Be on Your Toes when Cold Calling

I’ve always believed as an organisation, as a profession we need to be able to differentiate ourselves. Individually and as an organisation.. It is a challenge in a market saturated with people peddling their wares.

So, how would you answer this question? Or do you think the question was out of line? I really don’t think there is a right answer here, and yes I know it’s comfortable here on the fence but…. As a Recruiter, or a sales professional of any kind, you just need to have an answer.

The answer is what will separate you from the pack. Here’s my thoughts though. It doesn’t need to be a perfect answer, just prove that you are thinking.

Here are a few tactics I feel this person could have employed as opposed to just hanging up. I’m intrigued to hear what everyone else would have to say.

I mean, it’s almost sales 101 to have an elevator pitch. “Explain to me what you do in 25 seconds or less” – We should all be able to do that right? I mean, you need to be able to articulate why the person on the other end of the phone should talk to you, if not, why pick up the phone in the first place? It a rule of cold calling right? We know not everyone loves the cold call, or even a sales call, but, the first rule of Sales club is have a pitch right?

Where the response for the above question seems hard is the “show me something he does that is different to everyone else” part. Sure that is a confronting question. If you answer it straight up, you need to have confidence in what you are selling and why, and more importantly, yourself. And, if you ARE doing something completely different to everyone else, now is your time to shine. Wow with the pitch, and drive it home. If there is a new bit of software, a different tactic, or just something unusual in your approach, a 100% money back guarantee with an unlimited guarantee period for example. But that’s easier said than done.

We all believe we have great people, that we have a great connection with our talent, love from our clients and a long history of happy, successful and repeat business to prove our case. We all have quality processes and possess great skills in picking the right people for your team. We network strongly, shun the use of job boards and will find you the passive candidates that only we have access to. I really don’t think too much would have wow’d this “client”.

However, the opportunity was missed here. This was the opportunity to be a Consultant, not purely a sales person. The caller apparently hung up, namely because he didn’t value his own value proposition. This was the opportunity to ask questions. The “client” was engaged and open for a dialog. So, my advice here, ASK some questions! You don’t know what this “client” would see as different to everyone else. You don’t know what this “client” sees as normal, run of the mill stuff, or what would be absolute ground breaking. I mean what you see as normal, could possibly blow his mind. Without the Consultation, the asking of questions, this Recruiters could have left some money on the table… (note, I do know this “client” and he probably wouldn’t have, but…) things were left unsaid that needed to be said or asked.

I’ve written about this before. Questions and listening are so invaluable to our profession, without those skills and aptitudes you’re just another person on the other end of the phone. You may as well be trying to sell phone books (remember them?) With questions you could find out if there are any gaps in their knowledge, to see where your services could add value and insert you into their process. From knowing the gaps, you can form a better, or more relevant discussion to engage the prospect with. Hanging up is just the easy way out, and making calls, just to add another stat to your call sheet. Who wants that?