21 reasons your Admissions Representatives aren’t motivated

I have been in the higher education sector for the last fifteen years of my career.  Primarily working with admissions managers and admissions representatives. I have worked in the for-profit sector, the non-profit private sector, and even the public sector.

As a manager myself for many years, and as a consultant for just as many, I have found the following 21 ideas, things, excuses, or whatever you want to call them.  To be true in every one of the higher education groups I have worked with.

I am not only blaming the admissions representatives or the schools themselves for this lack of motivation.  They are all in it together. From the top down, everybody has to be held accountable and understand the mission.  And no matter what your Tax status says you are.  For-Profit, Non-Profit, or Public, no institution would exist if they didn’t have students paying tuition.

Ultimately, this responsibility falls on the admissions representatives and the admissions managers. They are both equally responsible for the livelihood of the school.

Here are 21 things that could help you diagnose the problem you might have on your team right now.  I am not going to solve your problem in this blog post.  However, the first step to all change is realizing that you need to make a change.

After you read the post, if you feel like your team needs some additional skills please reach out to me.  I have perfected a training system for Admissions Teams.  We call our product the Admissions Advantage.

Do you want an advantage for your team and your school?  If so, let’s have a conversation.  If not, use this information and make the necessary changes.  It is up to you.

21.  They don’t like their job

  • I don’t know why they don’t like their job.  It could be a variety of different reasons.  They don’t believe in what they do, or they don’t believe in the leadership.  You need to find out why and see if this can change.  If not, you know what needs to be done.

20. They don’t see a career path for growth.

  • On the first day of the job everybody wants to know two things.  After they learn how much they are getting paid.  What is it that I am responsible for?  And where do I fit in here?  They want to see where they are now and where they could be in the future. Show them.

19.  They don’t know the bigger picture.

  • Show them the marketing budget, show them the instructional budget, show them everything.  And then show them how the revenue they generate from the students they enroll make the budget work.

18. You have some toxic people on the team bringing everyone else down. 

  • Who are the negative people.  All teams have them.  You have to get rid of them ASAP. Why haven’t you? Quit waiting.

17. They don’t get respect from other departments 

  • Admissions representatives are going to push other people to do things they don’t want to do. They should do it respectively, but at the same time, they need to have the respect across the board from the other departments.  Everybody in the institution needs to know that without students none of them will exist. Period.

16. They are too focused on their next steps instead of the current step they are on. 

  • If we aren’t happy in what we are doing we are going to be looking for what the next step is. In many colleges and schools this is usually being done on the schools dime.  With additional educational benefits.  I am a fan of this, but admissions representatives must be doing their full-time job first.

15. They have too much free time. 

  • Free time is not good for any of us.  Especially an admissions representative. If your people are not seeing enough prospective students then you have to figure out a way to get everyone busier.  Too much free time will make them lazy and they will get in trouble.

14. They don’t know the consequences of missing budget or goals 

  • When is the last time you wrote someone up or let someone go because of a lack of performance.  I understand that everybody got a little scared under the previous administration and the rules. However, if you don’t have consequences for not doing your job, then mediocrity will creep in and kill your school.

13. They don’t know what excellence looks like 

  • I have seen it a hundred times.  You have one person that is killing it.  And that becomes the standard.  What if their standard is not that high though?  Then everybody else is trying to live up to a low standard.  Get some A players in and set some new standards.

12. They don’t know what it means to own something 

  • If your staff is younger, the chances are they haven’t lived long enough to truly own something. You must teach them how to own their career and their goals on the job.  This will keep them motivated to performing.

11. They are short timers

  • You have some people who just took this job because it is the one they were offered.  And you were sold in the interview. If this is the case get them out and make them really short timers.

10. Top leadership doesn’t remind them of how important they are.

  • A supervisor must be setting the standard every single day and showing the team appreciation.  However, the top leadership must do it often as well. It just means more when they hear it from the top leadership.

9. Direct supervisors are uninspiring.

  • If you are a manager and are reading this.  I am sorry.  It has just been my experience.  The question I have for you.  Are you motivated?  If not.  Why not?  What can you do to get excited again?

8. They don’t know what accountability is.

  • Accountability is a bad word.  Everybody says they like it until they get it.  But without it, there is no motivation to do better.  You must have systems in place that not only inspire the team to perform better, but you also have to have systems in place that show them when they don’t and what happens if they continue to not perform well.

