This article is not about qualification (BANT, ANUM, or the new “right” way of qualification), nor justifying your team is at X% on completion. This is about how to improve your completion rate; even if it is 1%.

If your completion rate as a team went up 1% overall for 12 months would that lead to more revenue?

In reference to completion rate, I’m not referring to completion rate on the contact level, I’m talking about on the original schedule date….let me clarify what this all means:

You schedule Jane Doe at Company ABC for Thursday at 2 EST.  Thursday comes around and she simply forgot about the meeting.  You then call and reschedule for Monday; and she is now swamped with internal “fires.” You call again, finalize a meeting for the next day, and she finally shows.

This would be a 33% completion rate; NOT 100%!

One would, and could argue what’s the big deal? – Ask your account executive team, they just wasted 30-60 minutes of their time and have now entered the third demo with a bad taste in their mouth.  The taste that is sensed from the prospect from minute one of that given demo.

What if the sales development manager had called after the first no-show; would it prevented missed demo #2.  Yes, and there’s a lot gained in between.

The Three Reasons Why

Production – If you are going to call behind your team’s no showed meetings, one of the reasons is to get them back on for the team.  This is not one of those moments in which you place blame and say, “The SDR should be responsible for getting them back on.”

Remember you are on a team. When Steph Curry misses a three-pointer does the team demand he gets his own rebound? No, Pachulia gets the rebound and either goes up with it, or dishes it back to him.  This is what you are essentially doing!

Only one call is necessary, the first reset attempt should be done by you. Your team missed the shot, and your job is to rebound it and simply dish back to the team, or put in the easy lay-up.  Think about it, you’re now the prospect, and you forgot about the meeting.  If a manager called behind the missed meeting and asked simply, “I know you spoke to (SDR NAME) about (insert value-add) and simply noticed we did not have a chance to connect yesterday, may I ask why?”

Wouldn’t you feel that the meeting is going to have a bit more value?

Plus, you were once a rock star SDR right? Are you now only the coach?

What better way to show your team you can still hack it as their fearless leader, than to get on the phone and defend your team’s honor by getting the meeting back. These particular reschedules have an extremely high likelihood of occurring, and going well.

Learning and Coaching Moments – I can tell you right now, from doing this first hand for years; prospects have hundreds of reasons on why they didn’t show up. Don’t get defensive, just listen.  You’ll hear a ton of good feedback from no-showed prospects. I’ve heard everything; from my team not being sympathetic enough to the reason in which they did not show, to the prospect not even knowing what the meeting is about (don’t judge).  Almost every reason is an opportunity to give feedback to your team and improve their completion rate for future meetings.

By following up what will you learn?

  • Are they asking all of the discovery questions to qualify?
  • The percentage of discovery questions that are being asked.
  • Are there answers to the discovery questions that would disqualify the prospect that the SDR is unaware of?
  • Are they representing the company and the brand in the right way?
  • Was the scheduling process a mess?
  • Did the calendar invite go-out (and first)? Did it end up in the spam folder?

The knowledge you gain is powerful, this is huge not only for future production, but the ongoing training and education that your SDR is yearning for.

Building Mutual Respect between AEs and SDRs – If you are unaware, time is money as an account executive.  That’s why we are aiming to better not only the initial meeting show-up rate, but the second one as well.  Your goal as a team should be to NEVER have to schedule the same contact a third time.  Minimally, for one missed meeting an AE is wasting 30 minutes (15 minutes prep + 15 minutes waiting on bridge).  Not only is the time lost, but they are now looking for a way to fill that time without a proper plan laid out.

After gathering intel on the prospect, you should have further information to enhance the next meeting.  Write a short note to the account executive on what you have learned, and the reason why they didn’t make the meeting the first time around. The account executive now is better prepared for the second meeting.  Also, the AE can be more sympathetic on why the prospect missed the meeting, rather than assuming the worst (thinking the prospect is an idiot).  Referencing back to the point above; you want the account executive to be his/her best for the call. The account executive team will appreciate that you value their time, and will appreciate the efforts you’re putting forth to giving them the best experience as possible with the SDR team.

This all takes less than 30 minutes a day.

Is there anything else you can do for 30 minutes a day that would more change the trajectory of SQLs than doing this?

-Brian Vital-