Here are four simple rules to follow:
- Rule #1: Express authority in every word. You are not trying to wheedle, cajole, or convince. You're calling on important business, so you need to sound as if you're the boss's social equal.
- Rule #2: Speak from your chest. Many sales professionals talk so that the sound resonates in the throat or (worse) whines in the nose. Powerful people always speak from the center.
- Rule #3: Use statements not questions. "Please put me through to Warbucks" is more likely to motivate a gatekeeper than "Can I please speak with Ms. Warbucks?"
- Rule #4: Never up-tilt your sentence endings. If you end a sentence -- even a statement -- with a rise in your voice, it ends up sounding wimpy and weak.
The above advice is adapted from a conversation with Wendy Weiss, aka "The Queen of Cold Calling".