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Questions Illuminate the Most Successful Strategies.

The best businesses, like the best collectors, know the right questions to ask to get their desired results.

The best collectors learn that question asking can be one of the most motivating and fulfilling methods of guiding a consumer to payment. Why? Because the consumer, through answering questions, identifies for themselves that payment is their best option. Whether known or not the Socratic Method of question asking is used by the best collectors. Often even knowing this, other collectors revert to what is comfortable and still ask questions like: How are you? And how’s your day going? Neither lead the conversation anywhere. And neither allow the collector to learn anything valuable, unless lucky, to guide the consumer quickly to payment.

Like collectors, sometimes businesses also struggle to ask the right questions or to even ask questions at all. The common culprits are often not having Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s), not digging into the KPI’s, or the inability to dig in. Some good starting questions are:

  1. What should our KPI’s be? – KPI’s are a valuable tool to assist businesses in understanding through data if their businesses are running how they should. Through KPI’s you should be able to assess the health of your business. They also enable the recognition of benefits or the lack thereof of new strategies or technology. Whether formal or not, all businesses have something they are watching to keep pulse of their business. If you are unsure what your KPI’s are or they don’t collectively show the health of your shop, it is time to ask what should our KPI’s be?

  2. What affects the KPI’s? – Drilling down past the KPI is where the work begins to push for improvement and insight. Often scores and analytics can help you to understand quickly what is going on. Ask questions to discover if your average balance has gone down or up, your paper is older or newer, payment size has shrunk or increased, your communication method isn’t working or is, your score average has come down or climbed, or accounts are lacking data needed for contact ability. There are myriads of things that can affect a collection business. Asking the right questions, rather than hoping things turn around the next month, leads the best in our industry to success.

  3. Do we have the necessary tools? – In a changing industry and as businesspeople it is our job to make sure we know what is going on in our business and continue to push the envelope. Make sure you ask the questions that allow you to have the right tools to understand your business and tweak KPI’s if necessary. Once the correct tools are in place, make sure you use them.

With the right tools and KPI’s, your business will be able to quickly ask and answer questions that can lead to improvements and the best strategies. Rather than wondering why collections are down or up and determining it’s the time of year or it was a weird month. Drill into the KPI asking deeper productive questions that lead past the collector “how are you,” and discover what can be done to maximize your profits.



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