Are you taking your own calls ? | TruckMount Forums #1 Carpet Cleaning Forums

Are you taking your own calls ?

Aug 29, 2018
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Chris Westerman
Whose taking all of their calls and how? Or who has an office manager and is it worth it?
 

Jim Davisson

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Aug 23, 2016
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Depends on your business model and goals. I field all calls, schedule and work everyday. I also do all vehicle maintenance, repairs, upgrades, accounting, etc... I try to work 6 hours a day and spend 10 hours a week doing the other necessary duties. This is my sweet spot. I have no overhead, I have not paid on iron or marketing in 10+ years and am not seeking new meat ever, they come to me. I don't spend money to make money at this point in the game. I'm perfectly happy with being 100% self reliant. I'm not a good example.
 

WESTEX CLEANING

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Sep 2, 2019
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Michael Olson
My wife works from home and we use google voice as our office number she fields all incoming calls and schedules all appointments I have the google voice app on my phone and can text customers to let them know I’m on my way we use apples calendar for scheduling appointment my wife’s phone or our computer and my phone are all linked to same account so you updated one and it updates all pretty simple to use
 
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Aug 29, 2018
31
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Real Name
Chris Westerman
Depends on your business model and goals. I field all calls, schedule and work everyday. I also do all vehicle maintenance, repairs, upgrades, accounting, etc... I try to work 6 hours a day and spend 10 hours a week doing the other necessary duties. This is my sweet spot. I have no overhead, I have not paid on iron or marketing in 10+ years and am not seeking new meat ever, they come to me. I don't spend money to make money at this point in the game. I'm perfectly happy with being 100% self reliant. I'm not a good example.
Do your calls come into your mobile phone? Whats your setup for scheduling? Im only asking because I'm considering taking over the company I work for and the current owner is in the office taking calls (mostly missing calls) and I would like to see if I can run it without her in the picture.
 
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Jim Davisson

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Aug 23, 2016
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James Davisson
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Do your calls come into your mobile phone? Whats your setup for scheduling? Im only asking because I'm considering taking over the company I work for and the current owner is in the office taking calls (mostly missing calls) and I would like to see if I can run it without her in the picture.
Yes I use my cell phone and an appointment book, I keep it simple for us. If I was a multi van firm or going to be, paperless would be the only way to go.
 
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Mama Fen

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Jul 18, 2012
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I have no overhead, I have not paid on iron or marketing in 10+ years and am not seeking new meat ever, they come to me. I don't spend money to make money at this point in the game. I'm perfectly happy with being 100% self reliant. I'm not a good example.
I'd disagree with you there, Jim - I consider you to be a GREAT example of exactly what many of these guys want to be. You're captain of your own ship. Might not be the Sybaris, but it's plenty big for what you want to do, lol.
 

1ST CHOICE CLEANING

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I answer the phone myself as well as do everything else for the business. I spent 4 hours yesterday catching up on paperwork, hate doing it on Sundays but it sure is a good feeling to know it's all done and being able to actually see my desk again.
 

Spazznout

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Its not just about answering calls.
-Who is doing followup calls making sure the customer was happy with the service...can't get an honest answer and learn to make your business better if you don't, and customers will not tell you to your face what they did not like about their cleaning experience...a 3rd party call taker, oh they will unload if things are not perfect.
-who is doing your courtesy calls for the next days jobs
-who is mailing thank you cards
-who is doing the necessary data inputs into your customer database or crm software
-who is talking to the occasional customer you may not satisfy, it is and does and will happen to all of us....do you field that call while in your customers home?, send it to a voicemail??(ouch)
-who is reaching out to your customers from one year and two years ago to make sure they are keeping their carpets clean and you are the one doing the cleanings?


This is just a short list of stuff "someone who answers the phone" will do for your business.

Hiring an office assistant/manager is the best thing you can do for your business to give it a quick jolt of growth.

