Monthly Archives: May 2016

Business Owners – 5 Ways to Reduce Your Stress

Thursday, May 26th, 2016

Nobody ever said that running a business would be easy, but it’s important to minimise any negative effects it may have on your health. Stress can effect the body and mind and even small steps to combat it can have a huge impact on your well-being. Read our 5 simple steps to reducing stress in your work life…

stressed out

Make a real effort to think more positively
It’s so easy to focus on the things that aren’t going to plan. Take time to remind yourself of the things that are going right, this can be within your business but also think wider, think about your family, your home, your friends. Make a list of all the positive things that are happening in your life and keep that list in clear view on your desk as a reminder to keep work challenges in perspective.

Refine your to-do list
It’s amazing how much we can build things up in our own mind, and in business never has the phrase ‘making a mountain out of a molehill’ been truer. It’s so easy to feel overwhelmed by the tasks and decisions that fall on your shoulders. Always make a to-do list and be precise about the task at hand, break each task down into its individual components, the likelihood is that the job is far easier to manage than you first anticipated.

Tidy your world
Everyone knows that organisation is key to living a stress free life, but this doesn’t just stop once you’ve bought a daily planner and tidied your desk. You need to think wider, look at the multiple environments you interact with in your working day, this could be spaces as small as the cupboard you get your breakfast cereal from, to the car you drive to work in. Don’t let the stress of disorganisation build unnecessarily; tidy, organise and streamline.

Act rather than react
We feel most stressed when things are spiraling out of our control. Look at an issue that is causing you stress and decide which aspects of the issue you could have control over and which are dependent on outside influences. You will now have minimised the size of the problem and refocused your attention to only the elements that you can directly effect.

Eliminate Interruptions
Frustration usually leads to a feeling of stress, we’ve all been pulled in multiple directions, desperately unable to manage our own time due to the ringing phone or a growing inbox. Eliminate interruptions by enforcing rules onto yourself and onto others. Inform colleagues that a closed office door means no interruptions, set aside strict hours throughout the day to deal with emails. Consider using a telephone answering service, freeing up your time to manage your business undisturbed, without ever leaving a call unanswered. To find out more information on how a telephone answering service could help you read our blog ’4 Ways a Call Answering Service Can Save You Time’ or visit our website.

5 Signs That You Need a Virtual Receptionist

Saturday, May 14th, 2016

Do you feel you need some help but not sure if a virtual receptionist is the right choice for you? Read our top 5 signs that you need a virtual receptionist.

Stressed Morning Sign

1) You’re unable to take a holiday

With a limited team or perhaps even no team at all, the idea of taking a holiday might feel like an impossible dream. Who will answer your calls, who will follow up on leads? These questions might seem unanswerable, but a virtual receptionist can be there to support you whenever you need it, seamlessly answering your calls as if part of your in-house team.

2) You’re answering customer calls on your days off, in the evenings, in the mornings, heck you can’t escape them!

Your customers don’t care if it’s your daughter’s birthday, or you’re on a romantic meal out with your wife, and every call matters, not just from the point of view of prospective business but also for impeccable customer service. Each call should be dealt with professionally, not rushing to get your caller off the phone or desperately trying to find a quiet spot to take the call away from the background noise of your children’s party or a busy restaurant; is that really the environment to be dealing with what could potentially be your next big deal? A virtual receptionist is there for when you need it, calls can be diverted when you need to leave the office and you can feel reassured that calls are being dealt with professionally in your absence.

3) You can’t afford a receptionist

You have 101 jobs that need doing, you need to grow your business but still you’re a slave to the ringing phone. What you need is some help, someone to answer your calls, take messages, deal with your diary and free up some of your time – the solution however is expensive. The average wage for a full-time receptionist is £17,000 not to mention the inconvenience of training, holiday leave and sickness. A virtual receptionist is a far cheaper option with the ability to choose a price plan to suit your call volume. There are no concerns of staff sickness or leave, you can feel assured that your calls will always be answered by fully trained and professional call agents whenever you need them.

4) You’re having to give your mobile number and/or  home land-line number to customers

As a small business there may seem no alternative but to give out your mobile number, but how professional does this look if it’s the only number for customers to call you on? It gives a very clear message that you do not run your business from an office, and it could make customers question the size and reputability of your business. There’s nothing wrong with running your business from home, it’s how the majority of businesses start, but giving out your home land-line number may feel like a breach of your own privacy and calls wont be answered professionally with your company name. Worse still, unanswered calls will reach your personal answering machine with its rather informal and over friendly “you’ve reached the Smith family, you know what to do after the beep!” A virtual receptionist company can provide you with a land-line number which you can either then direct to your mobile or have answered by your virtual receptionists, disguising the fact that you work from home. See our blog ‘A Virtual Address and Virtual Phone Number: The Easy Way to Disguise That You Work From Home’

5) Missing customer calls or they’re getting the engaged tone.

There’s nothing worse for your business than missing customer calls, the next caller really could be your biggest client and not answering calls from your existing client base doesn’t do much for your customer service. You may feel able to answer your incoming calls, but how many callers are reaching an engaged tone while you offer great service to a customer already on the line? Using a virtual receptionist means that multiple calls can all be answered by call agents.

Find out more about how we can help you and your business by visiting our website.

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