Fundamental #25: Make your voicemail a valuable tool
This fundamental was written by Theodore Jon Cohen. Theodore is the General Counsel and a Vice President at Eastern Funding. He has 25+ years of secured lending experience, six with Eastern. His background, experience and education (he has been employed as a certified public accountant and has an MBA degree in addition to his law degree), makes him uniquely qualified to view transactions from a business, as well as a legal perspective, benefiting both the Company and its clientele.
Make your voicemail a valuable tool. Use your voicemail greeting to set expectations and to create a positive feeling for callers. Update your voicemail daily and create a warm, friendly style that makes callers want to speak with you.
Although it may seem like a simple task to accomplish, a lot actually goes into making your voicemail a valuable tool, including a strong sense of self-discipline.
One of the first things I do when I sit down at my desk for the day is change my voicemail greeting. I know it may be a bit dry and monotonous – go to message settings on your phone phone, enter the pin, hit a few more keys then record a daily message – but the diligence is worth it.
For example, I typically leave something like this: “Today is Monday, April 6, and this is Theodore Cohen. Please leave me a detailed message and I will return your call as soon as possible. You can always choose to send an email to me at email@example.com, that’s t-c-o-h-e-n at easternfunding.com.”
This tells everyone who gets my voice message that I am in on Monday, April 6, I can also be reached by email and that I check my messages on a daily basis – a great way to show commitment to requests from both clients and colleagues.
If I am going to be away for more than a day, I change my message to reflect that fact, and give them an alternative person and phone number to contact.
Here’s a good template I usually stick with: “Today is Friday, April 3, and, starting on Monday, April 6 through April 8th, I will be out of the office with limited access to voicemail and email. If your message is urgent, please contact Rosemary Parks at 646-723-6360. Nevertheless, you can still leave a message for me or send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, that’s t -c-o-h-e-n at easternfunding.com.”
In today’s business world, information is key. I try to provide those that call me with the information they need to determine how they should contact me. Anything you can do to improve communications around any task or request makes your life easier, improves relations with clients and colleagues and maintains order at your workspace.