How to Overcome the Fear of Walk-in Cold Calls

December 12, 2013

Cold calling is something that even many of the top sales people out there fear. Even after winning sales awards, each time they walk into a new potential client\'s office for the very first time, they get nervous, sometimes to the point where it is hard for them to make themselves venture out into the field at all. If this is affecting you as well, the issue is not that you are a poor salesman. Instead, it is just a matter of perspective. Changing your point of view on cold calls will help you approach your job with more confidence and reduce your levels of stress.

The process begins with looking at your point of view on sales. Instead of thinking of it as forcing something onto a customer that he does not need, think of yourself as an employee that walks into small businesses each month and gives the owner $5,000 in cash. Every month, that\'s all you have to do: walk into 20 or 25 offices and tell the owner that he has won a prize. If you imagine cold calling this way, you are less likely to be nervous. However, you might think that just walking around and handing out money is not the professional challenge you wanted. After all, anyone can walk around handing out cash.

So let\'s change the mindset just a bit. Pretend that you own a company that looks for small businesses that are in trouble. You give each owner a grant of $20,000 along with 10 complimentary instructional sessions to help them manage their businesses more effectively, sort of like the television show "Restaurant: Impossible." The good news is that your success has been so considerable that you have full outside funding, allowing you to focus only on helping the business owners find success. Because of your reputation in the community, your complimentary teaching sessions have a lot of value. You spend the majority of your time researching small businesses and looking for the one that can benefit the most from your assistance. Then, just once each week, you go into a business and tell the owner about the prize: a grant and free instruction. What would your attitude be about this job?

Frustrated sales representatives suffer from one or both of these issues. You either don\'t think that what you are selling is worth interrupting a business owner\'s time, or you think that your current job is beneath your talents -- or both. So change that mindset. If you are selling something as a contractor, you are a business owner too, and if you succeed, you will be making at least as much as that small business owner before long. Treat the owner like you are a peer who has come in to offer him an opportunity. If you come across as a person in a hurry, who has come in at random to give the business owner an opportunity, your attitude (and outcomes) are likely to be much different.

Another change that you need to make is shifting from trying to get business owners to like what you are selling to deciding whether the small business is even a good fit for your product. This paradigm makes you feel like you are important, and it places you in control of the experience. You\'re looking for candidates to succeed with what you are selling, rather than trying to drum up sales. If you think about your job in this way, you will not only have an improved attitude toward cold calling, but you will also see your results skyrocket.


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