Cold calling is: calling up a person or business and informing them that you are interested in employment. This can sound intimidating, but it can be very effective for opening the doors to the hidden job market.
Cold calling allows you to possibly learn about a job that is not yet posted. For individuals with Aspergers/HFA it could seem very daunting to call a stranger on the phone and ask for a job. Some individuals never will be comfortable with this part of the job search, and that is okay. Other individuals love the initial autonomy of it.
For individuals with Aspergers/HFA here are some tips we utilize to help reduce fears when cold calling:
- Decide on the companies you would like to call. Think about companies that may have positions you are interested in, or if they already have a posting you can call to inquire about.
- Research the companies you are going to call. The more you know about them, and the more comfortable you sound, the better it will go. You don’t have to call your favorite company first. Practice first to get what you want to say down.
- Work on your one-minute commercial and feel comfortable being able to tell others about your specific skill-set and interests. Be enthusiastic! Practice with your family and/or in a mirror to become more comfortable.
- The first person you talk to may be a receptionist. Be very friendly and ask to speak to the person you have called to talk to. Or if you don’t have a name, ask for the hiring manager.
- Realize that you will talk to some really nice people as well as those who aren’t as nice. Don’t let them get you down. You may get a rejection, but remember all it takes is one, “YES!”
- If you aren’t able to talk to someone leave a message, and say you will call back. If you say that you will be calling back, the ball is still in your court.
- If it takes numerous calls . . . don’t get discouraged. Keep trying.
Pick up the phone and start calling!
By Maggie Cromeens
Maggie earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal and Fine Arts with a Major in Communication/Public Relations and a Minor in Non Profit Management from the University of Texas at San Antonio. She has worked for Compass Resource Group since 2011. She assists adults in Texas with disabilities in achieving their employment goals by providing training, job placement assistance, environmental work assessments, social skills training, and job coaching. She has been instrumental in shaping the services at Compass Resource Group to meet the needs of young adults on the Autism Spectrum who are transitioning from high school. She is a member of the DARS Statewide Developmental Disorders Team