Whoa – a brutal (challenging) week to reach clients by phone – which in some ways is kind of nice :)

This past week was one of the worst weeks I can remember at successfully reaching people.  Very few people responded to my emails, and even fewer picked up my phone calls.  Why?  I don’t know – I am just reporting what the data shows me.  In general, I reach people about 11% of the time when I make an attempt to reach them (which means when I *have* to reach them I need to try several times :)).  This week was 7%.  8% is lousy, and about as low as I ever see except for the week of July 5, Christmas, etc.  so this week was absolutely brutal.  Ironically though, I had several good meetings so it was overall a successful week.

Speaking of which, it is ironic that I make a lot of sales calls each week.  I *hate* using the phone — I literally walk several blocks to my favorite pizzeria to place my delivery order so I don’t have to phone in the order and I am pretty bad at returning voice mails but good about responding to text.  But my job pays the bills, and I’ve found over the years that phone is an effective tool for doing my job, so just have to grin (and reward myself with coffee and chocolate) and bear it.  I am also less likely to pick up a call from a friend than I am from an employee – I always pick up calls from people who work for me.  On weekends, I don’t pick up the phone from anyone who is not a client or employee – friends know to text me if they want to reach me, and if they don’t text then it must not be that important or must not be anyone that truly knows me that well 🙂

In my last job, we had this clown VP Howard in New York, one of those loud and annoying guys who is like 300 years old and was buddies with the CEO and always flying into everyone’s offices but no one knew exactly what he did.  He and I didn’t always see eye to eye — it was one of those things where my team was dependent occasionally on my pushing back on his intrusivness so that we could generate revenue, so to ignore him hurt my business but to push back hurt me politically and unfortunately he had a vested interested in one of our area accounts so was always in our business poking around.  But he was  also one of those guy was always calling on things that he could’ve emailed about, so we would have a 20 minute conversation (mostly one sided) about something that would have taken a 2-minute email or text exchange.  I used to call him (privately) the SHakespearean Fool – the foolish court jester that everyone pokes fun at but also has the king’s attention so is potentially dangerous.  I am very glad I don’t have to worry about that guy anymore.

Whoa – a brutal (challenging) week to reach clients by phone – which in some ways is kind of nice :)

Since my illness, I hate answering the phone

My job requies me to make quite a few phone calls, and that is okay.  But since my illness, I don’t like when people call with something that could be put down on paper (email or text).  Honestly, I never have liked phone calls, since almost always I am doing something and dislike the interruption, but since my illness a few years ago I truly dread when my phone rings, I think because I don’t feel well and it takes all I  have just to keep things moving forward.  I don’t mind in-person meetings or emails, but hate phone calls.  Go figure…  Unfortunately, so many of my peers insist on phone calls (especially in Sales Management) rather tahn emails, so that is a bummer.

Since my illness, I hate answering the phone

A receptionist I’ve talked to a few times is a crack up, and she clearly hates people who call (or at least sales people who call).

There is a glass manufacturer who I’ve called into a few times, and the receptionist who answers the phone is a crack up.  She sighs with annoyance when I ask to be transferred to a person, and the one time I didn’t hear what she said the exasperation in her voice was palpable.  First, why the heck is she so rude on the phone — I’ve been a receptionist before and part of the the job is to answer phones. It is like a car mechanic getting annoyed if someone brings a car into the shop.  🙂  Second, why the heck is her employer putting her on the phones?  She isn’t exactly making me want to buy my glass from her company 🙂   True, I am a Sales Guy by day, but then again, I am (at least I am rumored to be) a human being after my work day is done.  Third, why would anyone want to be rude to people? Isn’t it easier to be nice and cheerful?  It is exhausting being rude, in my book.  Still, she does crack me up – I chuckle every time I have to give her company a call.  And I feel sorry for her – it must be hard to go through life feeling annoyed all the time.  

A receptionist I’ve talked to a few times is a crack up, and she clearly hates people who call (or at least sales people who call).