I made a prospecting call.

He picks up and actually answers with his own name (that’s already a win!)

I tell him my name and remind him how we know each other, BUT it is tremendously noisy. It sounds like it is a heated meeting!

I say ‘it is super noisy – is now a bad time?’

He replies it is and he’s in back-to-back meetings, but could he call me back at 3pm?

I say ‘yes of course’ and get off the phone.


Was that the right thing to do?

Shouldn’t I have capitalised on actually getting through to him? What if he didn’t call me back at 3pm – I’ve lost my one and only golden opportunity!

Welcome to the real world and one of the typical dilemmas salespeople face.

Customers have work. They are busy. You are (nearly always) an interruption. Even if you are solving a problem for them, I promise you, they are not sitting there in a vacuum twiddling their thumbs and thinking “oooh I wish some someone would call me, to pitch something at me”.

It is about respect for their time.

In this situation, if you don’t get off the phone FAST, you become:


(then the chances of a 2nd chance reduce to zero)

You need to have the emotional intelligence to gauge when they are busy – listen out for background noise, the tone of their voice, how distracted they seem. These are clues. If you’re not sure, ask them (just like I did).

So what happened?

He called me back at 3pm

That was several years ago. He became a client and I still regularly deliver training for his team. One of the main reasons for this success was that I handled this first opportunity correctly.

Do your sales team have the emotional intelligence to handle their calls like this?

If not, let’s chat about how we can stop them wasting opportunities.

Schedule a call with Janet

error: Content is protected !!