Cold Calling Is for Winners, Not Whiners

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It's about time I applied the wisdom of Peter F.
Drucker, management sage and my late professor, to the art of cold calling.
He said: "We don't succeed in areas we don't respect.
" Clearly, this pertains to dialing for dollars, don't you think? How many among us truly admire and respect cold calling? I know I do, because it has made and re-made my career many times over.
It put me through college and helped with graduate school.
It launched my consulting business on a shoestring.
I exploited a leased phone line and a few postage stamps to line-up a distribution network consisting of 40 universities and many trade associations and corporations.
It has enabled me to find publishers for several best-selling books which have spun-off hefty royalties, amazing media exposure, and yet more clients.
In fact, I respect cold calling so much that I favor it over all other business development media, given a choice of tools.
But the stark fact is that most people don't see it the way I do.
One guy said most salespeople would rather have a route canal than cold call.
A bit extreme, but this comment helped him to sell seminars on the topic.
A lot of folks suffer from phone fear, also known as call reluctance.
They envision such negative outcomes, such a "parade of horribles," that they de-skill themselves and fail to use even the most rudimentary tools that would assure their success.
I understand their pain, to borrow a phrase.
Still, they're whiners.
And the field should develop and sophisticate itself without paying attention to them.
If they don't respect cold calling I can't respect them, or hold their hands, or be an "enabler" of their avoidance behaviors.
I shouldn't coddle them and tell them fearing human contact by phone is normal and rational, because it isn't.
People on the other end of the line cannot zap us with a death ray or make us swallow dumb pills.
They don't give us cold sweats, or devise innumerable excuses and rationalizations for not making calls.
We voluntarily disable ourselves by fearing something that is basically so straightforward and easy as to be doable by teenagers.
I know, because I was a 19 year-old at Time-Life Books who became a top salesperson and sales manager.
Yes, it's time to focus on developing and disseminating a cold calling corpus of articles, tapes, seminars, coaching and consulting products which are for winners.
We can overcome many things, but disrespect is one of the hardest.
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