- Should You Force Yourself to Answer?
- What to Do If You Hate Talking on the Phone
- How a Virtual Receptionist Can Help
Q: Should I force myself to answer my business phone if I hate talking on the phone?
A: Missing business calls is bad for business. But if you hate talking on the phone, forcing yourself to answer calls may be doing your business more harm than good. This guide offers some solutions, including delegating the task to a virtual receptionist.
If you’ve started your own small business, chances are you’ve done so because you’re passionate about your business idea.
Maybe you had an original concept you wanted to bring into the world, or maybe you just found something you love doing and you want to do it on your own.
Regardless, you likely launched your business so that you could put something meaningful into the world.
Upon entering into the business world, you probably realized there’s a lot more to it than just providing your goods or services.
Maybe you hate talking on the phone but suddenly found yourself neck-deep in business calls. Maybe you’ve had to learn accounting and marketing practices.
While knowing how to run your business on all fronts is a good idea, doing everything yourself isn’t sustainable.
Constantly having to perform multiple tasks is draining. It can hold you back from bringing your best to your business.
Among the most common examples is answering business calls. If you hate talking on the business phone, white-knuckling it through endless phone conversations may be doing more harm than good.
Why Your Business Phone Matters
With the proliferation of online businesses, you need every advantage you can get to rise above the competition. Your business phone is a critical opportunity to do so.
We live in an age of quick, text-based communication. While this is certainly convenient, it lacks the personal touch that makes people feel connected on an emotional level.
When a customer calls your business with a question, having a friendly, attentive conversation can be the deciding factor in their buying decision.
Additionally, customer service is critical in growing your business online. Reviews play a major role in helping your business draw in new customers.
An outstanding phone experience means callers are more likely to leave your business a positive review, helping convince future consumers to purchase from you.
It isn’t just customers though. Professional connections may call your phone to schedule meetings or inquire about business opportunities.
Showing up for these conversations in a professional and thought-out manner encourages them to work with you. These opportunities can bring your business to new markets and establish long-term partnerships.
All of this hinges on how your business presents itself over the phone.
Why Some People Hate Talking on the Phone
Many people hate talking on the phone. Phone anxiety is a prevalent phenomenon, especially among those with anxiety disorders.
Part of this can be explained by general social anxiety. After all, phone calls are a form of social interaction.
Just as many people get anxious in social situations, a number of people get nervous talking on the phone.
This problem is often hidden due to the internet and the introduction of text-based communication. Today, it’s far more common to communicate via texts or emails than to make calls.
Texts allow people to respond without the pressure of a person on the other line. They can be answered when it’s convenient and without the social dynamics that can make someone anxious.
This might be why only 19% of Americans answer calls from unknown numbers. People want to feel safe and certain before engaging in a conversation. Text-based communication allows them to do so.
Add to that the pandemic’s impact on social interaction and it’s no wonder so many people hate talking on the phone.
How Forcing Yourself To Answer Your Phone Impacts You
All that said, small business owners often feel they have to answer, even if they hate talking on the phone at work.
Talking to customers on the phone may seem like a good idea (and it’s definitely better than just ignoring calls), but forcing yourself to handle your business phones may be hurting you more than you realize.
For starters, your caller may not receive the customer service they should. If you are anxious or irritated when you answer the phone, you’re far less inclined to engage with your caller.
You may be distracted by your frustration or fear, or you may be thinking about how badly you want the call to end.
You may do your best to mask these things, but they often seep into the conversation. Your tone may appear slightly unfriendly, or you may rush through the call.
In the end, this leaves your caller feeling confused or unheard. They may feel you don’t really care about them.
These feelings drive people away from your business, slowing your growth and potentially leading to negative reviews online.
Your customers aren’t the only ones who suffer though. If talking on the phone makes you anxious or drained, you may be driving yourself into an episode of burnout.
Having to constantly summon up the energy to answer calls leaves you tired. You’ll have less creativity and drive for the rest of your work and you may even reconsider your decision to start your business in the first place.
What to Do If You Hate Talking on the Phone
If you’ve been answering business calls and hating it, you need to find a way to delegate the task to someone else.
Many small businesses think the only answer is to hire a receptionist. While that would solve the problem, it’s often financially unfeasible for new businesses to pay a full-time employee.
Luckily, there’s a modern solution that provides all the benefits of a professional receptionist in an affordable and convenient package. This is the virtual receptionist.
A virtual receptionist is a subscription-based plan that connects your business phone to a receptionist in a call center. The receptionist handles all incoming calls without you having to hire a full-time employee, keeping your overhead low and allowing you to continue operating remotely.
How a Virtual Receptionist Helps
Virtual receptionists can be particularly helpful for those who hate talking on the phone. Here’s how they help you with this vital component of your business.
Provides a Better Customer Experience
If you hate talking on the phone, a virtual receptionist can provide friendly efficiency for your callers and help to build a positive brand image.
Virtual receptionists are professionally trained to provide exceptional customer service. They answer each of your calls in a helpful manner and provide attentive care to your callers.
When callers are greeted warmly and professionally and feel that they are valued, they are far more likely to purchase from you.
Strong customer service also encourages your callers to spread the word about your business, both online and in person.
Over time this increases your revenue and helps your business thrive.
Reduces Your Stress
A virtual receptionist can also help you achieve a better work-life balance and sense of well-being.
If you hate talking to customers on the phone, consistently answering calls creates a lot of unnecessary stress. Not only is this bad for you personally, but it reduces your creativity and efficiency at work.
When you delegate your business phone to a virtual receptionist, you free up your energy to focus on the parts of your business that matter most to you.
Allows You to Respond on Your Time
As the business owner, some calls are unavoidable. Certain matters require your attention and can’t be handled by someone else.
In these instances, you can reduce the stressfulness of calls by having the chance to prepare, and then make the call when you feel ready.
A virtual receptionist allows you to do just that. They can pass along messages in a convenient manner, allowing you time to prepare for important calls without being blindsided.
Your business phone is important for your success.
That said, if you hate talking on the phone, you don’t have to suffer through it. A virtual receptionist can provide top-tier customer service while freeing you from the stress of doing something you dislike.
If you’re curious about virtual receptionists, you can explore our live receptionist plans here. Our receptionists will handle your business phone so you can focus on the parts of your business you’re passionate about.