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Pampered Chef: Bookings Phone and bookings vent

  1. babywings76

    babywings76 Legend Member Gold Member

    7,305
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    I just need to vent for a minute. I really am frustrated w/ making calls. No matter what time of day I call, I get machines. Here I am at home ALL day long and whenever I try people no one answers. I have children climbing all over me and making noise most of the time during the day, so my opportunities are limited. I had a breakdown on my husband the other night about how it's crucial that I get some evening time to make calls. He doesn't get home till 8 most nights. Then it's chaos here w/ the kids excited to see daddy. They fight for his attention. He's trying to change out of his shirt and tie and eat dinner. We're trying to get the kids to bed, etc. It's just HARD! So I finally get him to let me have some time. Then after finally getting time, I had zero luck reaching people still!

    I just can't stand it! It really is the most frustrating thing about the biz. I love this job! I love doing shows! I love getting out of the house and meeting people and teaching them recipes and inspiring them to get cooking and try out our things. BUT I need bookings in order to do this!

    I've gotten leads while I'm out and about, but nothing ever comes of them. Oh people always ask and say they are interested..but then the phone thing comes into play. THey aren't reachable and they don't return calls. I try again, but still no luck. After having a terrible experience w/ a host, I'm super self-conscious of calling people. I'm scared of people thinking I'm harassing them and getting frustrated w/ me. I'm always happy and upbeat and positive (it's just on here that I let the negativity out) w/ my contacts and try to offer great customer service. But it isn't getting me anywhere.

    DH and I also had a big talk the other night about what my expectations are w/ the biz. What makes me happy? Am I content w/ just getting one show/order in to stay active? He thinks I spend so much time on this and that the point of having a home business is so that things can get done during the day. If a lot of the work is evening related, it's just not going to work. He doesn't get any time to do some of the things he needs to get done and he hates not getting to spend time w/ me as well. He doesn't care that he doesn't have time for a hobby, just as long as he has time w/ me and the kids. If I'm sad and depressed that my business isn't what I want it to be, he gets frustrated that this isn't what we intended the business to do for me. I need to just accept the fact that I'm a hobby consultant. Maybe as the kids get older it'll give me more time to work it. But right now w/ his work schedule and church responsibilities it's just impossible for me to expect to be able to do more than I am.

    I don't know, maybe I'm rambling and not making sense. But I'm very frustrated. I guess I see how great PC is, and love all these incentives and opportunities they offer and I get discouraged that I can't reach them. Like Disney....I want it so bad. But it's NEVER going to happen for us. I can't earn it w/ one or 2 shows a month! And not a single recruit. It's just sad. I feel like my head is so full of knowledge of how I could do it, but the time it takes to do those things is just not available to me.

    Sorry to vent...I just need to get it out. I guess it's also frustrating because here I am spending time and money to go to conference, and I'm not going to be able to really do anything w/ what I learn. Okay that sounded bad. I don't mean that conference isn't valuable to everyone...I'm still excited to go and learn and get pumped up w/ new ideas. And I hope it just helps so that I have great success w/ what I can do.
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #1
  2. diradt

    diradt Member

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    Have Faith... I was there a couple months ago and was about to quit BUT starting going to cluster meetings really boomed my business. It is time away from your hubby but if you are getting out and enjoying your business--you will be a happy wife.

    And as the physician I work for say: "A happy wife is a happy life!" (imagine that in a Korean accent)

    Try picking a night to do something with the husband (even if it is sitting on the porch after bedtime) to reconnect and pick a night to work on your business. Both of you are getting what you need. It's a hard balance but I am sure that you can do it!!
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #2
  3. Liquid Sky

    Liquid Sky Advanced Member

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    Here's an article from Belinda Ellsworth that touches on your situation:

    SUBJECT: Summer Strategies – Part 6 – THE KIDS are home…how can I work?

    Today we discuss the other factor in the summer that can make running a home business a challenge. HELP! The kids are home from school and I’ve lost all sense of balance!!!!!!!!

    PLEASE! Read on… Even if you do not have school aged children in your life, the chances are good that you have (or will have) a team member facing this challenge.

