Sorry, no phone calls please! What do you do?

10   Sep ,  2012 | 5

Hey everyone, apologize for being away for a bit.  I have been really focused on starting my own weather consulting company.   It will be launching next month and I promise to dedicate an entire post about it soon.

Now let’s get on to today’s topic.  You’ve seen this before on some job postings…”Sorry, no phone calls please!”.  Many people wonder if they can still follow up and call to “stand out”.  In my earlier post, “Do not press send“, I talk about picking up the phone and calling prospects.  But what happens if the employer doesn’t want you to.

It’s definitely a “gray area” issue.  I’ve read numerous articles and blogs on this and it seems most people are split 50/50 on it.  Some believe you should follow up with them anyway and show that you stand out.  Others believe you should respect the hiring manager’s wishes and get their attention another way.

I’m leaning towards the latter…especially in the meteorology world.  For example,  you’ll see a lot of “No phone calls please” many times in the broadcast meteorology space.  Why?  Well News Directors are already super busy and they do not want to be inundated with phone call after phone call about people’s tapes.  They want to have the freedom to look at the tape and call you about it if they are interested.  But you want to show your interest and get the attention of the News Director….what do you do?   Well, here are a couple of ideas:

1)  If you’re applying for an on-air meteorologist position, it’s more than likely there are other on-air meteorologists working at the station.  Call them, introduce yourself, and show them your tape.  Ask if you can perhaps meet them in person if you can swing a trip to the area.

Why meet them in person?  Well, the meteorologists will probably show you around the station, the set, and may introduce you to their colleagues.  And if you’re lucky…you’ll get to introduce yourself in person to the News Director.   Now you get to mention you’ve applied to the position…and you’re super excited and you’re just taking a tour of the station since you were “in the area” and the meteorologist was nice enough to have you come.   This is an excellent way to get through the door…whether it’s a meteorologist, or news producer, or a reporter…ask for feedback on your tape and get to know others at the station too.

2)   #1 would be the cool way to do it.  Then there’s good ole email or LinkedIn.  You can ask the News Director/hiring manager if they have received your tape/resume and see if it would be okay to follow up with them in a week.  Hopefully they will respond.

If they do not respond…there’s three ways to handle this:

a)  Wait another week and send another follow up email.

b)  Follow up through the admin or producers and find out if interviews have occurred.

c)  If they don’t know…I think it’s okay to ask for the News Director.  You can mention your name and ask if interviews have occurred for the position.   Yes, you have respected their “No Phone calls please”…but at the same time, you’ve sent them an email (or multiple emails) and followed up with other folks at the company.  I think you have the right to know the current status of the interview process so you can move on mentally.

There’s never a perfect way to do this because every situation is different.  My best advice is if you can’t meet folks in person.. use LinkedIn.  If you’re not on Linkedin, you ought to be.

Bottom line, this can be a similar situation when dealing with resumes too.  It’s a very gray area and you have to tread carefully to not make your potential future employer upset if they do not want phone calls.  But at the same time, you need to stand out from the 100+ applicants in the meteorology space.

So to sum it up:  In order to reach a potential hiring manager (especially when they don’t want you to call), I would try to be creative by networking with contacts who work with the hiring manager, use social media/electronic communication to reach them first, and ultimately the phone if the former options do not work.   Studies have shown, that only 5-10% of people are “creative”  when sending their resume/tape.  The rest of the folks  just press “Send”.    Just pressing “Send” means you go to the employer website or jobsite and send your resume blindly without speaking to anyone at the company.  Doing anything else falls in the 5-10%.  Yes you can still get a job by pressing “Send”, but the stats on that are becoming less and less.

I hope those of you reading this will make it a goal to fall in the 5-10% when applying to meteorology jobs.  (Photo credit:


Posted by AJ on September 10, 2012

  • The Weatherman

    So glad to see you’re back AJ, missed you.

    Hope your firm works out

    • freshAJ

      Thanks :)

  • Curtis

    AJ, you hiring any meteorologists for your firm :) And if so can I apply and do a followup phone call if I don’t hear from you :)

    • freshAJ

      Ha, nice Curtis. I won’t be hiring any meteorologists right now…but if I can grow it enough, then yes for sure :)

  • ctm13095

    Hey AJ, I was wondering if you could do me a favor. I am a senior at West Florida High School. I have recently been assigned a project, and for part of the project, I have to interview an aviation meteorologist. If you could, would you please email me, and I will ask you the questions I need to ask. It will not take long. Thank you for reading, and possibly responding.