Monday, February 16, 2009
The Phone.....The Phone Is Ringing.
If you've ever watched a preschool series called Wonderpets, you'll remember the catchy opening line to each episode- 'The phone, the phone is ringing. The phone, we'll be right there. There's an animal in trouble somewhere...'
What happens when your phone rings?
a) Pick up on the first ring and say hello.
b) Check to see if the number is familiar before picking up.
c) Let the answering machine pick up, irrespective of you being close by or not.
And when you do get a message, do you call back or respond via email?
Your phone habits say a lot about you as a professional. A lot of freelancers are intimidated by phone calls and having to speak to clients. Most will prefer answering phone calls with emails. However, if the client has called you, it's usually for a reason. Either they need urgent clarification, they need to add something to their brief or they just feel more comfortable dealing with a live person rather than an email address. Whatever their reason, it's part of customer service to respond with a call (or pick up the phone if you're around). By ignoring a phone call, you'll likely to miss the opportunity of convincing a client (knowingly or unknowingly) of your abilities, gaining repeat business or even keeping the client. If you do feel unprepared or are not sure of what you can offer the client, then don't hesitate to say you'll think about it and call back. Or that you need some time to work on what he's requested. Or that you're in the midst of an alternative deadline, but will call him back in one hour. And then, do exactly that. The only thing worse than ignoring a call is to not call back when you say you will.
So the next time your phone rings, do yourself a favor and pick it up!
© 2009 Usha Krishnan Sliva
Freelance writer Usha Krishnan Sliva has years of article and copywriting experience. To get more free tips and writing ideas, subscribe to her ezine-Getting It Write, today.