Sep. 18th, 2012

royalmarriage: (Default)
So, as I've said before around these parts, I have...difficulties when it comes to making 'phone calls. Have done for...well, ages. Either despite, or possibly because of, the fact that one of my first jobs involved telephone sales calling. Business to business, rather than calling people in their own homes (although I did that as a summer job once and didn't enjoy that experience...), but nevertheless.

Most of the time, it's not really an issue. The two people I feel comfortable calling, my mum and Sarah, I'll call them if I want/need to. Anyone else, I'll text or email most of the time. If they call me, it's not something I feel uncomfortable with (I sort of rationalise it as, if I 'phone somebody else, I might do so at a time that's inconvenient for them, they might not appreciate me calling, whereas if they call me obviously they want to speak with me). So that's okay.

Similarly, most of the time at work it's not a major issue. The bulk of my work includes maintaining the information on a database we hold of various organisations and services. Every day I send out forms containing the information we currently have, and every day I receive forms back containing any necessary amendments that need to be made.

Trouble is, sticking to my comfort zone of sending out the forms by post, email, and occasionally fax, has led to a situation where there's a heck of a backlog building up, and certainly by comparison with my colleagues in other parts of the country I'm not doing terribly well. Which means 'phoning some of these organisations has become a bit of a necessity.

Sometimes - particularly in the case of the older ones - I'm finding I get an unobtainable tone, and accompanied with a dead website and a bouncing email address, I interpret that as "organisation no longer exists". Nevertheless, I still function on the assumption that the next call I make will be answered by someone. And I find myself having to psych myself up to make that call. That's been known to take over 15 minutes, just to "get in the zone" where I feel up to making the 'phone call. Even then, I've been known - if someone answers the 'phone and I don't really feel as comfortable as I wanted to - to just mumble, "sorry, wrong number," and put the 'phone down sheepishly.

But increasingly, I'm finding that the psyching up is taking less time, and that I'm feeling more comfortable about speaking to whoever answers my call. It helps, I think, that I've sort of got to the point where I've got a "script" that I'm working to (in my head rather than written down, but even so), and most people when they hear the script are happy to help out, with the occasional one or two who need to pass me along to their manager or something. The more success I experience (in terms of the people I ring being polite and pleasant instead of, as I expect, shirty and unpleasant), the easier I find it to make the next call. And although there are still a number or organisations that are proving difficult to get hold of (some of which I suspect no longer actually exist), I'm increasingly having success in terms of updating the relevant records.

Today - not counting the organisations I've rung and been unable to get through to - I've managed to update a grand total of ten records.

That feels good. More would be nice, but it's 5:30pm, so I think time to go home.

Hopefully tomorrow can be as successful, if not more so.

But I feel a bit good right now. :-)

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