7. They are too close for their own good. 

  • If your institution has hired a lot of graduates of your school then you know what I mean here.  They are either selling the schools features too hard and their experiences, or they talk to candidly about all of the problems with the school.  Either way, you have to teach them some skills to eliminate some of these tendencies.

6. They know they aren’t very good and they are being allowed to stay. 

  • Most people know when they aren’t performing very well.  And if they are being allowed to do it, they will just ride it out as long as they can.  Why not.  Especially if this is your first position in your career.  Management must figure this out immediately and make the changes.

5. They aren’t bought in. 

  • Again this is a management problem.  If you have some people on the team they aren’t bought in, you must figure out why.  And it all starts with creating a plan for their career and their growth while there.  Everybody needs to see how they can grow in their career and make more money ultimately. When you do this.  They will buy in to this path and their current position.

4. They lack the communication skills required. 

  • If you suck at communication, which unfortunately is not a skill that is learned the way it used to be. Then you aren’t going to be able to communicate to people internally or to your prospective students in a way that encourages them and motivates them to want to attend school.

3. They haven’t learned any people skills. 

  • Similar to communication.  People skills aren’t being taught the way they used to be.  The bottom line is that we have to teach people what basic people skills are, and then build upon that and teach them what it means to influence other people.

2. They are scared to be assertive. 

  • If you have grown up being passive and have never been taught what it means to take initiave and make things happen, then you wont know how to do it. You have to show them how.

1. They don’t have the self-confidence. 

  • Some people think that the younger generation has too much self-confidence when they get on the job. However, they don’t have the self-confidence to do what it takes to get people to walk through the doors to your institution.  This requires the confidence to say hard things and be assertive and direct with parents and their peers. This again, is not something that is being taught, but it can be taught.

Wherever you are reading this blog, I would love to get your feedback and thoughts. Do you agree? Disagree?  What else would you add?

Here is the one thing that I want to share.  All of the ideas in this article can be trained.  You can increase a persons self-confidence by increasing their skills.  If you aren’t investing in your admissions representatives development.  And I don’t mean formal education.  I mean real skill development on how to communicate to people to take action, phone skills to get people to call you back, and all the skills required to perform at their job better. Reach out to me and let’s have a conversation and see if the Admissions Advantage could help your institution.

bwillett555@gmail.com

To your success and your future.

 

Why closing these Gap’s are vital to your life and success.

If you had to sum up life it could really be summed up in one sentence.

You spend most of your life trying to close the GAPs in the most important areas of your life.

The GAP between what you might be asking.  The GAP between you and everything you want out of your life and want in your life.

So what is a GAP?  Lets get a definition for this first.

A GAP is described as a break in continuity.  I also like the definition of an, unfilled space or interval.

So where are some GAPS in your life?

Here is a quick list of GAPS that may or may not pertain to you?  This list is by no means final and is up to each person to create their own.

A Success GAP:  The GAP between the expectations you have of yourself and where you currently are today.

The Health GAP: The GAP between your current health situation and the health situation you would like to have.

The Relationship Gap:  This could be a lot of different relationships in your life such as: with your wife, your boss, your children, your parents, your neighbor, etc.  The GAP between where your relationship is today and where you would like that relationship to be.

The Confidence GAP:  Where you stand today with your confidence in your own abilities and skills in an area of importance to you versus you pursuing that of which eludes you.

The Communication GAP: Most likely this GAP exists in a variety of different ways in your life. It could be the lack of communication from your boss, the lack of communication you and your spouse may have, and may more areas of your life that are important.

The Income GAP:  This is the GAP in between your current financial status and the status you want to have.

So how do we close the GAP?  That is really all we can seek to do.

Like everything in life.  The first thing you have to do is become aware that it exists.  In this case, you have a GAP in one of the above described areas, or another area in your life. Once you identify the GAP.  Then you can seek the information to help you close the GAP.

Lets use the Health GAP as an example.  What is the GAP? What is the current situation for you and secondly, what is the desired situation you want.

I’ll use myself as an example.  I have a GAP in between where I am today and where I would like to be ten months from now at age 40.  At age 40, I seek to be in the best shape of my life.  Which would require me to be at 195, my blood pressure being at 120/75, my BMI at 15-20, and have all of the major health tests conducted and show that I am a healthy forty year old man.  I would even love it if they said I was better than average.  I don’t want to be just average.

