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So after taking my first steps on ‘Gary Sargeant – Sales Superstar Returns’ it was becoming clear that this might be a bit harder than I first thought. The fact that my initial calling of 40 old candidates had only led to five actual conversations had led to a need for a rethink.
The fact is that a phone no longer really works as a phone. It’s really an answering machine or screening device. Just calling people expecting them to answer was obviously very last century. It’s clear that people screen their calls almost 100% of the time so how to progress from here and actually talk to some candidates?
After some consideration it seems there were two areas to focus on. When to call and what message to leave.
1. When do I call?
My calls had been mid morning, the most convenient time for me but realistically unlikely to the time of choice for the people I wanted to speak to. Thinking historically 6pm – 7pm had always been a good time. It showed you were willing to put yourself out and people who had just finished work are happier than when just starting. Let’s start there and see how it goes.
2. What message could I leave? (three options) 
Comprehensive – explaining myself, the company and the potential opportunity. Will people even listen to the end. Can lead people to think they already know everything so no need to call back.
Intriguing- a quick well thought out message, big salary, amazing job, brilliant opportunity. Think back to when we used to place job ad’s in the Telegraph and Evening Standard. Terminology’s so important. (If you replaced advertising sales with media sales you would receive double the applications for the same job. The same with if you used to say BMW rather than just company car). So a short interesting message with the theory being the person feels a need to call back to fill in the pieces. They are potentially interested but need to ring to ask what is the actual job, where is it and also who are you!
None – missed call. Could this work better than anything. Who was that?? Is this how the modern world works? Could even work but I don’t feel the best people act like this. At least I hope so.
So my choice, calling between 6pm – 7pm with an intriguing message. New staff training this week so Monday and Tuesday evening next week I’ll test my theories!