The Phone Lady's Blog

Inspire Conversation

open-ended questions

8 Steps to Being Assertive

By Mary Jane Copps | March 6, 2016

This week my colleague, Catherine Doucette, BPR, MEd, CTDP, offers insight into the value of  being assertive in difficult conversations. Catherine is a Training and Performance Consultant who makes a measurable impact on organizations by delivering customized business communications, leadership, and training for the trainer (facilitation, … Read more

What We Accept Becomes Our Reality

By Mary Jane Copps | February 28, 2016

In the 1970s, Bell Canada introduced WATS lines (Wide Area Telephone Service), providing companies access to toll-free numbers and  long distance at fixed rates. Available throughout the US in 1967, indications are that AT&T was generating a billion dollars in annual revenue though WATS lines by … Read more

Top 5 Ways to Improve Your Phone Skills

By Mary Jane Copps | February 14, 2016

There’s no doubt that the value of phone conversations is steadily gaining recognition by CEOs, managers and entrepreneurs. Companies large and small are realizing that talking to customers and prospects on the phone builds stronger relationships, reveals opportunities and  directly supports increased revenue. So, if email … Read more

Combining Persistence and Gratitude

By Mary Jane Copps | January 31, 2016

I’m honoured to share with you a post from my colleague and friend, Steve Foran. His story on prospecting actually inspired a few tears on my part – in a good way. Read on:  Last weekend I experienced a collision between my philosophies of gratitude and effective … Read more

How May I Help You?

By Mary Jane Copps | January 17, 2016

  One thing I’ve learned since I started driving a car three years ago is … I was a terrible pedestrian. My lack of knowledge about what a driver experiences at crosswalks, on bright sunny days, at dusk on windy Fall nights or on blustery winter … Read more

The One Word Resolution

By Mary Jane Copps | January 2, 2016

Doors will be opened for those who dare to knock.  I haven’t kept any statistics, but I’d say I have about a 98% fail rate at keeping New Year’s Resolutions.  I can only think of two that I’ve kept diligently for several years – read … Read more

The Challenge of Living My Brand

By Mary Jane Copps | December 13, 2015

One of the disciplines I ask all my clients to embrace is persistence. Why? Because it’s always served me well. Since the beginning of my career in business-to-business phone sales (way back in 1987) up to today, persistence has garnered me more trust, more revenue and more recognition … Read more

Top 3 Challenges to Effective Phone Communication

By Mary Jane Copps | November 22, 2015

  When we pick up the phone to speak with our customers or prospects today, we encounter three main challenges that often prevent us from communicating effectively. Challenge #1:  Everyone is overwhelmed. It doesn’t matter who we are calling, or whether we are calling them at work or at home, or … Read more

Learning is Uncomfortable

By Mary Jane Copps | November 15, 2015

“To be outstanding, get comfortable with being uncomfortable.”  Alrick Koundenburg I’m reminded of these wise words every time I face a room of young students, some of them with pens poised, others with fingers hovering over keyboards. They are hoping I will say the one … Read more

Creating Fewer Decisions

By Mary Jane Copps | October 25, 2015

Decision fatigue is one of the biggest challenges impacting communication today, so it’s worth revisiting this information I first published in 2015. It is estimated that adults make 35,000 decisions each day – which does sound ridiculous, but when we consider that each email we … Read more

The #1 Way To Build Relationships

By Mary Jane Copps | September 13, 2015

Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something. Plato My summer months were filled with delightful social situations, but The Phone Lady part of my brain doesn’t always understand the word “vacation”. It still observes and analyzes, feeding my … Read more

What’s So Great About Fall?

By Mary Jane Copps | September 7, 2015

Yup – that’s a red maple leaf that crossed my path during my Labour Day travels. It’s a colourful reminder that … it’s September. And whether or not you live where leaves become yellow, orange and red, it’s still the final four months of 2015. Now is the … Read more

When We Communicate …

By Mary Jane Copps | August 30, 2015

“Some opportunities knock softly. Pay attention” Mark Hobbs, Partner, Fundmetric One thing I know to be true after 28 years as an entrepreneur: “You just never know”. Something seemingly insignificant can turn out to be an amazing opportunity and …vice versa. Our ability to notice … Read more

The “Tell” of Telephone

By Mary Jane Copps | July 6, 2014

Open-ended questions are the key to successful phone conversations with both customers and prospects – but we don’t always think of them quickly. Here’s my favourite. – I rely on it constantly and hear it used regularly by journalists:  “Tell me more.” As in: “Tell me … Read more

Powerful Words: How

By Mary Jane Copps | February 17, 2013

What is the cost in terms of time and lost opportunities when salespeople “chase” unqualified leads? This was the focus of a vibrant discussion I had this week with my colleague Peter Skakum  (http://tangentstrategies.com/). For me, in addition to the cost, the element of disrespect … Read more

Ask – And Keep Asking!

By Mary Jane Copps | August 29, 2012

Riding the subway in Toronto recently I was inspired by the slogan of one of the local cellphone companies. Adapting it slightly, I want to introduce it as a foundation or core value for business success: “How do you keep your customers and clients happy; … Read more

The More You Know …

By Mary Jane Copps | April 1, 2012

One thing I know for sure – it is human nature to think and speak in close-ended questions.  Another thing I know for sure – close-ended questions don’t help us get to know our customers, or serve them better.  So this week’s post is dedicated … Read more

Mary Jane shares her wisdom on lead generation, lead follow-up, and sales strategy on this podcast.
CBCs-The-Current
CRTC has recently taken new steps to fight fraud calls and phone scams. Read (and listen) to what Mary Jane has to say about this problem.
This Hour Has 22 Minutes
Episode featuring The Phone Lady - watch Telephone Lessons for Millennials.
The Wall Street Journal.
Some on Wall Street are hanging up on voicemail. See what The Phone Lady has to say.