In today’s world of texting, cell phones, emails, Facebook, twitter and other social media services we seem to get hit from all sides returning emails, texts, etc at all hours of the day night and weekend. We seem to be beholden to these devices as our masters. We jump every time our smart phone dings, chirps or vibrates. It seems as soon as a client gets your cell phone number you are now available 24×7 at any time no matter what the issue, even when the issue would be better attended to by someone else in your organization.
The fact is technology was originally designed to give each of us control of our life, here are 7 tips to take back control of your time and life which will ultimately enhance your work-life balance.
Set client expectations when you’re available and the best way to engage you and your organization. Let them know upfront how your organization works so they can best be served. Give them a contact escalation list so they know when, who and how to work with your company. As an example in our after-hours support you leave a voice mail. Then the system attempts to connect with the on-call technician and the first to take ownership is then played the message and has a chance to wake-up, get composed and address the emergency. The system also reports back who actually took responsibility.
STOP running your business from your smart phone. From the start you should design your business with growth even if you’re a solo practitioner. It gives you the ability to scale and not have to reeducate your clients on your procedures. My voice mail states if this is a customer care issue press 2, if you need to reach me right away press 1 and the system will attempt to locate me via use of find-me-follow-me, if I can’t be located then you are returned to my voicemail greeting and the system will send me a text notification regarding your voice mail message. A VoIP solution is an inexpensive and smart investment to solve this.
When returning calls from your smart phone use a VoIP app which will show the caller ID as coming from your office. In this manner you will never have to give out your cell number. There are also VoIP systems which can have multiple numbers on your cell phone so you have both a personal as well as business number.
Use AIRPLANE mode. When I am in a client meeting the client who I am with is the most important person at that time. They have given me the gift of their time and I intend to respect it. I know even when I feel my phone vibrate it is a distraction to the meeting. By placing the phone on Airplane mode I will not be interrupted by the device. This allows you to be truly present with your clients and prospects.
Get an App like Agent which will allow you to control when, where and how you accept calls on your smart phone.
Check the smart phone at the door for internal meetings. Yes, leave the smart phone or other device at the door. The fact is it can wait until the meeting is over. When the devices are checked meetings run smoother, individuals are actually present to the topic at hand, they run more effectively and seem to take less time.
Turn off Notifications on your Smart Phone. Let’s face it, you don’t need the phone to ding every time someone posts something new on Facebook or a new story comes across on your favorite news feed. I personally felt a sense of relief when I turned off notifications. I actually think my blood pressure dropped as I am so much more relaxed.
For additional tips and tricks on how technology and VoIP can best serve you contact us at email@example.com or call our office at 312-780-1010.