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Manage: Professional Phone Tips
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When answering the telephone:

The person who answers the telephone in the business represents the company’s image. Anyone who answers the phone should always do so in the most professional mannar. If a message is taken, make sure to get the full name of the caller, his/her phone number, the reason for calling and the best time to return the call. An example of what can be said:

“Thank you for calling (name of company) this is (name of employee) how may I help you?”

When leaving a message:

  • Always speak slowly and clearly when leaving a message
  • Say the phone number with pause between the numbers
  • Speak loud enough so the message can be heard
  • Always leave your name, phone number, a brief reason why you called and the time you called and the best time to call back
  • Always make it easy for people to reach you or the best time to call.
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After playing telephone tag a few times and when you finally have the person on the phone, take notes about what the conversation is about so that you can follow up in the future. Get an email address, as well, to put in your data base. Oftentimes, email is an easier way to communicate as people today are so busy.

Julie Brander - Business Mentor, SCORE New Haven
Julie has been a SCORE volunteer since 1997. She has 20 years of experience in business, starting a manufacturing, wholesale and retail jewelry company. After selling her business, she dedicated herself to helping other entrepreneurs start and expand their business.
www.scorenewhaven.com | @juliebrander | More from Julie

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Manage: Give Thanks, Give Back
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Support Your Community & Boost Your Biz

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, businesses can show their appreciation to their communities by giving back and garnering free publicity in the process. Big corporations have long recognized the advantages of giving back.  Business like Target, Tom’s Shoes, Harpo and Microsoft are very vocal about their contributions to the local and international community. It shows their committment to the people and community that supports them. It also helps to build a brand associated with altruism and philantropy.

Small Biz Guide to Giving Back

Find out what matters most to your customers and focus your efforts.
For example, Target donates a part of their profits to schools because a large percentage of their target market are families with school-aged children. To make the best impact, focus on the issues that matter to your client base.

Decide what method works best for your business.
There are many ways to contribute. Pizza Hut offers free pizzas to students who read a certain number of books. Disney offers a free pass to indivuals who volunteer with an affiliated organization. Apple offers product discounts to students and teachers. These are just a few examples of how your business might give back.

Spread the word.
Once your program is up and running, let the public know. Put up information on your web site, place flyers in your store and update your online networks (Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter). Most importantly, pitch the story to your local media outlets. Reporters are always looking for human interest stories. Also, contact organizations that would benefit directly from your program. Ask them to include your info in their publications and on their web sites. This is a great way to get free PR and boost your business. 
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Here are a few articles from SCORE to jump start the process.

Christine Banning, SCORE
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SCORE
For 50 years, SCORE has helped aspiring and current small business owners achieve their dreams. Through a network of over 11,000 volunteer business mentors in 340+ chapters across the country, SCORE connects decades of business experience and knowledge with those who can best use it.
www.SCORE.org | Facebook | @SCOREmentors | More from SCORE

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