What is needed is a phone that will list the name of the person who's calling even if you don't have that person as a contact. So much easier to avoid sales people or telemarketers. I still get calls from them every once in awhile.
This truth reminded me of a short audio book I recently reviewed. The author discussed various interview techniques that would better a person's chances of receiving a second interview with a company. Most of them I understood and thought pretty obvious (proper grooming, arriving fifteen minutes before the scheduled interview, firm and confident handshake) but the one that impressed me was obtaining contact information and the follow up.
I remember an interview I had with a Fort Dodge newspaper. I was applying for a graphic design position and I was their first interviewee. I was excited and I eagerly took the first available opportunity to drive three hours to meet with the employers even though I was losing sleep because I had worked the previous night.
The interview went okay. Not great, probably could have gone better, but that's the case most times. What I remember is that I sat in a room with three people and answering questions from two. The third never smiled, never spoke, and seemed pretty unhappy about being there. I don't know why she had this attitude, but I tried to include her in my answers with eye contact and smiles.
Well, I don't knew whether she had any influence but I didn't get the job (their loss. Lol). Maybe I would have made a better impression had I known about this one aspect of interviews.
When you meet someone for an interview, remember the name. Get his/her contact information, which includes phone number and email address. If you meet with a panel, get everybody's contact information. Immediately after the interview, and I mean before you drive out of the parking lot, text everybody and thank them for the interview. Then immediately upon arriving home, deliver a follow up email to everybody, again thanking them, and briefly reminding them of a few salient points on why you would be a good hire.
This is an excellent idea for prospective employees...and, yeah, you knew I was going to mention them...authors. Get contact information from every appearance you make, whether on radio, television, libraries, book stores, or wherever you are promoting your books. You're going to thank your audience but make sure you recognize and thank every individual who help coordinate the event.
I stress this for all authors because this is an area where I need shoring up. I am weak in this area and I need to do better. I am truly and sincerely grateful to every person who buys my books. I'm not egotistical or arrogant when someone says he/she purchased my book. I don't even ask for an opinion even though most will comment on the story. What I do is immediately thank them. “Thank you.” Two of the most difficult words to utter sometimes. Seriously. I sometimes feel awkward thanking people for their efforts, their involvement, their contribution or their assistance. I used to be very hesitant about thanking people even though I was thankful to them.
My attitude is better nowadays since I'm a published author and have entered a brand new world of struggling writers and other authors seeking attention. I still need some work on remembering names and asking for contact information. Follow up is no problem but getting to the point of following up takes some work.
This point is very important for a writer's future relationships. Don't forget anybody who helps you along the way.
Remember the old adage – don't upset the people you meet on the way up, because you'll meet those same people on the way down.