in the back of your mind if anyone sends up "red flags" of possibly being interested, but just make calls to chat with people. Follow up to see if they're enjoying their products. Ask what they're using them for and make suggestions if there are other uses for things. Contact the people you don't have email addresses for and offer to email them your newsletter. It's an easy excuse to call them and it will help you get more and more comfortable doing it. Promote some type of special show this fall, like an apple-themed show, a soups/stews/chili show, an easy gift-giving ideas show, or a cooking with kids show (this almost always entices people to have a show when they're "burned out" on PC because it's different and their friends with kids will like it). You can even tie in decorating cookies for Halloween or the holidays. When you call people to promote these, you don't have to say you're hoping they'll have one of them. Just tell them you're trying to get the word out about these FUN shows and if they know anyone who would like to hear more, for them to refer them to you. Offer a nice little referral gift too.

    Hang in there!!! Things are bound to look up for you. Do the people who have canceled want to reschedule? Maybe offer to do some of "their" work for them like sending out invites or getting a list of emails from her to do the e-vites. Good luck to you! Don't hang up the apron quite yet. At least ride it through the rest of the year since fall is such a GREAT time with host specials and stuff like that. :D
     
  4. Cookin'InTX

    Cookin'InTX Member

    63
    0
    Maybe this will ease your mind!?

    I too started feeling like maybe I'd made a bad choice in choosing to sign up to be a consultant. I have finally started to get bookings, but not as many as I thought I would get. This from a girl who has no family close by to help jump start my business. I have just started taking catalogs with my to all the different places that I do business and mention that they might want to stock up before the holidays for gift giving items. Mind you, I spend all of my free time on the Internet researching ideas for show bookings and increasing sales. Hopefully with the holidays coming up, someone will agree to do a Catalog show for you. I'm crossing my fingers for you!
     
    Oct 4, 2005
    #4
  5. jenniferlynne

    jenniferlynne Senior Member

    2,005
    0
    Girl, can I ever relate to you. Let me tell you my story. Maybe it will help, maybe it won't. I worked for a fairly big company for almost 12 years, making good money. Most of that time I was single. Well, then I met my husband. We dated and got married 8 months later. 5 months later I found out I was pregnant. I decided right then and there, my child would NOT go to daycare. I discussed it with my boss, and she agreed to let me work a night shift. I would come in as soon as my husband got home from work and stay until my 8 hours was up or longer if I was working overtime. My normal shift was 5:30 pm to 2 am. I did that for a couple of years and was getting tired of it. A job became available in our Computer Department and I applied for and got it. It was 3rd shift. 10:30 at night until 7 in the morning. Well, they wanted me to go to school, so I signed up for one class. It was a 4 hour once a week class. I would go straight there when I got off work while a relative watched my son. Well, 8 months later I was exahusted. I couldn't take the shift anymore. I applied for a different position and got that one too. It was a split shift 10:30 in the afternoon until 7 pm. This meant my son would have to go to daycare for a few hours a day (my husband got off at 3, so he wasn't going to have to be there all day). I decided to do it, so I could have a half way normal life again. It was horrible!! Not only did I hate the department (it was totally unorganized, and the people were not very nice), but my son was now always sick and I was using all my vacation time taking him to the doctor and still paying the daycare even when he wasn't there. My son also started picking up some VERY bad habits from the other kids. I finally decided I had enough and decided to just quit working and stay at home and baby sit. Well, I did that for 9 months. During that time I also decided to give Pampered Chef a try, and I LOVED it. The kids were driving me crazy and the house and all my son's toys were getting torn up. I decided to quit and just do Pampered Chef full time. I signed up in April, and I quit babysitting in May. My director (she wasn't in the picture much when I first started), neglected to tell me that shows slow down in the summer. We were struggling to get by some weeks. I tried as hard as I could not to ask my husband for any money because he has always paid all the bills and I just bought groceries. Well, let me tell you, some months I was trying to stretch out $200 for the whole month for 5 people (I also have two step-daughters that live with us full time). I thought about quitting so many times and going back to work. My old boss even offered me my old 5:30-2 job back. But I just couldn't handle the thought of doing all the driving again (45 min each way) and not seeing my husband through the week again. I decided to just hang in there. The two couples that I used to baby sit for ended up coming back and asking me to do it again and offered me a raise. I told one of them (whose kids are just part time) I would, and the other one whose kid is here every day, that I would just do it until Christmas to help us both out (I'm pretty cheap). Anyway, my classes haven't picked back up yet, but the last couple of days I have been making myself get on the phone and make those calls. I'm motivated by the time off that I had. I got to spend all day with my son alone, and still see my husband at night. It was great, and I want that back, and I will stay on the phone each night until I get there.
     
