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How an out of hours answering service can transform the way you work

out of hours answering service

Running a business is not an easy endeavor. Long hours, constant phone calls, emails, customer queries, and complaints – stress is often a problem.

Entrepreneurs are some of the most passionate and driven individuals you will ever meet and it’s this passion that leads to world-changing beauty, progression, and the development of jobs and economic growth for entire regions. 

Elon Musk’s Fremont Tesla factory currently employs around 10,000 people, yet the actual number of jobs created by that factory is probably at least double that figure. One of Elon Musk’s other companies – Neuralink, has around 100 staff. However, this doesn’t tell the whole story as the company uses specific batteries from Panasonic, which generates yet more job opportunities outside of the Neuralink payroll.

If it wasn’t for Elon’s entrepreneurial spirit, leading to the creation of PayPal, would the thousands of employees at eBay still have found a job? Whichever way you look at it, Elon Musk’s entrepreneurial spirit and drive has created lots of employment opportunities and economic growth.

You don’t have to be Elon Musk to know that starting a business can often feel like a 24/7 job. While there is nothing quite as rewarding as creating a successful company, it can also be incredibly stressful. Although Elon Musk’s goal in life is to “save humanity,” he sacrifices a lot to achieve his objective. He is quoted as saying that he works 100 hours a week, he has been divorced three times, and that he spends very little time with his children. While his goal of saving humanity is a worthy one, it’s unfortunate that it comes at such a price.

Many famous entrepreneurs have similar routines. Mark Zuckerberg, for example, is said to spend 16 hours a day in the Facebook office – throwing hard work at every problem appears to be the answer for some but what about the rest?

Work smarter not harder

While working all the hours possible seems to work for many, it doesn’t work for everyone. Entrepreneur Phil Drolet states in his 2014 Ted Talk that while he used to use more hours in the office to solve every problem, he soon ran himself into the ground. Ironically, he was running a business called The Feel Good Lifestyle, and he hated being out of sync with the ethos of his company.

He gave himself a 30-day “work less challenge,” which surprisingly led to his business’ most profitable month ever – by a significant margin. He says that working less gave him more mental clarity. Learning to delegate more and build efficient processes meant he could focus solely on the things that mattered most.

Scrapping this idea that the amount of success he had, correlated with the number of hours he worked, completely changed his life.

Outsourcing some administrative yet fundamental tasks such a phone answering can change your work schedule and the way you feel. With a seven-day free trial and a relatively short, three-month contractual period, you could look to track the results once you’ve signed up to Moneypenny’s out of hours answering service to see how it helps your business. 

To see how the service has helped your business, consider the qualitative and quantitative data gathered before and after using a 24/7 answering service. Look at how you feel, the number of ideas you have, and how productive you are before and after using an answering service. Check at the hard metrics, too, like your profit and your revenue.

Famous business leaders and self-employed millionaires such as Tim Ferris, Arianna Huffington, and billionaire Yvon Chouinard are advocates of the work smarter, not harder approaches. 

Flow state & distractions

To be a great artist, you don’t necessarily have to put in 16 hours a day. While practice is necessary, it is the quality of the end product that matters. Inspiration, creativity, and passion are difficult to cultivate by sitting in a chair at a desk all day. 

Distractions are also a potential hazard for artists and entrepreneurs alike. What if entrepreneurs focused less on the number of hours they put in at the office and focused more on producing the most inspiring and beautiful work possible?

While this comparison might not work for business owners in some industries, the ability to detach from the day-to-day routine can often help entrepreneurs to do more in less time.

Being in the zone, or “flow state,” has featured in sport psychology for decades. Coined by Hungarian-American psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi in 1975, flow state refers to the mental state of being fully immersed in the work at hand, with an energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment of the process. Flow state is associated with wellbeing as well as productivity. The experience of flow is described as “intrinsically rewarding” and “autotelic.”

Tips for entering flow state include:

  • Scheduling & prioritizing a to-do list the night before
  • Have a morning routine that is efficient & helps you get started on your to-do list
  • Minimize external distractions by removing them from your work environment e.g. cell phones
  • Listen to repetitive music with no lyrics – e.g. instrumental rock
  • Practice mindfulness
  • Do what you can to reduce any interruptions

A cell phone can be a major distraction for many business owners when focusing on the work at hand and entering into flow state. Tips on reducing this distraction include placing it in airplane mode and downloading a social media blocking app.

Investing in a phone answering service could remove your cell phone from your work-environment altogether. You can also reduce unnecessary interruptions from unwanted phone calls, for example, spam sales calls. The fact that you can afford to miss a call knowing your dedicated receptionist will answer it for you allows your subconscious mind to forget about the phone and focus on the work at hand.

Delight your customer

According to Warren Buffet, one of the world’s wealthiest men, working harder isn’t always the key to success. Instead, think about “how to delight your customer”.

With this advice front of mind, many entrepreneurs are arguably, going about the way they work in a less than optimal manner. For example, if you are a “solopreneur”, working for yourself, by yourself, are you providing the best customer experience possible by answering all your emails yourself?

In many instances, it can make sense to outsource specific business-administrative tasks so that you can focus on the work at hand. Offering an out of hours, 24/7 point of contact on the phone can be the foundation of an excellent level of customer service. Outsourcing can also help you focus on the core of the business, allowing you to deliver a better end product or service. 

By using a phone answering service, you can also detach to a certain extent to think about your business and look at the overall picture, rather than being tied up with the small things. It can be challenging to evaluate the operations of your business when you are constantly working within it.

Out of hours answering service

While a 24/7 answering service will not cure all of your entrepreneurial problems and issues, the service can certainly transform your working day.

The benefits of an out of hours answering service include:

  • Reduced number of interruptions
  • Enhanced professional image and brand
  • Improved customer service
  • A professional & consistent first impression for all your callers
  • Increased ability to focus on the work at hand
  • Peace of mind that calls are always taken care of
  • The ability to switch off all business communications at the end of the day & weekends
  • Reduced costs & overheads compared to a full-time receptionist
  • No receptionist training requirements
  • Never miss a business call – capture all inquiries
  • Scalability – grow your business while mitigating costs and risk
  • 24/7 availability

While business owners may still find it tempting to check emails and other business communications in the evenings and at the weekends, many of our out of hours clients report that they genuinely feel more focused and relaxed after signing up for the 24/7 service.

There are many reasons for this. Firstly, distractions such as unwanted phone calls are annoying and can cause unnecessary stress.

Research has shown that it takes 25 minutes to get back to focused-work after a single distraction with further research suggesting that people try and compensate for this by working faster:

“Our data suggests that people compensate for interruptions by working faster, but this comes at a price: experiencing more stress, higher frustration, time pressure, and effort.”

Quote source – “The Cost of Interrupted Work: More Speed and Stress”, Department of Informatics, University of California

Moneypenny’s Phone Answering Service

If you are considering outsourcing your phone calls, then you will be in good company. Some of our clients include multinational and global public companies, as well as local sole-traders. Whether you use Moneypenny on an overflow system or as the sole receptionist service for your business, Moneypenny has over 20 years of business communications experience and can tailor a service to meet your individual requirements.

Our data suggest that 1 in 3 business calls are missed. What’s more, the majority of callers will not leave a voicemail message and will go on to contact a competitor.

With a free trial and no lengthy contracts, why not give us a go? Click here to learn more about our Phone Answering Service.

 

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