    With the children home, all semblance of a reliable schedule goes out the window. Does this mean you put your business in the closet until September? Certainly not! THIS is where the advantages of a home based business are fullest. Parents working traditional jobs outside the home scramble in the summer, often piecing together childcare for their children normally in school in a catch-as-catch can manner. Expensive day camps or dependence on friends, relatives or college aged children becomes a necessary and often expensive necessity.

    As home-based business people, we have the best of both worlds; the ability to have fun with our children in the summer as well as the opportunity to earn an income.

    Thinking outside the box, as well as using some of these tried and true solutions will help you to work and build your business this summer into a bountiful fall.

    1. REMEMBER THE BUDDY SYSTEM! Just as we teach our children not to swim or hike without a buddy, a “summer buddy” is key to your summer business as well.

    a.Trade time for time with another home-based business mom (preferably with kiddos your own children’s ages.

    B. A summer buddy can be a great source of encouragement for both of you as you work towards your business goals.

    2. AN EGG TIMER ISN’T JUST FOR EGGS ANYMORE! School aged children and preschoolers alike can understand the concept of mommy does phoning for 30 minutes and then mommy plays for 30 minutes. A simple egg or oven timer does the trick!

    3. BE IN THE MOMENT! Here’s the deal…when you promise that you will read a story or play a game for 30 minutes with the kids, then DO IT! Answering machine on….NO EXCEPTIONS!

    4. HEY MOM, what’s in it for me? Have a special “activities” box. Let the kids make suggestions of fun things they might like to do this summer. Check out all the free and low cost activities in your area…many places like the zoo and local museums have a specific FREE DAY. Then, designate one day a week that is “field trip” day. That’s the day the kids get to pick something out of the box to do. Remind them, that when Mommy’s out doing parties, she’s making some extra money so that you can afford these extra summer fun activities.

    5. Make sure your calendar is extra full! After all the “fun” you are having with your kids home all the time during the summer, you’ll want to be sure that your calendar is extra full. You will probably be ready for a break by the time evening roles around. It’s a win-win situation. You’ll be earning extra money that really comes in handy in the summer, you’ll get some “adult” time, AND you’ll be building a strong base for a dynamite fall.
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #3
  4. Jennie4PC

    Jennie4PC Legacy Member

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    Amanda,
    Take 1st of all take a deep breath. I can totally see where you are coming from. I hate doing phone calls because of the whole answering machine. Calls will probably be harder now cause DS is out of school and it seems like every time I pick up the phone my kids start screaming.
    For phone calls do you have a YW from church that would be willing to come to your house for a little bit to play with your kids while you make calls?
    For booking shows sit down with DH and have him help you decide what days to do shows. Do to DH church calling I cant do shows on Tues. so Sun- Tues is out for me.
    Also a big wake up call for DH with me doing the business was when I earned level 1, 2 yrs ago and took the gift card and was able to take DH and kids out to nice places.
    As for conference everyone says it is so worth going and it will rejump start your business cause of the wealth of information. Conference is the only thing I have yet to convince DH to let me do.
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #4
  5. 1234blessed

    1234blessed Novice Member

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    I can totally relate with you. I have 2 kids & trying to make calls during the day is almost impossible. I have been in PC since Feb. & I have only had 1 show a month. I too feel like there is so much to offer others, but people who said they would do a show are now avoiding the phone. My DH says to stay positive that things will come around. I really want a strong June so I can earn free fall product. I'm going for the $1500 goal & I have sent mail, email, & phone calls, but only have 2 shows for this month. If anyone has any ideas for us please share! BTW this is my 1st post, I have been a member for about a month & just been reading what everyone has to say!
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #5
  6. babywings76

    babywings76 Legend Member Gold Member

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    Thanks for sharing this. I'm going to try to do some of these. I've tried some of them, but maybe not fully.

