The problem, as is always the case with this kind of apprehension, is fear of rejection -- more specifically, a fear that the person you're calling is going to not remember you, or is going to be put off for some reason because you're calling them after so long a silence, or whatever. These fears are common, but also extremely unlikely to be realized -- particularly after a lengthy silence, it's very unlikely that the person you're calling is going to have any reaction at all. The only thing you have to do, really, is jump-start the conversation. Harding shows us how.
The key to breaking the conversational ice, of course, is getting off to a good start; i.e., the opening minute or so of the conversation. In a way, it's a form of saving face -- you need to create some kind of excuse or cover for the conversation that both negates the long silence, and provides an acceptable reason for reconnection. Harding provides some very useful suggestions on how to to do this, which basically boil down to selecting one of four categories of opening statement:
- Something reminded me of you
- I need your advice
- There is something you should know
- How are the results of our past work for you?