So where is the GAP?  I currently weight about 200 or so.  My BMI is closer to 24, my blood pressure is usually around the 120/80-83 mark.  And I haven’t had all of the major tests a forty-year old should get yet.  Although I know the surface level GAP’s of where I am and where I want to be, I have to go to the doctor to get all of the necessary facts to totally see the entire picture.

Once the GAP is identified, I can now learn and create an action plan to close the GAP.

For you to close any GAP in your life, you first have to go through the process of determining that a GAP exists.  The GAP is the space between where you are and where you want to be.

After the you identify the GAP, the big question becomes how bad do you want to close the GAP?  What is the intensity of your desire to make this GAP smaller and smaller.

This GAP will exist as long as you want it to exist.

Now here is the GAP Closer.  Now that you have identified the GAP, and your desire to close the GAP is strong. What do you do?

You go and get the knowledge and education you are missing to close the GAP.  Now the chances are you may already have some of the knowledge and education, but you just aren’t applying it.  That is another blog for another day. But for you to close the GAP in anything you have to apply the necessary knowledge and education you already know, or go out and find the right information and knowledge and then apply it.

This is the only way to close the GAP.  Once you start this process, you can speed the process up, or you can take forever to close the GAP.  It is up to you.

The key to closing a GAP in any area of you life, is identifying you have a GAP.  Once you do this, you then have to identify your motive and desire to close this GAP. After that, you either must apply what you already know, or go out and get the information so you can apply it to closing the GAP.

Life is really a big GAP that you are costly managing and seeking to close.  If you don’t have any GAP’s in your life, then my guess is you don’t have any goals or dreams, which is probably the reason you don’t have any GAPs.

If you want to start closing some GAPS in your life, then reach out to me.  I coach leaders, sales people, and individuals who want to close the GAPs in their life.  I have found that without some help and accountability, closing GAP’s can be very difficult.  Everybody needs someone to push them to accomplish the things in their life that require them to change something in their life.

How big are the GAPs in your life?  How bad do you want close them?  The only way to closing the GAP is getting the knowledge and education you are missing, and then having someone hold you accountable to applying it.

To your success and you future.

 

 

For 35 years, all of my decisions came down to these two words. Not now!

The great Napoleon Hill said: “Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.” 

The first question you have to ask yourself is:

Do you believe this statement/quote is true?  If you do or you don’t I would encourage you to continue reading.

Through out my life.  I have had to decide to do one thing or the other.  All decisions were an “either”, “or”.

Here are a few of my examples:

  • I had to decide that if I wanted to buy a house.  Than I would have to get rid of my car payment.
  • I had to decide if I wanted to put in more hours at work, than I wouldn’t workout as regular.
  • Growing up, my parents would tell me that if I wanted these really expensive shoes than I couldn’t get as many clothes.  Because there was only so much money.
  • I had to decide instead of getting the new car with all of the bells and whistles, I would have to just get the older version or the newer one with less bells and whistles.
  • I had to decide if I wanted to go away for the weekend, than I would have to give up eating out dinner for several months in advance.
  • I had to decide if I wanted to take a vacation, than I would set aside a certain amount of money for a period of time, before taking that vacation.
  • I had to decide while on the vacation, between eating out for dinner or cooking something back in the hotel room.

I could come up with numerous examples of where my decisions throughout my life came down to these two words “either”, “or”.  For 35 plus years I had to live with these decisions.

It wasn’t until I made a decision, and I am recommitting to this decision right now.  That I no longer want to make “either” “or” decisions.  I instead want to make decisions on “all” or “everything”.

I want the car that I want, not the one that I can get. I want the vacation that I want.  Not the one I can get. I want the, “you name it that I want, not the one that I can get.”

I no longer want to say, I can “either do this”, “or do that”.  I want it all and I want everything that I decide that I want.

When you spend your entire life making decisions this way, it is hard to change your mentality and your decision making overnight.  But if you commit to seeking abundance in your life and change your thinking, you can change your life.

I am coaching hundreds of people right now in the area of changing their approach in how they do everything in their life and in their business. If you think this is something you want to do lets connect and see how my program might be able to help you. email me at bwillett555@gmail.com

Remember, you are capable of accomplishing anything you decide to commit to. You just have to make a decision and commit.

To your success and your future.

