How to Begin Conversation When Cold-Calling?

Anonymous writes:
I read your article on Job Hunting Cold Calling. I’ve been employing this
strategy for a few weeks and have had great success in getting the
names of hiring managers and answers to specific research questions.
But once you reach out and contact the senior executive who’s hiring
for the position what’s the best approach in beginning and conducting this
conversation? I’m interviewing for senior positions in marketing (i.e. VP
director 17+ years of exp). I can manage all of the other conversations
but I’m stumped when I get to this point. I need something more than “ask
for an interview.”

The Career Doctor responds:
A quick review for readers because I still believe cold calling should
be part of any job search (along with networking at the top of the list
and reviewing and responding to job postings). Cold calling is a proven
method of finding employment — but you need to follow these steps to
be successful:

  1. Compile a list of all companies that you might be interested in working for.
  2. Research and gather the names of the people who have the power to offer you a job.
  3. Write and send a dynamic cover letter that will get the attention of each hiring manager.
  4. Contact the people you wrote to in the third step — and ask for an interview.

Cold-calling works better at lower levels but it still has potential for someone at
your level. I suggest you take the approach of using cold calling more for networking
purposes which may indirectly lead to job interviews. Use cold calling to increase
your visibility in the field. Instead of asking for the interview ask about having a
meeting doing a lunch or playing a round of golf.
You may be interested that a book releasing Sept. 2012 100 Conversations for Career Success: Learn to Tweet Cold Call and Network Your Way to Your Dream Job! which offers an entire chapter on cold-call conversations.
Want to know more? Read the article that inspired the question. Go to:
Cold Calling:
A Time-Tested Method of Job-Hunting
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