The Most Critical Skill Set for Making Cold Calls is . . .

In my previous blog post, I discussed the three things you MUST do when making cold calls.

Recently, I received a recruiting call from a consultant who opened his call in the following manner (identity has been changed to maintain his confidentiality).

“Terry, my name is Charlie Brown, and I recruit senior-level managers for the staffing industry.  Would you be interested in hearing about an exceptional opportunity that would allow you to leverage your career while dramatically increasing your income level?”

The first thought that crossed my mind was, “Why is he calling me?”  When I asked him this question, he stated the following:

“Because several of your peers told me that you have the exceptional skills and experience my client is seeking.”

After several follow-up questions on my part, Charlie had to admit that he knew virtually nothing about me and that he was recruiting on a Branch Manager’s position for a staffing firm that planned to open an office in the Twin Cities area.

In fact, he had not discussed me with my peers (whoever he thought they might be), and he did not know that I was the owner of my business.

If Charlie’s call was indicative of his usual approach, unless he receives proper skills development training, I suspect he will not enjoy long-term success in our business.  Without my prompting, he would not have been able to engage me in a two-way dialogue.

Just as significantly, Charlie was not able to credibly answer the basic question, “Why are you calling me?”  Unfortunately, there are many practitioners, both rookie and experienced, who lack the same skill sets.

Their words may be different, but their results are the same.

REMEMBER:

The most critical skill set to develop is not getting people to listen to you.  Rather, it’s the skill of getting them to talk with you, to open up, and to willingly share the specifics of their individual situations.

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Terry Petra is one of the recruiting industry’s leading trainers and business consultants.  A Certified Personnel Consultant since 1975 and a Certified International Personnel Consultant since 1989, Petra has extensive experience as a producer, manager, and trainer in all areas of professional search, including retainer, contingency, and contract, as well as clerical/office support and temporary.  For more information about his services, visit his website or call 651.738.8561.