COLD CALLING BUSINESSES

Posted by RAMA MELOW | 2:39 AM | | 0 comments »

You've read all about it: Internet recruitment, networking, referrals, and more! But
often, these methods take up too much time and waiting. Now, my next suggestion is
possibly the most powerful, yet difficult strategy to get your foot in the career door of your
choice - cold calling, the art of uninvited job-hunting.
Before you dismiss this as "simply beneath me", consider the odds that four-fifths of
the job market is "closed", meaning you won't find out about available openings until they
come up for advertisement.



The hiring cycle is a long and arduous one. It begins with the
internal identification of a position opening by a manager or supervisor. The lead-time to
process this vacancy up until its appearance in an advertisement can often take from six to
nine months. Hiring is expensive. By cold calling, you're saving the company time, money
and resources by placing yourself on a platter for them to consider even before any
advertisement has been launched. And even if there are no immediate vacancies available,
you gain by getting a vital contact name and inside company information, such as particular
application periods or how exactly the company recruits. In the long run, should you have
made an impression, your name and Resume may be stored for future openings before they
even go "open".
Just as all responsible entities must do, let me warn you of the pitfalls of this strategy.
"Cold-calling", or calling employers directly, is often a very difficult task for most people
unless you're born with a sales talent and a "thick skin". Cold calling means making contact
with people whom you have not had any previous contact and selling yourself in such a way
that you set up an interview for yourself or convince them to keep you at the top of their
minds should a position come up in future. Some people say it's like a radio ad: Concise, to
the point, focused at meeting the employer's needs, charismatic and informative about
yourself. The key to cold calling is to be prepared for anything. At any point in the process,
you could find yourself dealing directly with the person who is responsible for hiring. You
must always be ready to sell yourself and your skills.
So Where Do I Start?
There are several parts of the cold-calling process. Each part has some similarities to
what professional telemarketers do when preparing to market their product:
1. Craft yourself a list of choice employers.
The first step in this process is compiling at list of all companies that you would be
interested to work with. The more, the merrier; the longer the list, the better your odds
at success. You can source for this list via your personal network, the yellow pages,
corporate websites, business listings from industry publications and even your local
Chamber of Commerce directory. You could create this list of companies by focusing
on a specific geographic area, a particular industry, corporate rankings, or the like. Do
some research into the career opportunities in your field of profession with each
company as far as possible before progressing further. This ensures that you don't
waste your time with organizations that won't be able to match your career goals.
Once they pass this test, narrow your search to an address, contact name and
number/email of the hiring manager or supervisor in the department of your choice. If
these are not indicated on directories or websites, make a call to the general line and
ask for this contact from the receptionist so that you get direct connection with the
person responsible for hiring. (Often, this means bypassing Human Resources and
going directly to the source of the vacancy.)
2. Get your pitch down pat.
Your pitch is your personal introduction. To ensure you're not tongue-tied at the
crucial point of a telephone conversation, prepare a short script to guide you on your
self-introduction to the prospective employer. A simple outline includes an
introduction, an explanation of your purpose, summarizing three top skills you
possess pertinent to the type of job you are inquiring about, finding about immediate
or potential vacancies, asking if you might send them a copy of your Resume or
arrange an interview date. A pitch allows you to relax and focus on what you need to
say and how to say it prior to calling an employer. Be sure to relate your previous
professional experience with what this new company needs. You may have more than
one pitch that you refer to depending on the type of job that you are applying for.
3. Practice makes perfect.
Telephone etiquette is extremely important in cold calling as this is your first point of
contact with the prospective employer. So don't get sloppy! Here are some tips to help
you get it right:
o Practice your script either with a friend or another job seeker, making him/her
work through different scenarios as the secretary or employer;
o Tape record yourself to ensure you come off as calm, clear and confident;
o Identify yourself. Don't assume the person you are calling will recognize your
voice or that the secretary has passed on your name. If you were referred by
someone else, mention their name;
o Talk to the right person (the hiring authority) at the right time. Be aware that
businesses have busy or inconvenient times when they would not appreciate a
