There is a universal issue that virtually every business owner has to confront: How to strike the right balance between work and life obligations.
It’s not an easy task. On one hand, operating a successful business requires going above and beyond for clients. Your customers expect you to be accessible where and when they need you. Fail to do this and your competition will gladly step in.
Yet business owners are people, not machines — people with friends, families and all kinds of personal responsibilities. This means that what’s best for a business — and what’s best for its owner — are sometimes at odds.
Yet thanks to technology, reconciling these two sets of obligations is easier than ever. One of the simplest ways to greatly expand your company’s accessibility and reach — while still keeping your schedule realistic — is the use of an after-hours answering service.
Running A 24-Hour Business Nine-To-Five
A generation or two ago, before the advent of email, social media, video conferencing and other technology tools, most businesses and their employees were inaccessible outside of normal hours. Today, however, customers have different expectations. When they have a question to ask or feedback to offer, they want to reach out immediately.
If you’re running a small business with limited hours, there’s a simple way to accommodate your customers’ desire for greater accessibility — use of an after-hours answering service. Rather than turning on voicemail and hoping for the best at the end of the day, business owners can rest secure knowing that a highly-qualified, live person will assume phone answering duties.
That’s important for a variety of reasons. First, it keeps your existing customers happy. Rather than having to wait overnight for information (an eternity in today’s on-demand digital world), they can speak to someone immediately. Timely and responsive customer service of this type is critical when it comes to customer satisfaction and retention.
Second, having an after-hours answering service doesn’t just keep your existing customer base happy — it also helps attract new business. The sound of a friendly, helpful well-informed voice on the other end of the line encourages callers to follow up. A voicemail message, on the other hand, sends no similar message. Potential customers will frequently hang up without leaving a message, perhaps never to call again.
Finally, having an answering service for after hours is a competitive advantage. Not only does it extend the reach of your customer service, it also adds an additional layer of professionalism. Businesses who make the effort to accommodate their customers around the clock will earn added loyalty.
Striking the appropriate balance between work and life obligations is one of the more difficult challenges any business owner must face. While it’s imperative to be accessible for your clients, it’s also important to keep a healthy perspective.
An after-hours answering service is an excellent way to help bridge this divide, as it allows you to provide greater customer service while respecting your schedule. Contact MAP Communications today to start your free 7-day trial.