    For example: My older 2 kids are 9 and 7 and were so excited to hear about the Disney trip. So I told them about how my phone calling time was very important and if I could count on them to help me out a bit. I told them "Ok, I'm going to make just a few phone calls. I'll be in the office w/ the door shut. Please keep your brother and sister (the 3 1/2 yr old and the 19 month old) happy for a little while. Play w/ them with the blocks or put on an episode of their favorite show. I'll try to be quick. Please no fighting. Please." THen in just 2 minutes I have the baby banging on the door and I can hear the 7 yr old fighting w/ the 3 yr old and I only got one call done. Ugg.

    But maybe by setting an actual timer it will help. I like the other ideas as well. I'm going to have to try them. THanks! :)
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #6
  7. Liquid Sky

    Liquid Sky Advanced Member

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    I hear ya! I have a 10, 3 and 1 year old. It's amazing how they all begin to fight, cry, knock on the door..etc...the SECOND I pick up the phone. I have even, at times, sat in my car in the garage so I can have silence when I place calls.

    After a while they'll get used to the "phone routine" and it will be easier for everyone to handle it all :)
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #7
  8. babywings76

    babywings76 Legend Member Gold Member

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    Thanks for the support. I appreciate it. :)

    I love the idea about getting one of the YW over, but DH doesn't want me to have to pay for childcare since that's the point of my being "home".

    DH just got called to be the Elder's Quorum President, so he's already planning when his presidency meetings will be and scheduling activities and service projects and everything--all which will be on Saturdays. Meaning that now my availability is getting even smaller, not to mention our family time. :(

    In our little heart to heart the other night, he was starting to freak out about all these little pulls on our time. I told him that we need to plan the months now. No more waiting to the last minute to do things. I need to know when his duties are going to occupy him, then we'll schedule family time and date nights. Then if there's any left overs, that's where my shows can happen. But, it's not like people are banging down my door begging for dates anyway, so my availability isn't an issue right now. :rolleyes:

    I'll get off this pity party and get back to work. I do have to focus on the things that are working and the hosts and guests I DO have. So hopefully I'll get out of this funk soon. :D

    Thanks again guys, for letting me vent.
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #8
  9. crystalscookingnow

    crystalscookingnow Senior Member Gold Member

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    Hi Amanda - I don't have much advice for you... In fact, I'm feeling exactly the same way. I was really gung-ho about Disney, but I'm just not feeling it anymore. I know that's terrible to say. I've been doing this since July '05 and it just feels like it's taking more energy than I have right now (especially with my stomach troubles). I sometimes think I'd like to say to heck with it all, but I'm not sure that's the right answer either.

    I'm right there with you on the phone calls. I really dislike having to plead/beg/whatever to get two phone calls in.

    Hugs!
     
  10. ChefMichele1

    ChefMichele1 Member

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    The phone is everyone's issue. I don't even like to talk on it to make personal calls. I work full-time on top of pc full-time. I don't get lunches or breaks (small office) and have to eat at my desk all day. I have full access to email since I'm stuck in front of my computer all day so I try to utilize that as much as possible. I have been working with my upline with helping me "find phone time". Between her advise and many many MANY workshops and trainings I've taken at conferences, here's what I've started doing: make office hours and be sure to schedule days/nights off. I have designated Monday and Tuesday evenings (usually between 6:45 - 8) as booking hours. I try to make as many calls on Monday so that if they happen to call me back on Tuesday I have time to follow-up. I also started a booking/recruiting binder from a director I just met at New Director Academy. She sent me her outline (once I figure out how to upload it I will). I put it together right after I got back and have been using it for several weeks and it has made phone calls much less effortless. A lot of people have paperwork "piles" and sticky notes and lists and DPS,etc of notes and who to call. This binder has helped me soooo much. I bring it with me everywhere and no longer need to search for my "things to do" list, booking slips, recruit leads etc. I know it seems like a neverending dilema, but I am finally starting to put together a system to help make it work. Good luck:)
     
  11. esavvymom

    esavvymom Legend Member Staff Member

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    Hi Amanda,

    I haven't read through each post they others have left, because I want to hit the phones myself today. But I wanted to share something I recently came across and am going to try myself this week. I'm hoping it gives you encouragement and a new reason to keep trying- just a little more.....see what happens from there.

