How to Avoid: “Will He Know What This Call is About?”

How many times have you been stopped by the gatekeeper asking you:

“Will he/she know what this call is about?”


“Have you spoken to him/her before?”


“Is he/she expecting your call?”

Frustrating, isn’t it?

In all likelihood, you yourself are creating this objection by the way you’re opening your dialogue with the gatekeeper.

The number one mistake inside sales teams make when asking to speak with someone is not using a directive statement afterward. In other words, just asking to speak to someone and then not saying anything else.

The number two mistake is not giving your company name, thereby forcing the gatekeeper to do her/his job and ask you for it.

Here’s what not to do:

Gatekeeper: “Johnson company, may I help you?”

Sales Rep: “Can I talk to {prospect’s name}?”

OR worse:

Sales Rep: “Is {prospect’s name} available?”

The problem is that you didn’t use the magic word: “please.”

Using “please” instructs the gatekeeper to put you through, and, at the very least, encourages them to be polite to you. Here’s how it usually goes:

Gatekeeper: “Johnson company, may I help you?”

Sales Rep: “Hi, can I speak with {prospect’s name} please?”

Gatekeeper will now ask: “Can I tell him who is calling, please?”

Note here that the gatekeeper will use “please” right back to you—this as a good sign! The gatekeeper is now taking your lead and being polite to you!

You reply exactly with:

“Absolutely! Please tell him/her {your first and last name} with {your company name} is holding please.

That last part: “is holding please” is the directive part that both instructs the gatekeeper to put you through, and signals the end of your transaction with them.

This technique works 80%+ of the time.

So, if you’re getting any of the previous screening questions, you can end that today by learning and using a better approach.

Try it for a week and smile as you get put through to more decisions makers!

Related: Didn’t Get That Job? Is That a Bad Thing?