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Being a contractor is a hard business. There’s constant pressure to complete your current jobs on schedule. But at the same time, you must get future work lined up, so you and your workers don’t end up with nothing to do. However, it’s hard to do both things well.
That’s why you need help. You need a telephone answering service to handle your phone calls and help manage future business while you attend to current business.
Unanswered Calls Means Lost Business
For Jimmy John, being a contractor was in his blood. He loves to use his hands to make things and enjoys seeing the work of his crew take shape to produce some amazing homes. It’s a great way to earn a living, and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
Except that things don’t always work out the way he wishes they would. He’s happiest when he’s onsite working on a project, but then his cell phone rings and interrupts what he’s doing. There goes his bliss. In one quick second, a ringing telephone steals his joy.
So, when he was in the zone working, he tried to ignore his cell phone. But when he did that he lost business.
Answering the Phone Hurts Productivity
Next, Jimmy John started answering every phone call, every time. He dropped whatever he was doing to talk with the caller. Sometimes it was important and other times it wasn’t. Sometimes it was about his next contractor project and other times it was a trivial matter that could wait.
After one particularly frustrating day, he looked at his phone’s call log and discovered he was averaging one call every thirty-five minutes. Those constant interruptions took a toll on his productivity. And not only did it affect his own work, but while he was on the phone he couldn’t direct his team or answer their questions. Answering the phone seemed about as bad as not answering it.
Hire an Answering Service to Restore Balance
That evening Jimmy John begged his wife for help. “No way,” she said shaking her head. “I’m not going to answer your phone, when I pay an answering service to answer mine.” She paused to let that sink in.
Jimmy John was a great contractor and a smart guy, but he was so busy with work and trying to manage his phone calls that he didn’t have time to consider solutions. Hiring an answering service was what made his wife’s interior decorator business take off. Why hadn’t he made the connection about how much it could help his?
With a smile, she slid him a piece of paper with a phone number. “Call Chris,” she said. “He’ll take care of you.”
The Perfect Solution
In less than two days, Jimmy John and Chris had things set up. The answering service would handle all of Jimmy John’s calls 24/7. They had instructions on how to screen callers, determining which ones were urgent and which ones could wait. For those few calls that absolutely needed an immediate response, the answering service would connect the caller to Jimmy John’s new cell phone number—a number only the answering service knew. For other important calls, the answering service told callers that Jimmy John was on-site and would return their call during lunch or at the end of the day.
The Ideal Results
Having an answering service manage his phone calls was the best move Jimmy John ever made for his contractor business. It allowed him to focus on the project when he was on-site. It also kept his pipeline full with future work. Now his next challenge is to expand his crew to keep up with the new demand.
Christopher Calhoun is president of Answering Service One, a new kind of answering service that wants to become your number one resource to handle all your telephone communication and customer service needs. Contact Chris at 865-505-0046. Peter Lyle DeHaan is a freelance writer from Southwest Michigan