    I had listened to the WOW Calls I told you all about a few weeks ago, and especially liked Nancy Jo's Host Coaching one (call #3). I was inspired by Susanne Cain's (sp?) story of what she did last year. She was managing a couple shows a month. After NC, she came home and decided to jump onto the "Top 50 Sales Challenge" that had been given in June. This is the same challenge just issued last week I think for THIS summer. So she said she started making phone calls. She made lists of "potential hosts", "past hosts", "preferred customers" and called relentless. 30, 40, 70 calls a day. She said she MOSTLY got voicemail also. (I think people use Caller ID- I know I usually do! I figure if it's important, they'll leave a message. ). Here is what she said she would say on the message:

    Hi! This is Susanne Cain (your name here!). I haven’t talked to you in a long time. I just wanted to let you know what is going on with The Pampered Chef. This month, I’m doing meals-in-minutes shows where you can learn how to do Chicken Fajitas in the microwave in about 15 minutes. I’m offering some special incentives for my hosts because I’m working towards the Top-50 Sales challenge and I’d love for you to be one of those hosts to help me do that!

    Please give me a call at xxx-xxx-xxxx.


    She said the amazing thing was, PEOPLE CALLED HER BACK! She ended up booking 10 shows in August (including 2 cat.shows I think it was). Those 10 shows turned into 28 shows for Sept/Oct, and SHE GOT THE TOP_50 SALES CHALLENGE!!! In one month! SHe also went on to earn TPC and the trip to PARIS this year! I was inspired!! She did these calls right after NC and still got all of that! (Her sales before that were less than $2000 a month I think?)

    So I tell you this, because it can give you some words and hopefully give you hope to keep trying. I don't know what message you are leaving, but maybe come up with your "special incentive" for your hosts. I'm offering a "Free Cooking" show (ingredients for 1 recipe/beverage, invites, plates/cups/forks, etc), and a $15 gift certifcate for June and $10 gc for July bookings. Plus each host goes into a drawing for a new Trifle Bowl.

    I can't say it's worked for me YET- because I just typed her message/notes yesterday and made my list of calls to make last night. I'm going to hit the phones this week and see what happens!

    But let's do this together and keep it up! Who knows, maybe we can meet up when WE get that Top-50 sales challenge!! :sing:
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #11
  12. chefjeanine

    chefjeanine Senior Member Gold Member

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    One bit of advice. Have you ever heard it said "don't complain down"? That means you should not complain to your recruits (or customers) about your business. When you have a problem vent up to your recruiter or Director (or come here -- as you did).

    I strongly recommend that you also don't vent to your husband. My husband is SUPER supportive but after 8 years in the biz, I've run into many people with unsupportive spouses. One thing I've learned from these folks: don't share your business troubles with your spouse. An unsupportive spouse doesn't understand how this business works and doesn’t really care. Every time you complain, he/she sees it as yet another reason for you to stop being a Consultant. There will be rough times but that doesn't mean that it will always be that way. Talk to someone who understands.

    I'd also have to question the idea that you’re staying home means you can't ever have assistance with child care. I wouldn’t go for that. :confused:
     
    Jun 2, 2009
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  13. babywings76

    babywings76 Legend Member Gold Member

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    Yeah! I got a booking! Woohoo!
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #13
  14. ChefBeckyD

    ChefBeckyD Legend Member Gold Member

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    I totally agree with this post!


    And the part about childcare? What???

    If you can't pay for childcare, can you trade a day/evening with another SAHM? I have a friend who has a home business (doing window coverings) and we help each other out...she watches my DS for me when I need help, and when she needs to meet w/ a client and her DH isn't available, she brings her little guy over here.

    Matter of fact, he's coming over this evening...I have a show, but DH is going to watch the boys!:D
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #14
  15. babywings76

    babywings76 Legend Member Gold Member

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    See, trading childcare I can do. But to pay for childcare so I can work my business eats part of my commission. I'm not earning that much, so to then take another part of it away really makes it like I'm working for nothing. KWIM?
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #15
  16. ChefMichele1

    ChefMichele1 Member

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    At NC last year, I met two consultants from Indiana who swap childcare to make calls. They each pick like a day or two then swap kids for the each other. Who better to truly understand the needs of the biz:) Good luck.
     