Three truths you need, but you don’t want…

On a daily basis it is my job to give others, feedback in areas of their life and their career.  Most of the feedback I provide is not harsh, but it is usually met with some resistance.  Now I know it is important to give the good feedback with the bad. However, most leaders/coaches are either good at one or the other.  Most leaders are either good at telling people how great they are.  Which means the person thinks they are good at everything.  Or you have leaders that all they do is point out the faults or shortcomings of the people they lead.  There has to be a balance.  You have to do both.

In my business, I spend most of my time giving truthful feedback in these three areas.

  1. You are capable of more: I understand you are busy.  You have a lot to do.  Everyone does.  The question I have for you though is,  “Are you efficient with what you have to do?” And secondly, how much of what you are doing, should you actually be doing. I don’t know you or your business.  However, if I were to guess, the chances are you, especially if you are a leader in an organization, are currently doing a task, or job, that you should have someone else doing.   Thats first.  Look at all the things you are doing and ask yourself.  Is this what I get paid to do?  Or am I focusing on things that I should be delegating to others?

    The second reason you are capable of more. You are not maximizing your full potential. Sorry, you are not.  Humans are the only species on earth that can decide to slow up and coast.  The chances are you are doing the same job you have always done. Maybe in a bigger company with different challenges, but it is the same thing you have always done.  It is not stretching you and getting you outside your comfort zone causing you to develop new skills. The goal here is to develop new skills.

    Most of us get to a satisfactory and acceptable level of performance in whatever it is we do, and we just stay there.  But you don’t have to.  You can become more than you are today by learning and doing more than you are currently doing. You have the capacity.

  2. You are not as good as you think you are: The chances are you have never been given the feedback you need to get you to change who you are.  Like I mentioned earlier, most leaders don’t give the critical feedback that is necessary to get you to grow.  So, instead you go through your daily life in business and even personally, thinking you are great at…. whatever it is. And the reality is, you are not that great.  I am sure you are a great person, all of us are, or at least we want to be.  We just aren’t aware of our own shortcomings until someone points them out.
  3. You can change:  As you already know some people just aren’t willing to change.  They honestly believe that they are either on the right path for success and they can continue down this path.  Or they just don’t see the need to change.  Here are the four questions I ask to determine if a person can change.  If they can answer yes to the first two questions, then there is hope.  If they don’t answer yes, it is going to be a struggle.

    Need:  Does the person see a need or have a need to make changes?
    Want: Do they want to make a change?
    Can: Do they believe they can change?
    Will: Will they do what is necessary to make changes?

The chances are if you have made it to the bottom here and are still reading this blog.  It tells me that you realize that you are capable of so much more.  You agree that you aren’t as good as you can be. And you know you can change and are willing to do whatever it takes to make a change.

Now the question is, “What are you going to do about it?”  Dale Carnegie Training is the original Thought Leader in the Training and Development space.  For over 104 years, we have focused on changing behaviors that are holding people back from having more self-confidence in themselves. Changing behaviors to enhance their ability to have stronger and deeper relationships with people. We have also equipped people with the processes to communicate more effectively that has allowed them to have great impact and influence with everyone around them.

If you have a need or see a need in any of the above three areas and know that right now is the time for you to make a change. Connect with me by responding to this post wherever you read it.  Or reach out to me directly at brian.willett@dalecarnegie.com

To your success and your future.

Work, Play, and Deliberate Practice

I have learned, in some cases the hard way, that you can’t see the entire field when you are playing the game. Why do you think coaches are so vital for success in any activity. They help you see the things you can’t. A good coach helps you see the rest of the field, the court, or whatever it is.  They can bring an objective viewpoint to the situation that you can’t see because you are too close or you can’t see because you are engaged in the activity at that time.

I was introduced to the 10,000 hour rule by Malcolm Gladwell in his book titled “Outliers” (The story of success).  In his book Gladwell talks about Anders Ericsson’s extensive research on how to become an elite performer in anything you must devote at least 10,000 hours to this venture.  After reading this years ago, and being reintroduced to it here recently, I have read the research conducted by Ericsson and his team that validates or substantiates the 10,000 hour rule.  The data is pretty convincing and based on the research I can conclude through my own experiences that this 10,000 hour rule is pretty close to being exact.

When involving yourself in any activity you have three options.  You can work at it, play, or have deliberate practice towards tis activity.

