I'm looking for more ideas on getting through gatekeepers and getting transferred to Managers at various companies. I have the managers names but not their direct lines. On occasion, I come across these lines:
"May I speak to _____?"
"Yes, may I ask who this is and what you are calling about?"
What lines have you guys found most useful to get transferred on? Please state the industry if applicable.
Second to both Amitai & Steve - let the person know it's a personal call if they ask, and don't sound stressed. If it helps, remind yourself that what you're doing isn't anything scurilious - recruiting is an honored profession that's an important part of the economy. Too many recruiters seem to feel bad about every call they make, when what they're really trying to do (if they're honest) is to become someone's trusted career agent - and that's a good thing.
I suggest you call higher up the org chart - grab a directory and call the VP levels of the functional area that you are recruiting for. When you do connect with them you'll get multiple openings instead 1 at a time.
There are many answers that can be given here to help. There is honestly no one way or trick to accomplish this task. It takes practice and persistence. I will give you a few pointers here, but if I can suggest to you: DEI Sales Training. Do a quick Google, it is incredible and will most certainly allow you to succeed.
It sounds as though you are working a full desk looking for new orders and than filling those orders as well. In order to find the orders you need to know and understand a few things:
1. Your market place
2. Which company or industry will have your openings
3. Which executives you are targeting and were they are within the organization (Org. Chart)
4. What you are going to say when you make the call.
Remember that each call is really important. When you get a live person on the phone you need to make the very best of it. You need to be the expert and drive the call from start to finish. Believe in yourself and your ability. The manager or person on the other end has no clue who you are, or the amount of experience you have; so dream and dream big. Pose yourself as a 30 year veteran who is sought after in the industry and one that has the most incredible candidate who is immediately available.
(That was the pep talk), now here are some techniques and follow ups.
When you are cold calling into a company it is very important to know the title and area you are calling. Lets use finance as a target for the example. I am looking to target some finance opening to staff for. Here is what I do.
- (secretary) Good Morning, how may I help you?
- (Me) Yes, can I please have the correct spelling of your accounting managers name? (most times they will spell the name or put you through to the voicemail)
But in your case and your example:
- (secretary) Yes, may I ask who this is and what you are calling about?
- (Me) A few responses could be:
• Sure, my name is Layla and I am calling from AMA. We are having a conference in your area, and we’d like to extend an invitation to you Accounting manger. Can I please have the correct spelling so I can send out an invitation?
• Well, actually this is a personal call, can I just leave a voicemail?
• (you can tell a little white lie) Well, my name is Layla and I am just returning his call from the other day.
There are many other turnarounds, but ALWAYS use the receptionist as your friend. Try to find out from her, who is who in the organization, do they use agencies? He/she pretty much know s all of the comings and goings.
When you get to the Hiring Manager:
Each call has to have a purpose, a cause and it needs to be catchy and quick. DO NOT get cute on the phone, present professional and you will get a professional. Break your call down something like this.
The purpose of your call is to gain the appointment or sale call to close a new order. To accomplish this I break my call into 4 areas.
2. Where I am calling from
3. Why you are calling
4. Set the appointment / gain new job order
Intro: - Keep it simple
- Good morning John, my name is Layla (Last Name)
Where I am calling from
- I am calling from (company name)
Why are you calling
- I am calling today John, because I am currently working with (company A) and (company b) (use competitors here) concerning their staffing needs.
Set the appointment / Gain Order
- If you are going to aim and gain the appointment end the call hard and go for it. He/She already knows you name company and reason for calling. Plus they are busy and received 15 other calls from your competitors earlier in the day.
o I’d like to get together with you to discuss what we are currently doing with (company a and company b), how we have been successful in cutting costs in their staffing budgets and how this can impact you. Let’s get together…how about Tuesday at 2pm? (pick your own day)
The hiring manager says to you, nope we are not interested; I already use another; I have no openings; We do not have the budget….
Obviously this requires finesse but if you are swift, you can use this one line, create variations and make it a turn around for all rejections.
“John, I understand and can respect that; A lot a my current clients felt the same way as you; however after we had the opportunity to speak, they were able to see how: (choose one or create your own along these lines.)
- what I am doing can save them money, why don’t we get together Tuesday at 2?
- What we do, was able to compliment their current process in saving them even more money why don’t we get together Tuesday at 2?
There is a ton more Layla, but keep in mind this is not rocket science.
20 connect to live people
15 to live HM’s
5 new appointments set a day
This results in:
25 new sales calls a week
With an average of 1 in 5 sales that is 5 solid orders a week.
Probably 5-6 tentative or soft orders.
Depending on the recruiting skills and team, that is 20 new orders a month that have a real potential to get filled.
How bout, " Hmmm . . . just a second . . . could you . . . first transfer me to Customer Service? Try doing it slowly . . . agonizingly slowly . . . The gatekeeper will (usually) transfer you immediately just to get rid of you and after chatting a bit with Customer Service a bit the Rep is usually very happy to help you by transferring you to the manager yo are seeking. If it is early or late in the day there try asking for maintenance first and then, after apologizing, then ask then to transfer you to the manager.
You already have the contact's name. . .just ask for that person by first name, very non-chalant, keeping it on a seemingly personal level, however, I always introduce myself first, repeating the gatekeeper's first name. If it is not given, then I'll say something like 'Good Morning, to whom am I speaking?'
"This is Gerti, Gatekeeper"
'Hi Gertie, Toni Buccarelli, before you transfer me, what is Joe's direct number, so I don't need to bother you again if I need to call him back?'
If she asks again, do not to get confrontational with this gatekeeper: Just doing her/his job. Say something like "Gertie, I appreciate why you're asking, but my call is somewhat personal. I really should talk with Joe before I give you the gist of it."
I am always act as sales representative. I am in Science field, as exemple, I am Denis of Fisher Scientific, we are launching a new catalog and I want to talk with the lab manager to see how many He would need,...
As others have said, be confident, and whatever you do, don't lie your way in. When I was with a start up software company, I had someone call and represent themselves as one of our business partners. Sure he got through to our president, but totally trashed his reputation with our company.
Understand that most people hate phone marketers because they feel that they
• Are lying
• Won’t provide them with any real information
• Won’t go into voicemail and let the potential buyer make their own decision about moving forward.
So I try and do the opposite:
• Be brief and to the point
• Provide them with the reason you are calling (it’s called sales not lying)
• Be prepared to leave the hiring official a message that they will want to return.
Additionally, make the admin your friend. Find out their name and make sure they remember you because when you call back later that week to follow up you can remind them that you’ve tried to reach their boss and you may get a better chance at squeezing some vital information from them…ie when is your boss most easily reached, would it be better to send an email, etc.
Case in point: my biggest fee ever (50K) was done by getting all the information I needed from the CIO’s admin. I spoke with her three times and she gave me all the hiring information, the right people to speak with at the division and even sent them an email letting them know that I’d be calling. To this day I still have never spoken with her boss.