I was at a networking dinner this week and was privileged to hear Marcus Cauchi speak about one of the things that most of us dread - cold calling. Even if we don't cold call, for many of us picking up the phone to speak with someone is no longer a natural action. Given the choice between sending an email or talking to someone on the phone, we would opt to do the former.
Marcus began by saying that his approach to sales is not one that is comfortable for many and boy was he right - he is a big man with big ideas but he absolutely gets to the heart of what is going on; the tactics we use to avoid picking up the phone and the voice in our head that gives us nothing but negative messages about what we can expect when and if we do make that call.
The defining moment of Marcus' talk came when he played a video of his eleven year old daughter making a cold call:
It's perhaps no surprise that when the call came to an end there was absolute silence in the room.
I can't say what was happening for everyone else but the voice in my head was saying 'if an 11 year old girl can make such a call what's stopping you with all your experience and skills?'
Needless to say I have picked up the phone more this week than I have done for a very long time (probably before the advent of email) and do you know what - I have really enjoyed talking to real people even when they said they didn't have just 30 seconds to talk to me!