How available are you? In the words of John Inman in ‘Are you being served,’ can you say with confidence ‘I’m Free?’
Of course it is always a great thing to be available to speak to your prospects or clients. While you may be able to talk to them but are you really available? You need to give them your full and undivided attention, to really discuss what they have called you for and offer the best solution to their need.
If you are distracted, can you really add value? Are you really available?
You know the scenario -: prospective client X has called to discuss his or her requirements. It just so happens they have called as you are due to go into a meeting, responding to a detailed Email, preparing a proposal or quote, or while you are trying to attend to your accounts. It can be very difficult to switch your focus to giving client X your full and undivided attention. Remember Client X has no idea that just seconds before you were wrapped up in an all consuming task, but because you have answered their call they assume you have all the time in the world to talk to them and that they have your attention. You may be conscious that you should be on your way to that client meeting, anxiously looking at the clock, seeing how quickly you can get this person off the phone without appearing rude.
That’s not to mention the work or task you were involved in before now taking a bit of a back seat, although that is another blog post entirely! It is here if you want a read.
Although it might be a great thing at 1st glance that that every time someone calls your business they get to speak to you, your constant availability might start to raise questions. If you can always answer the phone – as your client when are you working for me? Are you really happy to answer you phone at 10pm on a Friday or Saturday night?
If I telephone Virgin Atlantic and Richard Branson answered the phone each time I called I might wonder why…. although this is a flippant example I think you get my point.
In fact you probably aren’t available all the time to take calls, you are out at meetings, doing other things that demand your attention.
Are you really available?
So unless you really are available and really can add value, why not still afford your callers the luxury of talking to a real person who can have a sensible conversation with the caller be they an existing or prospective client. By relaying you all the information you need in a concise format you can call them back when it is convenient and be able to say ‘I’m free’ with confidence!