  6. MSmith

    MSmith Member

    232
    1
    I can definitely relate, too! Take a deep breath and believe that there is a plan for you.

    Here are some of my thoughts:
    *If you have PC shirts/etc., wear them everywhere.
    *Whenever you have a conversation w/ someone, find a way to bring up PC. *When you do get bookings, meet with the host in person to go over the host pkg so that you can build a relationship from the start. Offer a "worry-free party pkg"...you do the shopping for them (they reimburse you or you cover it), you provide plates/napkins/forks/cups, you will mail out invitations, you make the food at the party.
    *if someone doesn't want to host a show, be sure to ask for a referral.
    *make sure that you stress "Bring a friend" to shows.
    *as they say "fake it until you make it"....it is very important to be upbeat & enthusiastic about PC.
    *if finances are an issue....do not offer incentives outside of what the company offers, but be sure to emphasize how awesome those incentives are! Don't spend a ton of money on mass mailings if you don't intend to follow-up. Evaluate the $$ spent on business supplies and find ways to get more bang for your buck! (example: I have my guests catalogs in plastic sleeves of a folder).

    oops.. babies awake, gotta go....hope this helps!!!
     
    Oct 4, 2005
    #6
  7. rhonda4554

    rhonda4554 Guest

    My motivation is different...

    There a several reasons why I have also decided to hang up the apron...or at least take a different approach to my biz. But the biggie is that Last summer I realized that my son would be starting kindergarten this year. He is gone from 8am to 4pm...It kills me that he is gone at school more hours during the day than he is awake at home. And with my husband being a truckdriver (gone about 5to6 days a week) I really want to be home to make sure that someone has an active role in his education. I don't want to be gone at kitchen shows, or meetings, or on the phone at night when I feel I should be spending it with my kids (we also have a 3 yr old girl). So, I decided to not do anymore kitchen shows and see how far I can go. I have even turned down 2 kitchen shows in the last 2 weeks and don't feel the least bit bad about it...that's how I knew I had made the right decision. I also have a part-time office job that is as flexible for me as PC is, and when I did the math I realized that I can actually make as much (if not more) money working 15 hours during the week as I can doing 2 shows a week. I can come home from work and not have to think about it...unless my boss calls with a question ;) Plus my boss let me pick up a few extra daytime hours and gave me a raise. (That place would fall apart with out me :) And I also get to be home at night with my kids and not have to see them waving sadly as I leave to do a kitchen show. PLUS, I know that I can always get started again in the future when my kids don't need me quite so much. That's why it is so great that I can make this decision to put my family first.
     
    Oct 4, 2005
    #7
  8. bkwrm

    bkwrm Novice Member

    25
    0
    Idea

    These are some things that I do to boost my business. Just a little info about me. I am a full time stay at home Mom with a state certified daycare in my home. I take care of 5 children other than my own 2. My husband works 2nd shift so basically I am on the job with my kids 24 hours a day.

    So, during nap time 12-2 I sit down and work on a list of people who may be interested in hosting a party. I either write down phone numbers or get addresses to mail a "hey lets party" letter listing the specials coming up. If someone does book a party at a kitchen show I usually make sure that it is okay to call after 8 but before 930 at night. This way my kids can go to bed and I can have a little peace and quiet while on the phone. If I don't get a chance to make calls one day, I plan to talk on the phone during the next nap time. Then sometimes after supper, I will tell my kids that I need to make a few phone calls and they can either watch the food channel or play on the porch. I am constantly thinking of new people to contact.

    Another thing you might want to do is have a Mystery Host show, or and open house for early and easy christmas shopping. I hope that these ideas help you. Don't give up, this is the best job ever. Thanks for reading. Kim
     
    Oct 4, 2005
    #8
  9. chefjulie_sc

    chefjulie_sc Member

    104
    0
    Been there, done that!

    I too got really sick of PC! After selling my first 2 years, it got to be very stressful! It seemed like I was doing all the right things, making the calls, sending out e-mails, etc. but EVERYONE was SAYING "no" to hosting shows.

    I can remember hanging up the phone in tears & hating this business! :mad: I had an active recruit & a possible lead on another, but like you...I got sick of it. I didn't like begging people! I also took "NO" for an answer! (I've learned to be persuasive, and turn that NO into a yes!).

