In today's culture, technology grants us easy and immediate access to consume, to work, and to play. With that access, things begin to speed up. Everyday activities and entertainment are suddenly more efficient, and with all of this speed and efficiency, we tend do more. But, in doing more, we often wind up feeling overworked. It's easy to feel like you can't keep up with everything on your to-do list when there is so much opportunity. For me, it's sometimes difficult to keep up with the multiple ways guests and potential guests are able to contact me. I have trouble with time maintenance in responding and making time for actual phone calls, but i've come to find they're one of the things I should be prioritizing.
While I receive most of my service requests and inquiries through my social media accounts, one of the most impactful sources of communication is a guest phone call. Even though scheduling sites are effective, and it's extremely tempting to respond to inquiries with texting or chat messages only, I believe that one of the most professional forms of communication is a call. Though taking calls on a personal number might seem less efficient when you are busy hustling, missing important information or being regularly unavailable to our guests can have serious consequences.
Why It Matters
When making a first impression, tone of voice goes a long way. It's easier to miscommunicate when you are forced to type out an entire conversation. A phone call can easily be the point of difference that sets you apart from the thousands that offer the same services you do. My desire to connect personally with my guests grows my relationship with them and their trust in me significantly faster than any typed response. I retain more of my clientele and when they do arrive at the salon for the first time, they are more at ease before the service even begins.
Set a Time Limit
Hold the phone! Let's talk about that overwhelming feeling that we don't have enough time for phone calls. When I was first starting out, and my demand for services started to grow, I had a difficult time determining when enough was enough. I was taking phone calls as late as 10:00 p.m and it was extremely exhausting. I had to draw the line somewhere so I didn't end up feeling like I was being attacked with one phone call after the other. So, I decided on a healthy timeline as to when I would and would not be taking calls or responding to messages. I made it a point to respond within a 24 hour period and that I would be unavailable after 8:00 p.m. This way, I felt more in control.
Now, I encourage client calls as often as possible. Whether it be a guest behind the chair, a bridal inquiry, a team member in a photo shoot, or any other business related engagement, I know that my willingness to take and make business calls elevates my presence as a master of my craft.