Working Hours

I see too often company websites that state ‘call us anytime’ or ‘we’re available 24/7’. Every time it makes me cringe. Part of me wonders if these people really are super humans that will stick a smile on their faces when that client for next January calls them at 3am about the colour of chaircover bows or whether really it’s all just a sales pitch and they have no intention of actually answering that phone?
Now please don’t misunderstand me, being flexible and available and understanding to busy clients is a very important part of running a successful wedding planning business but that doesn’t mean that we’re doormats nor that we’re not entitled to a personal life. One of the things I find is that it’s better to be realistic and honest and setting boundaries and working hours is all part of that. If I promise something I generally deliver and if I say that I’m available 24/7, then I’d really need to be. And I’m not up for that;  my business is key to me but not to the detriment of my family, friends and general health. Setting working hours that clients are aware of is not a bad thing – it informs them that you’re a professional and deserve to be treated as such. After all they wouldn’t expect their bank manager or lawyer to be available for routine appointments  24/7.

So don’t feel bad (even in these harsh times where we are all working super hard) to switch the voicemail on and return calls within your working hours.

1 Comment

  1. Aimee Dunne on 12th September 2011 at 8:09 pm

    Very refreshing to read this when I’m still pretty new to being self-employed and trying to keep my clients happy! I’ve found when I start off by getting back to clients out of my normal hours or as soon as they contact me (when it’s not something urgent) then they continue to expect it; setting the boundaries is very important early on and I’ve learnt it the hard way. I’ve also just switched off my email on my iPhone as I found myself checking my email in bed at night…not helpful to a good nights sleep!

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