...And we're really looking forward to partnering with the National Pso...National Sor.....National SO. Uh, never mind. Just please call me back
What you just read was the tail end of the message left to me by a salesperson for a cycling accessories company eager to work with our event. The word he was looking for was psoriasis or suh-rahy-uh-sis as in the National Psoriasis Foundation. He could have easily found the information right on this website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/psoriasis. He also could have heard the word pronounced on any number of YouTube videos on the topic.
Up until his bungled close, I was intrigued and intended to call him back. I didn't. I'm not the most sensitive guy in the world but hey, I wanted to feel a little special. The fact that he probably didn't look at the name of my organization until it was time to tell me how eager he was to partner with us told me I wasn't as special as I thought. It did tell me that I was clearly the 5th, 15th or 50th call in his rotation that day. Let me be clear - I get it. I have my call list every day too. But take the time to look down, see who you're calling and know HOW TO PRONOUNCE THE NAME!
So, in the spirit of turning this negative experience into a positive one, I wanted to share 5 basic suggestions for starting off on the right foot when prospecting for new business relationships. WARNING: Several of these are going to be no-brainers (think Captain Obvious in those clever hotels.com commercials). But as I saw with this recent phone call, the obvious isn't always obvious to everyone.
Robert Grabel is the President of Nonprofit Now! You can find his posts here and at www.robertgrabel.com
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