The dreaded first phone call
I’m an auditory learner- I always have been- so put me in a situation where I’ve got to “try it out” for myself and the butterflies come swarming. Well, you can imagine my stomach had a pretty consistent swarm of butterflies from day two and across the next couple of weeks as I began calling candidates for my first jobs.
I distinctly remember the first phone call. I was ringing an IT contractor about a real job I was permitted to work on, carefully supervised. I dialled, secretly hoping he wouldn’t answer while looking nervously down at a job spec that contained a whole bunch of information I really didn’t understand. He answered, friendly and interested in the job. And try as I might, I just knew I wasn’t making any sense in my description. Anyway, after a bit of floundering on my part and a good deal of patience on his, we come to the agreement that I’ll send him out the detailed job description and he hangs up with just the slightest hint of laughter in his voice.
Sitting at my desk as red as a tomato, my trainer laughs and pats my shoulder. My only consolation is that it will probably get easier with time.
Sensing the pressure I’m feeling, the consultant who’s helping me quickly comes up with a few questions to ask my next candidate, questions that will allow for a slightly more structured phone call. He explains the meaning of a few techy terms that I definitely don’t understand and leaves me to try again.
I try to remind myself that they’re all people, just like me. I can’t let myself get worked up about this, it’s the bread and butter of recruitment.
As awkward as I was with the first call, my anxiety truly does ease with each new number I dial. At the end of week two, I’m still a bit edgy when I know I’m being listened to, but that’s only natural. I’m past the stage where I’m hoping for a voicemail, and I’m even coming to find it disappointing when they don’t pick up.