Nobody expects you personally to be available 100% of the time. However, your customers may expect that their calls are answered every time they attempt to connect with your business over the telephone! It’s important to meet the expectations of your customers, especially if your business has set the expectations to include telephone answering 24/7. But, is it best to answer every call, even if it comes at the cost of quality? Not always. Here are some times that we recommend that you NOT answer a call. Do NOT answer your phone: On the 6th ring. Answer before the 3rd ring. Do not let the phone ring on and on, if you can’t answer it, ensure that your voicemail picks up after the third ring. During Lunch. Is there anything worse than listing to someone else chew and talk with their mouth full on a call? Yuck! Oh, get rid of the gum before you pick up the phone too. Double-Yuck!! In chaotic surroundings. Background noise will distract both you and your caller. Try to answer all of your calls in a quiet place to ensure that nothing important is missed. When it’s not your phone. Only answer the phone you have permission to answer. You may confuse your caller, and also deprive them of the ability to leave a private message to the person the call is meant for. When you’re actually out of the office. If you’re picking up to answer while on the beach or the golf course you’re not doing yourself or your caller any favors. Allow your calls to go to voicemail if you are not in a position to commit fully to callers. Allow yourself the time to enjoy day’s off, and give your caller correct expectations about their call. Have them leave a message after your voicemail greeting lets them know that you are out of the office and when they can expect a follow-up. When you’re in the middle of something else. Your caller will notice if you are distracted. If you’re going to answer the phone, put down all other work before you answer. ANGRY! If something has you worked up, take a few minutes to calm down and shift your focus before answering calls from clients. Callers will pick up on your tone, and likely assume that they are the reason for your agitation. Have you done any of these? 😉 No body’s perfect, but if you want your calls to never go unanswered, and without the chewing, we can help!