    Needless to say, here I am 3 years later, still selling Pampered Chef. I lost my first recruit. I lost my cluster! I also lost my Director! :eek: BUT, I have a new recriut, a new cluster, & a great NEW director! Plus, I have THIS WEB-SITE, WHICH IS AWESOME!!!! :D

    Honestly, I work about 2 hours a day + on my business, using the ideas that I find here on this web-site & "tweaking" them to suit my needs. I e-mail people so much, that they probably have my address blocked! LOL! I am a full-time mother of 4, under the age of 6!!! So, yes, my kids are running around my feet!

    In this business, there are "down-times." Don't get discouraged, just keep reading through these forums & start the creative juices flowing. I was happy to see that you are a Future Director & to me that is important! I want to be there (FD) really soon!!!!

    Let me know if I can help. I'll be happy to brain-storm with you! :)
     
    Oct 5, 2005
    #9
  10. pchefinski

    pchefinski Advanced Member

    664
    0
    Perservering is going THROUGH the severe...

    Amanda, I've been in that boat before!! I just read an article online about increasing direct sales.. The guy wrote about how we (direct sales people) frequently spread ourselves out across too broad of a "focus group" and then wonder why we're not getting a lot of sales overall. It was a real wake-up call to me, as I'm constantly feeling like I am spreading myself thin across the whole board, instead of focusing on one or two things. I'd rather focus on a few things and do really well with them. For instance, I've read posts on here about people focusing on theme shows, or just doing express shows. My director focuses a lot on Mystery Host Shows, and gets a ton of sales this way ($1000 shows add up!).. By putting a lot of focus on a smaller amt of things, you put more energy into it, and really start to get involved.

    Is there an area that you can focus on?
    ~ Do you have a lot of friends and family that like to entertain? Focus on the entertaining aspect of PC, and offer shows that cater to that.
    ~ Do you have a bunch of friends/family that aren't necessarily interested in hosting a big show, but that wouldn't mind getting together a few orders for you? Boost your sales/bookings with Myster Host Shows, where 10 people get $100 in sales each (that's only like 3-4 orders, as an avg individual order is $25-$40) and then the benefits are split among the 10 people. (I attached the flyer my director gave me that I use.)
    ~talk to local bridal shops, photo studios and ask if you can promote your bridal show/shower/gift registry through them. if you aren't getting any "yes"s, then offer an incentive (10% off or a free gift [season's best] with an order)
    Switch things up a bit.
    ~ Offer a Layaway Plan.
    ~ Send out a small, quick letter to your local schools (PTA groups) and churches promoting fundraising. You can add in a mini catalog if you want, but you don't have to--just make sure to include the Pampered Chef website.
    ~ Upgrade a catalog show to a kitchen show at a certain lvl of sales ($700, for example) --I've read about this somewhere, but not sure if we can do it. I did something like this with my sister, but I just gave her the $15 FPV as a consultant gift, so it wasn't a true upgrade to a kitchen show but more along the lines of a gift. But if you could do this, it wouldn't cost you anything out of pocket.
    ~ promote an Express Show, where you prepare the recipe ahead of time and do a quick demo/talk with the guests. Only takes an HOUR, and the host gets the same benefits of a full-fledged kitchen show! this is perfect for PTA mtgs, church grps, MOPS groups as well. Plus, you could promote it as a good "wrap-up" for a Mystery Host (or regular) catalog show, because all 10 people could come (even bringing guests if they wanted) and enjoy a treat, plus you could draw the benefits at the show.. [you can have this kind of thing at your home, or even meet at a local coffee shop or restaurant to do it. --make it fun and exciting!]

    Also, I've realized that I need to change things up a little for myself. If I'm not getting the kind of results I want from my current strategy, then I need to change my strategy. So many people keep doing the same exact things over and over again and keep expecting to get different results. If you always do what you've always done, then you'll always get what you've always gotten, right? I put flyers up and I wait. And nothing happens. So, after a while of doing the same thing and getting nothing out of it over and over, I completely set it aside and focused on something else.

    For instance, I just set aside posting flyers and sending mass emails and all that jazz, and did a mall show a couple weeks ago. I got 30 contacts, 3 shows and 3 possible recruits out of it. It could have been better, yes. But if I hadn't set aside everything else I was doing and simplified my life by focusing on that mall show to get the most out of it, then I could have only gotten 5 contacts, no shows and no recruits. So, I feel that I was quite successful with it.

    Since I've done this, I've felt better about my business. Even though I'm not getting the huge sales that I'd like, I'm not feeling like I've let failed myself and am depressed about it. Because I am motivated, and I don't feel weighed down, I can switch gears and focus on something else to keep my momentum going. I know some people can spread themselves across more than just a few things and be very successful at it, but I have to look at myself realistically and admit that I just can't. (Well I can, but I'll totally flop everytime!) I have to make things simple on myself, or I get too overwhelmed and just want to quit. I'm not sure if you're like me in that aspect, but it's really a huge release when you can feel like you're pulled together and not scattered so much. Besides, by taking all the focus off "I need more bookings and x amt of recruits, etc", now I feel more able to focus on helping my hosts get what they want out of their experience with The Pampered Chef--and since I've put more into that, I've had more bookings! People can sense when you just want commission out of a sale and when you're actually wanting to make it about THEM.