phone call: for example, 12:00 noon just before lunch or at the end of the
month for accounting firms;
o Keep control of the conversation. If the person you want is not in, never leave
a number and passively wait for your call to be returned. Inquire about another
time to call and promise to call again later;
o Put on your good phone voice. Don't mumble or shout. Talk at a moderate
pace. Be friendly and precise;
o Get down to business. People don't have time for small talk, so get to the point
briefly;
o In your anxiety to be heard, don't forget to listen - it's a two-way thing.
Remember, you need to motivate your listener to pave the way for you, so
listen when they are speaking. Take notes if that will help you! If you can't
provide answers to questions asked spontaneously, tell them you'll get the
answers and call them back when you say you will;
o Ask for a meeting (interview) at a definite time, yet do it as "lightly" as
possible. Give them alternative options, for example: "Would Wednesday
morning or Thursday afternoon be more suitable for you, Mr. _______?" If
the employer informs you that there are no positions available, ask for an
informational meeting to find out more about the company. That will help you
get to know more people within the company and make connections for future
use.
o Get it down on paper. Write brief notes while on the phone to record what was
discussed and agreed upon between you and the contact and when it took
place. Memory is a fleeting thing. Don't rely solely on your memory. Transfer
this to your job tracking sheet so that you are always on the right page should
a contact call back.
4. Prep your cold call toolkit.
Before you pick up the telephone, make sure you have the following in hand: your
pitch, company research notes, a copy of your relevant Resume, a calendar, pen and
paper, your "contact tracking" sheet formatted for notes on the date, time, person,
company, address, telephone, reason for calling, follow-up date, interview date/time,
and comments.
5. Practice getting past gatekeepers.
One of the hardest parts of the process is reaching the person who does the hiring.
Secretaries or operators are there to screen calls for busy individuals. So, a few
methods are beneficial in bypassing these gatekeepers. One of them is to take
advantage of automated "dial the extension of the person you want" features. If you
do not know what it is, connect at random and courteously ask if they can connect
you to the person you're after. It may take several calls before you compile enough
information to find the right person. Remember, this won't work unless you're
pleasant and nice to the other person, who may be busy too. So use this technique
carefully.
6. How to break the ice
Be genuine. Try to avoid reading a script like most telemarketing people do, and open
the conversation with intelligent points. Knowledge of company projects underway
and intended areas of expansion and development is crucial to breaking the ice with
an employer. For example: "I remember reading recently that the company was
bringing out a new product to the market. I must say, after reading the specifications
on this product (try naming the product if you know what it’s called) I am really
looking forward to its launch. I've worked in the field of marketing in this industry
and I know the potential of this product. I want to be a part of the team to work on
this product and I know that I can contribute a great deal of expertise towards the
marketing campaign. Is your company looking at expanding its Product Marketing
team for this upcoming launch?"
7. When the going gets tough...
“Why should we hire you?" "How will your experience help my team?" "What proof
can you give me that you can generate revenue for this company?" Reading off a
Resume won't help you answer these tough questions. You have to anticipate them
and know how to respond in a relevant manner.
8. Don't let it get you down.
Be prepared for negative responses but don't let "No" be the end of your conversation
if you believe that you have a future with this company. Never argue. Practice
sidestepping objections by presenting alternative ways to fill a need with your skills.
By preparing for common objections, you stand a better chance of swaying negative
attitudes to place your candidacy in a better light. Should the end of the discussion be
a dead end despite your efforts, use this experience to prepare for your next cold call.
9. When to hang up.
Be true to your mission - an appointment for an interview or application details - and
don't hang up until you've either achieved the goal or exhausted all possibilities.
10. Wind down by following up.
If ever there was a time to be true to your word, this is it. Make sure you follow up
with that fax, or call, email that response, send in those documents or call back at a
better time. This is a representation of your respect for the company and contact, and
a measure of your professionalism.
Cold calling may not be the easiest route to a job, but it has proven to be effective and
advantageous to anyone on the trail to career nirvana. Whichever way the cold call turns out,
you can only win - a new job, new inside contacts, or valuable information on hiring cycles
or practices.
Through the means provided above, identify at least 25 companies you want to target.

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pliss dont spam