Dancers Anonymous > What happened to business hours??

Discussion in 'Dancers Anonymous' started by Larinda McRaven, Sep 1, 2013.

  1. Dots

    Dots Active Member

    If I may suggest a different way of thinking: providing a service like instant messaging in all its forms (text, email, Facebook) without getting paid for it is like a bringing free cookies to work. If you do it once in a blue moon, great! People will appreciate you for it. If you do it every day, people start taking it for granted and get miffed when you stop bringing them (and you'd better bring enough for everyone!).

    My notary has a very practical way of doing things: she sets very clear boundaries. When you call, she rarely picks up and her message clearly says that she answers her messages during weekday evenings. Boundaries are clearly set and respected, so people know what to expect and as long as her job is done correctly then they don’t get upset.

    I know and respect that some professions require a deeper level of commitment, but in my case, setting clear boundaries and not making myself available 24/7 has satisfied my clients, employers, family and friends because I set clear boundaries. So it’s doable.

    Then again, I’m in IT and I don’t have a Facebook or twitter account… I’m weird like that :p
    danceronice and Hedwaite like this.
  2. Hedwaite

    Hedwaite Well-Known Member

    Basically, we just don't want to hurt anybody's feelings by making them feel ignored, I get that, but once upon a time, people understood that, and the respect went both ways- they didn't want to disrespect our time as the people they pay for something, by taking something (time, effort) for which they didn't pay. Now, you have self-entitled people who say "I pay you XX per hour, you BETTER be bla bla bla". Clear, up front boundaries are good. Very, very good.
  3. FancyFeet

    FancyFeet Well-Known Member

    My phone is not that cool :(
  4. madmaximus

    madmaximus Well-Known Member

    A client once called at 2AM to ask how to go to HER website---basically didn't know how to type the URL on a browser.

    middy likes this.
  5. DL

    DL Well-Known Member

    It was your fault for not setting her up with a bookmark in advance.
    madmaximus, Joe and Larinda McRaven like this.
  6. Joe

    Joe Well-Known Member

    She prolly wouldn't know where the bookmark is... :rolleyes:
    madmaximus and stash like this.
  7. Joe

    Joe Well-Known Member

    Another option: you can get an 800 number that is forwarded to your phone. It's maybe $4-5/month. Calls to that number get forwarded to your phone; if you don't answer, they can leave a message and you get an e-mail with the message in a WAV file. If you like, you can set your ringtone for the 800 number (calls appear on your phone as being from the 800 number) to silent. So official business calls are silent, while personal, potential emergency calls are audible.
  8. DL

    DL Well-Known Member

    You have to pay for 800 calls you receive. Get a 900 number instead.
  9. Indiana_Jay

    Indiana_Jay Active Member

    Joe might be referring to services like RingCentral, which unlike Google Voice are not free but they're also far more configurable. RingCentral offers various plans at various prices, including toll-free and local phone numbers. Two of my clients use RingCentral to make it appear as if their staff members are all centrally located, when in fact, they all telecommute from various parts of the country.

    A search for "virtual phone" will turn up companies like RingCentral and its competitors.
  10. Hedwaite

    Hedwaite Well-Known Member

    I like Google Voice so far. Each time I upgrade phones, something happens so that my voicemail doesn't cooperate with the transition, but Google Voice is always there for whatever.
  11. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    I don't mind receiving the calls or texts or emails. I mind the presumption that I am going to drop what I am doing on a Saturday night to attend to someones business request. Years ago I even received a phone call from a DFer, at 1:30 am... he was calling to complain about another DFer and wanted me to step in to defend him... He called because he saw me online. Who does that???

    My husband excused himself from a house party we were attending, to take a phone call at 10:30 pm on a Friday. I waited about a half hour before I went to look for him. I walked in and announced quite loudly... "Is this an emergency phone call? Cause if not... it can wait until daylight. Please hang up."

    He just can't not answer the phone. I however can ignore a phone call or email for a whole day or two until I have time to answer.

    But adding another number or different email address won't stop people from expecting us to work outside of business hours... and then chastising us when we don't.
  12. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    I read a brilliant article in Hemisphere, the United Airlines magazine. I will see if I can dig it up online and share it here.
  13. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

  14. Indiana_Jay

    Indiana_Jay Active Member

    Which takes us back to my earlier point: It's all about managing expectations (and handling customers whose unreasonable expectations are not met). Tell them how you will behave and behave that way consistently. When people complain that you behaved as you said you would, remind them of what you said. And remind them again and again, as necessary.
    ChaChaMama, Dots and Larinda McRaven like this.
  15. twnkltoz

    twnkltoz Well-Known Member

    ...which is not so easy with people who aren't your customers.

    It all comes back to the fact that yes there are a few things we can do to manage this problem, but I don't think that's entirely the point here. The point here is, people who expect immediate answers during non-business hours when it's not an emergency and that is not the expected behavior in that industry are inconsiderate @$$hats.
  16. Indiana_Jay

    Indiana_Jay Active Member

    No argument here. Often, however, we can modify the behavior of even "inconsiderate @$$hats" through persistent consistency.
  17. madmaximus

    madmaximus Well-Known Member


    I kinda knew I was in for a long conversation when she asked what a browser was, and how to get one.

    (kinda reminds me of the Dilbert cartoon where Dilbert asks pointy-hair manager (sarcastically) what COLOR he wanted the database to be---and pointy-hair answers "mauve".)

    twnkltoz likes this.
  18. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    Sounds like my Mother.
    Mr 4 styles likes this.
  19. debmc

    debmc Well-Known Member

    It does get often do you see people gathered together, but checking their texts, messages and FB, rather than enjoying the present moment company? Video taping a concert instead of enjoying the concert? Taking a ton of pictures of themselves at an event, rather than enjoying the event?
    middy and Hedwaite like this.
  20. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    this is why we never owned a video camera, never had our wedding or kid's births and other events video-ed..we lived it
    Hedwaite likes this.

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