The phone is your best friend

It's 9:30am on a Tuesday morning and after 20 minutes of research you've found the perfect company to approach.

Now you just need to work out who the right person is.

It must be this guy - Phil, Head of Commercial Operations - and so you spend the next 15 minutes researching both him and the company, trying to work out the perfect angle.

Now all you need is their contact details, but you can't find his email address or phone number. You spend 10 minutes looking for both and eventually locate a number.

You're 45 minutes in now and make the call, ready to deliver your perfect hook. You feel pleased with yourself and smile as you dial.

A woman picks up and you ask for Phil -

"Oh I'm sorry - he left 2 months ago."

"Ah you know who replaced him?"

"Who is it please?"

"This is Scott and I'm calling about XYZ."

"Phil wouldn't have been the right person anyway - just send us an email to and we'll get back to you"

..and you're on the back foot. You've lost all control.

Moral of the story - don't waste 45 minutes on one lead who, unbeknownst to you has moved on.

Research can only take you so far - companies don't often update websites, people don't always update their LinkedIn.

If you had just made a quick call and done a bit of fact-finding you would have saved yourself 45 minutes.

The phone is your friend - use it and stop hiding behind a computer screen all day.

People are infinitely more useful than navigating the minefield that is the internet with outdated and often irrelevant information.

People often hold the key, whether you need to clarify someone's position, responsibility, phone number or email address.

You'll be surprised just how helpful they can be.

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