Working. When you are working at something, you are working and motivated by some kind of extrinsic motivators.  Such as money, fame, accolades, recognition, winning, etc.  Which means you don’t have time to actually think and fix any mistakes you make while working on this activity.  For example: If I get paid to deliver a speech.  I am not practicing and fixing words, I am just delivering.  I can’t fix or rethink any of what I want to, regardless if I want to or not. Another example:  A baseball player.  They get anywhere from 3-7 at bats per game.  When they are at bat they are just playing, they are not working to get better.  Work alone will not allow you to become elite at any activity, unless you do a lot, and you will not be very good for most of that time.  To be great you must have both work and deliberate practice to be truly elite.

Playing.  When you are engaged in activity for play, you are not working to get any better or improve techniques, you are just playing for the fun of it.  This is fine and is required, but there is only one way to get better and improve your performance.

Deliberate practice.  This is when you deliberately practice and work on enhancing the skills and competencies you understand while pursuing areas of your skills for a desired activity that you are not very good at it.  Which means you are consciously practicing for improved performance.  A more comprehensive approach to deliberate practice is to have a coach, mentor, teacher, etc. that actually helps you to work in each of the areas that make up the activity in which you are engaged. This is when and only when you can improve performance.

After much research on this topic I am convinced that most people (I see it daily) prefer and spend most of their time and approach in life, in the area of work when it comes to an activity.  Which means they are practicing while they are working, they don’t do anything outside of that to improve performance.  They think or believe that their performance will improve by the fact that they are practicing while they are working. I guess it kind of reminds me of “practice what you preach” which means don’t say something that you don’t do yourself.

I personally see this in leadership quite often.  They say “I am a leader” I inspire others I empower others, I recognize others, so I must be a great leader.  This is one piece of the equation of good leadership, but the other piece of leadership is coaching for improved performance and the only way to increase a person’s performance is by helping them enhance their own skills on the job, as well as in their life. Someone once said that leaders help a person see something in themselves that they don’t or can’t see.  That goes back to coaching, doesn’t it?  We can’t fix what we can’t see.  Leaders must be willing to push themselves in their activities to become better.  They must have a coach. They can’t push others to get better, when they are not doing it themselves.

Who is coaching you to improve your performance?  Who is helping you see the entire field?  The big question is this, ARE you coachable?  Or do you already know it all? That is the problem I see with most people.  They already know it all! How can you help me?  When you think you know it all, you have failed.

I am currently coaching clients in the areas of goal setting, sales training, leadership, and career progression. If you would like access to some of the free resources I have please email me directly at bwillett555@gmail.com

Brian Willett

Are you a COACH?

This morning I spent some time reflecting on some of the books I have read over the last couple of years.  I did this mainly because I have become a better note taker in the last six months and I wanted to be sure I wrote down the material from some of the great books I have read. Secondly I started this blog seven months ago and I want to share the information.

I was having a conversation yesterday with a really good friend of mine.  I was humbled when he asked me to be his personal coach.  The reason I was humbled, is because I get as much from them as they get from me.  We really do make each other better.  Our conversations and meetings haven’t been well scheduled or planned, but we made an agreement to make sure we plan some regular meetings. We get so much from each other, we need to spend more time talking to each other.  Planning well means we are intentional about our growth and development.  We coach each other.

I pulled out one of my books from one of my favorite authors and thought leaders.  Mr. John C. Maxwell.   His book titled the 15 Laws of Invaluable Growth is probably one of the best play books on personal development that I have read.  In one of the chapters he shares some insights on coaches.

What is a coach?  The word coach is actually derived from the horse-drawn coaches that were developed in the town of Kocs during the fifteenth century.  The vehicles were created to transport Royalty, but they also carried valuables, mail, and eventually common folks.  Kevin Hall wrote in his book Aspire, a “coach” is something or someone, who carries a valued person from where they are to where they want to be. So if you have a coach you would end up at your desired destination.  Isn’t this what a coach does?

Who is a coach?  We can all be coaches.  If you are a parent, a sibling, a manager, a leader, a CEO, a friend, a colleague, a subordinate, a middle manager, a trainer, etc.  We can all be coaches.  You don’t need a title in a company to be a coach.  You can coach from where ever.  It is all about making a decision to do the things below and do it with grace and a good heart for the right reasons.

  • C  are for the People the Coach
  • O  bserve their Attitudes, Behavior, and Performance
  • A  lign Them with their strengths for Peak Performance
  • C  ommunicate and Give Feedback about their Performance
  • H  elp them to improve their lives and their performance

I think the acronym above explains exactly what a coach is.  So for my coaches out there, are you doing those things? I would love to hear any feedback that you may have on this subject.

Brian Willett