‘Doing it! – – The Artful Science of Effective Collections’

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Collecting is not rocket science, it is much more difficult. Water will boil at the same temperature every time, yet the boiling point of your customer, debtor or even your boss may be different one day to the another, sometimes minute by minute!

A basic concept of engineering is ‘Get Ready – Do – Put Away’.

There have been great advances in the get ready and put away fields, ranging from collection management systems that not only present information on a screen ‘JIT’ (just in time) once a customer answers the telephone or calls in, but uses scoring systems to better ensure you don’t waste time calling customers who are ‘most likely’, meaning they will pay without being called or won’t pay even if you do – so why bother?

Any organization, with the right investment of funds can make improvements to those areas.

However, the ‘Do’ has not changed one bit, even from before the invention of the telephone. It is still one person talking to another, trying to get them to do something they don’t want’ to do – and like it.

It doesn’t start with training. It is poor management to not provide the best and continued training possible. It borders on criminal to give training to the wrong people. Therefore, It starts with the hiring process – bringing people on board who have what it takes – the characteristics of successful collectors.

Then you train – but you cannot rest – any good sales manager or winning sports coach will tell you that training and motivation never stops. Never.

Every new collector needs to know – and the seasoned veterans reminded and reinforced about the two biggest mistakes made in collections, what the standards are for a professional, important phase of a collection call and key points to overcome excuses.

Can you get delinquent customers to pay? With the right balance of Art & Science, not only will they pay, they will want to pay so badly you just have to get out of the way!’

(The above is an outline of a keynote address I will give at The Recovery Forum, in Warsaw, Poland on March 26, 2015.)
Who better to sum it up:

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…from the diminutive philosopher Yoda, who would have been a great collection trainer and manager.