  17. Liquid Sky

    Liquid Sky Advanced Member

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    GREAT JOB!!!! See, you CAN do this :D
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #17
  18. DebbieJ

    DebbieJ Legend Member

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    This is not from Belinda. It's from Success Factory.
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #18
  19. Jennie4PC

    Jennie4PC Legacy Member

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    Amanda,
    Happy to hear that you got a booking that is awsome.
    I know how that goes with DH being Elders Quarum pres. Thats what DH is his meetings are every Tues night. He works retail so he doesnt have every Sat off so he does his service projects when he gets a chance. Sending good vibes for more bookings.
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #19
  20. Liquid Sky

    Liquid Sky Advanced Member

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    OOPs...you're right :blushing:
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #20
  21. Nanisu

    Nanisu Veteran Member Gold Member

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    How about taking your kids to like library story time and then sitting in the car and calling? Or something like that????
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #21
  22. cincychef

    cincychef Advanced Member

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    You have gotten some great advice on here! I will be taking some of it myself. I just wanted to chime in on the child care. I have had to pay childcare for lots of shows even before I was doing enough of them to make it worthwhile. If you can figure out some of the ideas for free/ swapping childcare that is great. But I have found that when I paid for childcare I worked and grew my business. I had too!
    Also you CAN make this a real business. Last year was my year to give it my all or quit, and I would say I had an unsupportive spouse then. But I made it work and made good money and took him to Paris! He is much more behind me now than I ever thought he would be. I just want you to know you can do it. Our situation last year was very much like yours.
    Good luck with the phone time. I have not made my calls yet this week either so that will be my afternoon tomorrow!
     
    Jun 2, 2009
    #22
  23. ChefKelebel

    ChefKelebel Member

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    I totally agree with Jeanine's post about not venting to hubby. My "WonderHubby" is super supportive in all areas, but he just doesn't get it and still looks at this as a hobby, easy to let go of.

    I'm like most of us here, SAHM with a couple of younger kids that seem to have an internal mechanism that sets off their vocal cords as soon as I get on the phone (not kidding, every time:)

    Anyway, thanks for the vent. Don't feel bad, you just vented lots of feelings we all have/or had.

    What works for me: Setting up a routine and sticking to it. The kids eventually get used to it and I've learned to sometimes just let it go. Even if it means stopping exactly in the middle of a task (phone call, email, etc.) to hang with my kids. I'm doing this to be a more happy Mom and wife. If my hubby, me and my kids aren't happy because I'm doing this, then it's not worth it. Happy wife, Happy life...EXACTLY!!!
     
    Jun 3, 2009
    #23
  24. jenniferm

    jenniferm Member Gold Member

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    Amanda,
    As I was reading your "vent" I swear I was reading the story of my life. I have a 5 year old, 3 year old, and 2 year old. My husband works 12 hours shifts and right now is on nights so I am with the kids 24/7...except when I manage to get a show in. On my husbands day off he has work around the house to do. I so understand where your are at on this. Thanks for venting and thanks to those who have given advice...it really helps to know I am not alone in my problems

    Jennifer
     
    Jun 3, 2009
    #24
  25. zmom58

    zmom58 Member

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    When I had to be on the phone, I gave my kids a roll of scotch tape, they just couldn't put it on their face or hair and not on each other. It sounds funny, but it worked, even if only for five minutes. I did this even before PC days. Find something for them to do that they can only do when you are on the phone, this might work when the baby is napping. Be sure to get a daytime phone number from your hosts and guests (and an evening number) and make sure it is okay to call them at that number. Hang in there, when I started PC my 6 kids were 17 down to 7, so no babies, but a lot of activities to keep us all busy.
    Best wishes to you, you can do this.
    Deb
     
    Jun 3, 2009
    #25
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