I have recently spent a day with a client focusing on new business calls. What struck me time and time again was the lack of planning before the recruiter picked up the phone to a potential client.

What then subsequently happened was that the recruiter was unprepared for the call, and because his only objective was to ‘get some jobs in’ this resulted in a failed call where the recruiter spoke too much, didn’t ask enough questions, sold his services too soon, didn’t listen to the client, didn’t know how to deal with the objections that he was receiving and was left stranded when he couldn’t then decide what he was trying to achieve or how to close the call.

If there is one tip that I post today it would be to plan what you want your final destination to be when making sales calls – Know what you are trying to achieve and decide on 3 key objectives for each call:

Ideal – What do I ideally want to get from this call? (Job Spec or Meeting for example)

Realistic – If I cannot achieve my ideal objective, what do I realistically think I can get? (commitment to call back when they are recruiting for example)

Bottom Line – If I can’t get either of my objectives, what is my bottom line and what am I not coming off the call without? (enough qualifying information to decide whether to call them back or not, when to to do this and what reason for calling I will have at that time)

By doing this you can then plan your call from the end objective all the way back up to what your opening statement is going to be (almost like a ‘Roadmap’ of the call).

That way you are (hopefully) more calm, confident and ready for whatever the call may bring. BTW – This goes for candidate calls too!

Remember the 5 P’s (perfect planning prevents poor performance)

Right I’m off for a drive ….. Now, where did I put that road map? Oh never mind, I’ll just ‘wing it!’