Make It Your Policy Of Returning Business Phone Calls Within 24-48 Hours
Our daily activities may include making phone calls to catch up with someone we met while networking or returning a phone call from someone else.
There are times when I have left a message for someone and either didn’t hear back from them for days, sometimes weeks and on occasion not at all. Then you call again and hear this, “I was planning on calling you back but got so busy that I forgot”. When you wait too long to return someone’s call, they might have already given their business to someone else that was available. Keep in mind: if you don’t return someone’s call right away, you are leaving a question of doubt in that person’s mind. They might wonder if you are OK or if you care about them. You need to understand that their time is just as valuable as your own and we all get busy. If you say you forgot, they might assume you’ll forget other important details as well. If you are trying to establish a professional relationship, you need to stay on top of your responses. By not following up, you’re communicating that you’re just not that important to them to make their priority list.I know of a few people that don’t return calls promptly and are losing business because of it. It makes it difficult for someone to refer business to them if they don’t make it a priority to follow up. Depending on the relationship you may already have with them, they might assume that you will be understanding and forgive their delayed response. To some degree, you need to be flexible, emergencies do come up and maybe you’re trying to meet a deadline. That’s OK. However, if you have a habit of doing that all you’re doing is damaging their sense of trust in you.
Don’t be known as the person that never returns calls because it will only destroy your credibility and reputation.
Make a commitment to always return calls within 24-48 hours at the most. No matter what is happening, you should have no problem finding 5 minutes to call them back. Change your outgoing voicemail message and let your callers know that their call is important to you and you will call them back within the next 24-48 hours. If you can shorten that time and return calls within 4 hours, even better! Another suggestion might be to have them leave their email address in their voicemail message so you can respond by email. If you set their expectations in the beginning, you won’t disappoint anyone that might be looking to purchase something from you or hire you for their next project!