With 9 years in the tradeshow industry, preceded by 8 years in retail and a couple random job years in between, I’ve learned a few things about basic business communication practices. And it’s amazing how old I sound re-reading that!
1- Make sure to put your out of office on your voicemail and e-mail messages. I promise I won’t contact you again until a few days after you’re back.
2-If you are leaving a voicemail, make sure you speak slowly during your phone number Remember, I don’t have your phone number memorized like you do, and I’m not going to waste time looking it up because you couldn’t take more than a second to give your number.
3-Do not leave your life story on a voicemail. If your voicemail is over 1 minute in length, I probably won’t listen to the whole thing before calling you back, and you’re going to have to say it all again, so just don’t.
4-If it’s urgent, leave a message, don’t just hang up and call again 5 seconds later. If I don’t answer once, the chance of me answering 5 seconds later is even less likely than the first time you called!
5-Do not, under any circumstances, call, leave a message, e-mail, then call and leave a message again about the same subject, unless the process to do so was over 1 week in time from first message to last message.
I bring you this very helpful etiquette list because this week and last week have been quite busy, crazy, and probably 10 other words to describe insane! Today I spent a whopping cumulative hour actually getting real work done, the other 7 hours were filled with meetings, interviews, and putting out fires. So, needless to say, I wasn’t sitting at my desk waiting for my phone to ring. Of the 5 voicemail messages I received (8 missed calls) ONE single person provided me the information I needed to assist them. The other 4 were missing very vital information, such as name, company name, what show they are exhibiting at, one didn’t even leave a phone number. Come on people, help me, help you!
My outgoing voicemail message will be changing tomorrow, not that it will help, but maybe it will help just 1 more person give me the info I need to return their call properly.