Ask the Expert: Is cold calling a waste of time?

by MPA22 Sep 2014
By Dave Hershman
Special to MPA

The market has continued to slow down compared to last year. If the market continues to be slow, what is my best strategy for building my income back up to where it was?
--Juan from Florida

I could have gone in a hundred different directions in the answer to this question. My choice is to work on the issues that are most likely to affect the "rookie's" achievement of success. That is termed "call reluctance." Even this topic is way too large to cover in this short column. Entire books and courses have been taught on the topic. But the bottom line is, call reluctance stops more sales people from being successful than any other factor. The question is why?

For one thing, we teach new people to cold call both consumers and real estate agents. Big mistake. Cold calling is difficult and inefficient. That is why I talked about a person's sphere in an earlier column. The calling should be done within their sphere. In other words, networking.

Unfortunately, we don't necessarily want to call our most important parts of our sphere (friends, family, neighbors) because we don't want to badger them for business. Here is the good news -- you don't have to. You just need to teach them how they can help you. If you read Covey's work, Seven Habits, you have built an emotional bank account with these people and they want to help. They just don't know how. Everyone you know well knows at least one real estate agent well. Why can't they introduce you to them? They will if you ask. And if you know someone in a related business well, such as an insurance agent, they are likely to know several of them. Do not assume they know how to help you. Your job is to teach them. And stop cold calling.
--Dave Hershman

Do you have a reaction to this commentary or another question you would like answered? Email Dave at
Dave Hershman has been the leading author and a top speaker for the industry for decades with six books authored and hundreds of articles published.   His website is  If you have a reaction to this commentary or another question you would like answered in this column? Email Dave directly at   



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