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Always Answer Customer Calls
Guest articles > Always Answer Customer Calls
by: Daniel Milstein
Prospective customers want to know you are available whenever or wherever they might need you. If you want to make them feel like you are the person to contact, you must take all customer calls.
I have a well-deserved reputation for carrying on multiple phone conversations simultaneously. Unlike other companies, Gold Star eschews the use of voice mail. My belief is that if the phone has rung three times, it has rung two times too many. People shopping for a product or service typically do not want to wait for a call-back; they will find another salesperson who can offer the same item. If our originators aren't able to take a call at their desk, it goes direct to their cell phone, which they are encouraged to answer right away. I have two desk phones, a BlackBerry and another cell phone, and all are usually ringing throughout the day. When I am speaking with a customer or lender and another phone rings, I will ask the first caller if they want me to call them back or if they can hold for a minute; they usually want to wait. Then I will see if I can briefly help the second caller or ask them to hold or wait for a return call, then return to the initial conversation. Frequently I will have three to five calls under way at the same time; my record is 11 simultaneous conversations.
Of course, I also have assistants to help manage incoming calls, but the point is that I strive to get clients' answers and address their concerns immediately, rather than having a long list of return calls. It is a more efficient use of time and also impresses customers when they think you are handling their issue right away. During the last decade, I have refined my multiple call strategy so that I am able to answer each caller's questions and make recommendations briefly and personally. I have learned to get to the point quickly, assess the caller's immediate situation, and determine what additional information is required.
Customers want to speak to you personally and immediately when they have questions or problems. If you develop a system where you personally respond to any call they may have, you will reinforce that you are the person in the industry to contact.
Daniel Milstein is the bestselling author of ABC of Sales. For more information, visit: http://amzn.to/ABCARTICLES.
Contributor: Daniel Milstein
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