There are a couple of reasons why you might want to phone a potential employer. You may simply want to ask if there is any work currently available. If you have seen a specific job advertised, you may be calling to get information to write to the company.
Either way, below are some handy tips for phoning companies and other organisations.
Before making your call
Be clear in your mind about the purpose of your call
Find out as much as you can about the business or organisation you are calling
Jot down some questions you will ask or the information you need to give
Write down your skills and personal qualities that suit the organisation you are calling
Think about what you’ll say if you reach an answering machine. Prepare a short message about your reason for calling and the number for the business to call you back.
During your call
Clearly say both your name and the name of the person you would like to speak to (if you do not know the name of a particular person, ask to speak to the manager or the person responsible for staffing or recruitment)
When speaking to the person, indicate that you are looking for work
Talk about why you chose to call that particular business or organisation
Talk about how your skills, qualities and experience are suited to that type of business
You can take notes while the person is talking
Remember that it is okay to politely ask the person to slow down or repeat something you have missed
When the conversation has finished, give the person a short summary of what you understand has been discussed
If they agree with your summary, thank them for their time and finish the call.
After your call
As soon as you get off the phone, make notes about the conversation
Set out the things you need to do and when you need to do them.
If things get tricky
If you begin to feel agitated during the call, take some deep breaths. If necessary, be quiet for a moment to gather your thoughts.
If things do not improve, ask if it would be okay to phone back at another time when you’ve had a chance to think more clearly.
Some handy hints for making your call
When you’re ready to make your call, have in front of you your notes about the company, your skills and qualities, and any questions you may ask. Keep a blank notepad and a pen by your side. Have a glass of water within reach as taking a sip of water during a phone conversation can be a good way to settle your nerves. Take a few deep breaths to relax, then dial the number.