What NOT to do when starting a business – part 2

If you are just joining this blog and wonder what this is all about, please read the previous post! This is an opinion about using your cell phone as your business phone.

STOP and think about these things – and don’t just think about them for a moment or two – let them roll around in your head for a while:

One of the most important things in business is to be consistent. Your customer should always receive a consistent experience when dealing with your company. The first part of their experience will be their very first phone call.

What can you do to ensure that the phone will be answered in a consistent manner? If you are using your cell as your business number, what will you do if you’re meeting with a customer and it rings? How about if you are in the grocery store? What if you are on a noisy job site? What if you are in an area with no service? What if you are out to dinner with the love of your life? Yes, in all of those cases, the call could always be sent to voice mail but think about the message that you are sending to the caller and to the person you are with when the phone rings.

Perception is everything…You may be a one person start-up business but do you really want your clients to know that you are in the process of just getting this thing off the ground? Do you want them to know you are a one man sales-service-accounting-billing-design-installation-complaint department? It’s hard to stand in front of someone and juggle that many balls while being your own receptionist.

Furthermore, when handling business calls 24/7 with your cell phone, it will intrude on your personal life. Is any business phone call more important than a personal relationship? No one wants to feel that they are your second choice.

If a customer calls and realizes you are at Home Depot at 10am on a Wednesday and your business has nothing to do with construction, what are they thinking? How about when the checker at the food store asks if you have any coupons while you are discussing an upcoming meeting with a potential client? Few people can pull off a serious conversation in the midst of another activity and all of that ambivalence bleeds over into the call. You won’t sound sharp because you won’t be sharp; you will be using one part of your brain to extricate another part of your brain and ask it to jump in and take over while your complete the thing that you had started before the phone even rang.

Check back for more thoughts…

Deb Crown
TowneAnswering.com

Deb Crown

About Deb Crown

Towne Answering Service was established in 1968 to provide answering services for medical and commercial clients in the southeastern Pennsylvania area. Utilizing the best technology available at the time (the time was 1968 and the technology was a switchboard), Towne was able to establish a very faithful clientele, the majority of whom are still with us today. As time passed and technology advanced, so did the equipment. The answering service equipment evolved from switchboards to a basic computerized system with handwritten messages. From that, we were able to move to a fully computerized, paperless, state-of-the-art messaging system with digital lines and switching and were able to partner with our clients and provide a higher level of service.