News & Research Archive

Why Is Cold Calling so Difficult?

Jul 17, 2006

Is cold calling a lost art? Why do even the most successful salespeople fail to schedule cold calling as a daily top priority? The desire to skip cold calling is even reflected in book sales: a popular business book is called Give up Cold Calling for Networking. Salespeople today seem to find every way possible to develop new business except to cold call.  Do they think cold calling is beneath them? Do they hold themselves to a higher standard than what cold calling requires?


We all know why we should cold call, yet we simply do not do it. Instead, we decide that a “warm call” is the better approach.


Cold calling takes patience, the ability to accept rejection, and a daily commitment of time in order to be successful. Because younger generations want immediate satisfaction and don’t accept rejection well, cold calling seems to be thing of the past.


Things have changed since I started in the business in 1984. Today voice mail can either prevent a true cold call from happening or enhance the prospect of a warm return call if the right message is left.


Fewer and fewer firms have live receptionists, which again can be positive or negative. Known as the gatekeeper, a live receptionist can be the best friend or the worst nightmare for a cold caller. In the past, learning how to get through the gatekeeper was a training lesson in itself. The automated attendant has changed all that. Now with proper research, a salesperson may identify the correct decision maker and connect directly to his or her voice mail.


One of the best salespeople I know believes that salespeople are peddlers, and that as soon as salespeople understand that that’s who they really are, they will break through the barriers that prevent them for being the best salespeople they can be. But most people today would be embarrassed to admit that they are peddlers. In fact, they are embarrassed to be called salespeople. Calling ourselves consultants or advisors is much more rewarding. As consultants and advisors, we cannot be expected to cold call, can we?


Written by: Hans Hansson


Hans Hansson is President of Starboard TCN Worldwide Real Estate Services as well as a member of the Board of Directors for TCN Worldwide Real Estate. Hans has been an active broker for over 21 years in the San Francisco Bay Area and specializes in office leasing and investments. If you have any questions or comments please email or call him at (415) 765-6897. You may also check out his website,

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