Monthly Archives: November 2011

Minding your Manners – with a Virtual Receptionist.

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

The National Campaign for Courtesy is advising people on mobile phones to be courteous in public places. They have issued a courtesy code which includes advice such as speaking quietly when on a mobile in public places and switching off the sound when playing games.

National Chairman of the Campaign for Courtesy, Peter Foot, commented:

“When you’re out and about in places such as theatres, restaurants, trains and tubes, libraries and art galleries it’s important to respect others when using mobile phones. Continued reading >

Drive Safely – with a Virtual Receptionist.

Friday, November 18th, 2011

A new campaign has been launched this week encouraging drivers to switch off their mobile phones.

The campaign – by breakdown cover company GEM Motoring Assist – urges drivers to switch off their mobile phones completely before setting out on a journey.

GEM say that research shows that in recent years a record number of drivers in the UK were prosecuted for using a mobile phone while driving, despite the introduction of a law in 2003 which banned drivers from using mobile phones behind the wheel without a valid hands free kit.

Department for Transport official statistics show that you are four times more likely to have an accident if you use your mobile phone while driving. Mobile phone users also have significantly worse reaction times than people driving after drinking alcohol at the legal limit.

Penalties for improper use of mobile phones while driving include a minimum of three penalty points, plus fines. And although it is of course perfectly legal to use a hands free phone in the car, it is still a significant distraction, and should you be unlucky enough to be involved in an accident could be a factor in whether or not you are charged with careless or dangerous driving, or ‘failing to have proper control of a vehicle’.

Driving remains one of the most dangerous work activities that most people do. Around one hundred and fifty people are killed or seriously injured every week in crashes involving someone who was using the road for work purposes.

Obviously there are many good reasons for employees and business people who travel frequently to have a mobile phone, both for keeping in touch with the office and also for safety reasons. But why risk your livelihood and possibly even your life by concentrating on your telephone instead of your driving?

With telephone answering services from CSnotepad you and your staff can switch off your mobile phones and travel safely without ever worrying about missed calls. Our highly trained virtual receptionists will answer calls in your company name and guarantee that your customers’ calls are always answered, wherever you are.

Start Planning for Winter with a Virtual Receptionist.

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

Business support group The Forum of Private Business has said that small firms should start planning for winter now.

Smaller businesses are particularly vulnerable to problems caused by the onset of bad weather and should ensure that business premises are fully weather proofed, properly insured and that plans are in place in case staff are unable to get to into work during severe weather.

The Arctic weather conditions experienced over the last two winters caused havoc for large numbers of UK businesses, with many staff simply unable to make the journey into their place of work. For some companies, lack of deliveries or heating and power failures meant that premises had to be closed regardless of staff availability. For many employees, the closure of schools due to adverse weather conditions made it impossible for them to attend work regardless.

Jane Bennett, Head of Campaigns for FPB commented:

“The past few winters have demonstrated just how susceptible the UK is to extreme weather, and the cost to business quickly runs into millions. When infrastructure grinds to a halt staff can’t get in to work, and that’s a body blow which hits small firms with fewer staff the hardest.

She went on to advise that businesses start to make their winter contingency plans now, rather than wait until the last minute to react.

With virtual receptionist services from CSnotepad you can be fully prepared for business disruption caused by severe weather conditions. We can provide a Pay As You Go Telephone Answering Service which means that if your receptionist can’t make it in to the office because of wintry weather, your phone calls won’t be missed, and your customers won’t go elsewhere.

Sign up to one of our Monthly Telephone Answering Plans and we can even provide a Call Patching service. Telephone calls can put through to home or mobile telephone numbers by our virtual receptionists, meaning that your staff can work, and your customers can always reach someone, whatever the weather.

Time Management: the CSnotepad 5 Point Plan.

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

The clocks have gone back and most of us enjoyed an extra hour of free time. Sometimes we all wish for a couple of extra hours in the day. But if this is a regular occurrence for you, you may need to work on your time management.

Time management is an essential tool for keeping work levels under control, achieving goals and minimising stress levels.

In theory it’s simple – create a schedule of priorities, and work on the highest priority task first. Unfortunately in the real world it isn’t always that easy.

Here’s our quick 5 point plan to help you manage your time more effectively – without taking up very much of it:

1. Set Goals.

First things first, decide what you want to do with your time. Set goals. Once you know where you’re going you can work out the quickest way to get there. Make the effort now to set clear, achievable goals and then work backwards from them.

2. Priorities, priorities!

Once you know what your goals are, decide exactly what you need to do to achieve them. Then list all of the other daily tasks that you need to do too. List all of these in order of importance. In other words, what would be the consequences if you didn’t do something? This should make it easier to prioritise. It’s important to not just make a generic ‘To-do’ list. You’ll be overwhelmed and probably won’t do any of it.

3. Scheduling.

So you have a list. You know what’s important. Now you need to make sure that you have the time set aside to complete the things that need to be done first. Avoid procrastinating. Putting things off until later will leave you firmly back at square one, overwhelmed and short of time.

4. Be Realistic

If you know something takes two days, don’t try and finish it in one. If you need help to complete a project, ask for it. If you know you work best in the morning, don’t start your most important project at 5pm. Avoid distractions where possible. Allow for interruptions in your schedule and plan accordingly.

5. Managing Interruptions

Interruptions are a fact of life. It’s how you deal with them that makes the difference. Try the two minute rule. Allow yourself two minutes to deal with anything urgent that crops up and no more. Then return to the task in hand. If you’re really up against a deadline, switch off email notifications and check them once an hour (or less). Get someone else to act as receptionist and screen your calls.

With telephone answering services from CSnotepad you can manage your time more effectively.
Let our Virtual Receptionists help you to get the job done.

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