First Time Calling for an Informational Interview
I had planned on making my first call right away, but found that every time I thought about doing it I was filled with a lot of dread. I just didn’t want to think about it. So I put it off a day.
The next day, I prepared myself to make some calls. I used the internet to research various places I could call to ask for informational interviews and wrote down the numbers.
When I was ready with the first number (Kaiser hospital) and all I had to do was press send, I felt my heart pounding. I couldn’t bring myself to just push the button though, and the longer I waited, the worse it got. Eventually I put down the phone and went to the computer. I googled “phone phobia” and came across a variety of postings by people who have phone phobia. Reading other people’s fears helped me, and made me realize how much harder a lot of others have it even. Some can never bring themselves to do it, or wait weeks.
After reading others experiences, I felt comforted. I picked up the phone again and held my thumb over the send button. I still hesitated. But then as I was shifting on the couch, I accidentally pushed send! The phone was ringing! By then I had no choice but to let the phone keep ringing and prepare to talk with someone. I didn’t mean to push the button like that, but it got the job done!
I wasn’t taken to a person though, and instead had to punch in all these different numbers to get where I wanted to get to. Then all of a sudden the phone was ringing again. A lady answered, and I said my spiel. To my dismay, soon after I had finished talking and she had begun to talk, the call somehow got lost. I had to call again!
So I called again, punched all the different buttons again, and got a hold of the lady again, saying I had just called and the call got lost. I repeated what I had asked earlier. She told me that she didn’t think there were any occupational therapists I could interview in this department. My heart sank. I wasn’t quite sure what to say then and was confused on why there weren’t any occupational therapists I could talk to. She said she would connect me with the operator then and maybe he could help me. So I agreed, and the phone rang again, then a man answered. I gave him my spiel again, then heard nothing on the other end, then found the phone ringing again! I didn’t know what was going on or where I was going to be taken to next. It seemed like the operator didn’t know how to help me either.
The phone was answered by a lady who I thought was the same lady I originally talked to and had connected me to the operator, and after verifying, I learned it was her again! I wasn’t getting anywhere and neither of them knew how to help me. It was kind of stressful and confusing. It wasn’t what I expected to happen. Eventually she said that she would transfer me to the head of the department where I could leave a voicemail. So the phone rang again, then I got the voicemail message. Luckily beforehand I had written out a few different scripts depending on whether I got a secretary, the person, or the voicemail. I looked at my voicemail one and left my message, repeating my name and number twice and being sure to go slow. I was told I wouldn’t hear back until Monday.
That first call didn’t go as smoothly as I had thought, but I managed to get through it. The hardest part was just making the call in the first place, which funnily enough I finally was able to do because I accidentally pushed the send button. If this doesn’t happen though, in the past I have had my brother or mom push the button for me since sometimes I really just can’t bring myself to do it. I get nervous as I hear the phone ring, but at least I’m finally making the call.