    Well, enough of my rambling I suppose. I don't know if any of it helped you. Lately, I've been getting more help from my own posts as I'm writing them, so it's kind of weird.. hehe. Anyway, I will pray for you, that your sales and bookings will increase tenfold and that you will be blessed in your business.

    May God be with you and bless you.
    ~ Amanda
     
    Nov 9, 2005
    #10
  11. This is my first post to this website. I am new and in my SS1 month and am loving it. I just want to say to Amanda, hang in there! Don't quit. Seriously, listen to what some of the other consultants and directors are saying. I feel so inspired when I read all the comments to you. They have a ton of great ideas. I too read Doris Christopher's book and it did inspire me. My director loaned it to me so if you have to borrow it, do it! It can only help. I am so glad that I stumbled upon this website. I am learning so much from all of you and I get so inspired by your posts. Amanda, my first show was a Mystery Host party. I drew names every 1/2 hour - 1 for host benefits, 1 for 10% discount, 1 for special gift (Seasons Best). I walked up and down my neighborhood with my 5 year old son and handed out flyers to everyone. My show turned out okay. Everyone had fun and I had about $250 in sales. Not a very high dollar amount, but it got me pumped up and I felt more secure in knowing that I could do it. Good Luck and Take Care!

    Linda Smith
    www.pamperedchef.biz/lsmith
     
    Nov 9, 2005
    #11
  12. cooknmelissa

    cooknmelissa Guest

    Completely Understand

    I know excactly what you are going through. I'm too considering hanging up the apron. I am a new stay at home mom with 2 kids (4,2) I do these shows and be as positive and enthusiastic as can be and NO bookings. I feel like I have to beg. :( To top it off I have no time to make my calls. I do what I can.
    I am so glad I found this site. I know I am not alone. :) Everyones advice is great. Hopefully I can use some of the tricks of the trade as well. Amanda I'm sorry, I don't have any advice to offer myself. It seems I would be repeating everyone elses awesome input. I'm not going to give up yet. I hope you don't either!!! Just do the best you cant do!!! It will come together soon! :D

    Melissa Blasko
    www.pamperedchef.biz/melissasmarket
    Independent Kitchen Consultant.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2005
    Nov 11, 2005
    #12
  13. Marg

    Marg Advanced Member

    663
    0
    Hi Amanda!
    I just read your name is this month's KCN in the "Congrats to our new Future Directors!" (I am on that list as well). So you are obviously doing something right. :)
    I am a SAHM with 3 kids and number 4 is on the way. My oldest child is 5.
    I can sympathize with you. About 7 months ago, I was feeling the same way. I was worried about bookings, sales, etc and I totally forgot my why. What was my why? To get out and have fun - first and foremost. I sat down and thought about what I would want from a consultant if I were a host and what would encourage me to have a show? The answer was simple - FUN. When I had this epiphany, my whole attitude changed. I go to my shows not thinking about bookings, sales, recruiting etc. I think about fun. It's the number one ingredient in all of my shows. Since that revelation, my bookings have increased ( I average 2-3 bookings per show) and have recruited 3 people and have a couple of leads, and my sales have increased as well.
    People can smell desperation - I figured that out. You are providing them with a valuable service - they are not doing you a favour by booking a show, you are doing them one!
    PM me if you'd like my email and phone number. I am in Oshawa all the time ( I actually live in Newmarket, but have friends/customers/relatives out in the east end) and can give you some support and a shoulder over a cuppa. :)
     
    Nov 11, 2005
    #13
  14. its_me_susan

    its_me_susan Senior Member

    2,053
    10
    (((((Amanda)))) don't quit! I think there might be an "increase bookings" tele-training on Consultants Corner. My director is having a training on this - why not ask yours for more support in this area. When your hosts start to cancel, have you tried convincing them to do catalog shows instead?

    Why not start cold calling schools and sports team coaches and parents (dance schools, Newcomers groups) - just to see if they'd like fundraising information. Maybe you just need to rethink where you can get business for a while; the private bookings can come from many of these places while you make the phone calls. Hand out catalogs wherever you go.

    Good luck!
    Susan
     
    Nov 11, 2005
    #14
Have something to add?

Draft saved Draft deleted