Happy Monday…. No, I am not talking about getting engaged to your hostess. I’m talking about getting your hostess engaged in the planning process when they book a party – online, on Facebook or a home party.
I have heard it a million times from team members and other consultants, “How do I get my hostess to be involved?”; “How come one is active and the other is a flop?”. The truth is, each hostess is different and each one will react to things in a different manner. The trick is to have a conversation with your hostess when you are planning the party. I know we all “talk” to our hostesses BUT do we ask questions to help us figure out what is best for them. Are we asking questions but then just going about our usual way of doing things? SMACK! Sometimes the truth hurts.
I have made the same mistakes and sometimes fall back into the old bad habits. I can usually tell the difference in the parties when I ASK questions and LISTEN for the answers then those where I just move along doing the same old, same old.
The goal of the initial conversation is to plan the party with your hostess. If you ASK these questions and focus on her answers, you will see an amazing different.
- What does she want to happen at the party?
- What does she want to earn?
- Who does she want to invite?
- What does she expect of me?
- What do I expect of her?
This conversation should happen early in the planning stage, so everyone is on the same page. I love this sample script from Team Connections BUT be sure to make it sound like you. It may take some practice till you find the format which works for you…
“Susie, this is Mary from XYZ Company. I am so excited about our party on the 29th. I am calling today to spend about 10 to 15 minutes planning our party. Did I call you at a bad time?” (I prefer this instead of “is now a good time to talk” because it is never a good time to talk for busy women. When we ask if I called you at a bad time, you may tell me what you are doing but agree to talk for a few minutes).
“Susie, I want this party to be a great night for you and your friends. What would make it one?”
LISTEN for her answer – not what you are going to respond with.
“Super, to create a night for you, we are a team so let’s work together to make sure there are people attending and everyone has a great time.”
“Is there anything specific you would like to earn as a result of hosting a party?”
Connect this to the number of people and orders required!
“Let’s talk about the invitations. How do you and your friends typically communicate? I still love paper invites and am happy to send them for you. Even if you connect via text or FB, a paper invite lives on the frig and is a great reminder!!”
Even when hosting a Facebook party, I do paper invites. Many people do not see the invites on Facebook so paper invites gives them a heads up. At the same time, if they can’t make the party, they have all of the information they need to place an order.
“Having 12 to 15 people in the room is a comfortable and fun number. There will be great energy and no one will feel pressured to buy. To make that happen we will need 20 yeses. Something always happens at the last minute for a few people. It usually takes 30 to 40 invitations to end up with 12 to 15 attending. How does that sound to you?”
LISTEN to her response. This number could sound overwhelming to her especially for a home party. It is also to reassure her if there are NOT 12 – 15 people attending, it is still okay to have the party. Overcome her fears of failing with reassurance of other ways to gather orders to reach her goal.
“It’s my job to help you create the list, so let’s work on it together.”
MAKE suggestions on who she could reach out to. I also do a VIP invite to at least 5 people who are a “must” be at the party. These people are sent an incentive along with a catalog to encourage them to help the hostess collect orders.
“I will continue to stay in touch.” (Tell her exactly how often and by what means. Also, repeat any other promises you have made, like sending out invitations.)
“I will be expecting your list on Friday.” (Repeat any other expectations of her.)
“We’re a team, so be sure to call on me if there is anything you need or I can do to make your party a success.”
“Thank you, I’m looking forward to meeting your friends and having a great night.”
Remember hostess engagement is a result of hostess coaching. It’s all about creating a relationship and forming a partnership!
Share your best tips with us…
Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!