Most folks will not leave a message. If you are telling yourself they will or counting on those messages to grow your business, YOU ARE MAKING A MISTAKE>

The exception are folks like jim who do more regular account work and commercial accounts. Then answering the phone is no problem as you are NOT standing in the customers living room delivering on a cleaning experience for your current customer. Also you do not have a whole lot of new clients calling every day that you need to fill your schedule as your clients only need sold one time and then simply maintained.
 
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Jimbo Williams

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May 11, 2009
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precisionsteamcleaning.com
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Jim Williams
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I return calls between jobs unless I'm doing an empty. That way I can slow down and actually pay attention to what they are saying. When I started 15 years ago I would break my neck to catch every call when the phone rang. Now I'm mostly repeats and referrals and they will leave a message because they want me.

I have no desire to grow my business any more so missing a few price shoppers doesn't bother me. Staying booked 1-4 weeks out is more work than I need.
 
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Odin

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Mar 26, 2014
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terje brevik
most calls are local area codes from scammers
 
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mrotto

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Its not just about answering calls.
-Who is doing followup calls making sure the customer was happy with the service...can't get an honest answer and learn to make your business better if you don't, and customers will not tell you to your face what they did not like about their cleaning experience...a 3rd party call taker, oh they will unload if things are not perfect.
-who is doing your courtesy calls for the next days jobs
-who is mailing thank you cards
-who is doing the necessary data inputs into your customer database or crm software
-who is talking to the occasional customer you may not satisfy, it is and does and will happen to all of us....do you field that call while in your customers home?, send it to a voicemail??(ouch)
-who is reaching out to your customers from one year and two years ago to make sure they are keeping their carpets clean and you are the one doing the cleanings?


This is just a short list of stuff "someone who answers the phone" will do for your business.

Hiring an office assistant/manager is the best thing you can do for your business to give it a quick jolt of growth.

Most folks will not leave a message. If you are telling yourself they will or counting on those messages to grow your business, YOU ARE MAKING A MISTAKE>

The exception are folks like jim who do more regular account work and commercial accounts. Then answering the phone is no problem as you are NOT standing in the customers living room delivering on a cleaning experience for your current customer. Also you do not have a whole lot of new clients calling every day that you need to fill your schedule as your clients only need sold one time and then simply maintained.
I do everything you say. Its called TIME MANAGEMENT. for me and Jim you get to a point where you can do well on repeat and referral. heck, I have an answering machine and return calls just before and after the supper hour. NEVER take a call during the day. Busy tho.

And about the *growing your business* thing... been there, done that. Not for me thank you.
 
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rob allen

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No, but I make all the calls...like a boss.
 
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rob allen

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All kidding aside. My wife used to answer the phone as her cheerfulness won over even the pickiest client. Then as we grew we added receptionists. At that point we grew larger and more profitable.
 
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Art Kelley

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Feb 9, 2009
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I answer my own phone. I used to have someone take the calls and book the appointments, and that was nice and stress-free, like being an employee. But it’s pretty easy nowadays with a small cell phone and pocket calendar if you try to always answer when a customer calls before it goes to voicemail.
 

PistolPete

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Sep 28, 2014
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Peter Dymond
It really depends on your business model.
If you're trying to grow into a multi truck operation or an O/O starting out then you have to answer calls immediately.
The big problem today is spammers.
If I stopped to answer the phone everytime it rang I'd get nothing done.
I'm just looking for enough work to pay my bills.
I only do T&G though, so most of my customers are one time.
That said, currently I use Google voice in do not disturb setting.
The app notifies me of VM messages and I call back when I can focus on the call.
It weeds out all the spam, and most people leave a message.
Some don't and it's ok with me as I'm not stressed out by the phone.
Heck, most days I leave it in the truck while I'm working.
My VM message says I'm either driving or with a customer, so leave a message with name, job description and area of town.
Works fine for me.
I use a google calendar for scheduling because it's easy to use maps GPS directly from the calendar.
 

Art Kelley

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Feb 9, 2009
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Art Kelley
I get about a dozen spam calls a day. It takes me about .2 seconds to determine whether or not it is a customer or not, so about 10 seconds are wasted. The spam calls are useful simply to make sure my phone is easily accessed without fumbling, then I just hang up or talk dirty.