It is always good to learn about your client's communication style.
Chris Ann Cleland shares her viewpoint in this re-post.
Some Thoughts on Texting,
Voice Mail and Cell Phones.
Some Thoughts on Texting, Voice Mail and Cell Phones
We all know that to be at maximum capacity to help serve our clients in the real estate industry, we need to be connected. I am one of those rare birds, however, that is not comfortable having my cell phone on me 24/7. I don't sleep with it by the bed. After all, I'm trying to get a good night's sleep. And I prefer not be awakened by work before I've had a chance to walk my way to the coffee maker and find true consciousness. I also don't have it on me while performing tasks like cooking a holiday meal, opening Christmas gifts or spending time with my husband or family. For those reasons, unless I'm working, out of the house or expecting an important call, my cell phone sits on my desk in my home office. Anyone who needs to get a hold of me has my home phone number which rings to six phones in the house.
Everyone has different levels of cell phone interaction and I don't think cell phone addicts get that. Here are some of my cell phone pet peeves for those I communicate with, and those that communicate with me:
PERPETUALLY FULL VOICE MAIL--This is topping my list for a reason. Two of the most important people in my life have this issue. My husband and my assistant have sentimental voice mails they do not want to delete that have their voice mail boxes at capacity. As a result, they prefer a text message. It drives me bonkers because when I out in the car and can't reach one of them, I have no way of getting a message to them unless I pull my car over and text them. Heaven forbid I have an urgent issue and no where to pull over. I've even offered to buy my assistant a cell phone for business purposes, but she thinks that's silly and is going to address saving her sentimental messages elsewhere. Having worked on my husband about that for years, I know that this is going to require adjusting on my end.
NON-TALKERS WHO PREFER TEXT--This is as bad as the first. They see you called, maybe you can't leave a message because of the first pet peeve and they text you back. Hello! I may be driving. Obviously, if I know you prefer text messages and didn't text you, there is a reason. Pick up your phone!
ALWAYS ANSWERS THE PHONE, ONLY TO BLOW YOU OFF--What's up with this one? There is someone I know that won't let a call go to voice mail. I've been having an intensely private, face to face conversation which may involve highly emotional subject matter, and she'll pick up the phone, tell the person she can't talk and then expect me to feel like what we were talking about is important. As a result, our friendship is practically non-existent. On the flip side, I've also been the call she takes while being rude to whoever she is with. When I get the, "I can't talk right now, can I call you back?" I wonder why the hell she didn't just let it go to voice mail.
CAN'T STOP LOOKING OR FIDDLING WITH THEIR PHONE--When you are out with someone and they seem to be lost in every little thing that happens on their phone, a person can feel like they are not important and are actually imposing on your time.
TEXT WITHOUT A RESPONSE--A text message without a response should not be relied upon for anything that would need a confirmation. This happened yesterday. I spent the morning doing household chores, phone on my desk. I had a 3pm meetibg with a gal who was picking up a piano at one of my listings. There had been an entire text exchange about letting the owner know when we'd be there, blah, blah, blah. The confirmed time was 3pm. Before popping in the shower around 1pm, I check my phone. There's a text that says she is on her way to the house. I texted her back that the owner wasn't expecting her until 3pm and I wasn't going to be there until 3pm, and got no response. I called and can't leave a voice mail because her voice mail was full. Ugh! Then my second pet peeve pops up and she texts back asking if there's a problem because she sees I called. ARE YOU SERIOUS? Did you read my text messages? Just because you have the ability to send an immediate message doesn't mean the person received it. And if you are sending a message changing a scheduled meeting time, you need to get confirmation from the party you are changing things up on.
THE COMPLAINER--We all know this person. They sleep with their phone by their bed and then get angry when someone calls then at midnight....but THEY ANSWER THE CALL. The complainer never realizes they are encouraging behavior like midnight calls because they must always answer their phone. If you are going to live by the motto that you will always answer your phone, spare the rest of us the complaints about calls that interrupt you at all hours and at inconvenient times. Your cell phone provider gave you voice mail for a reason.
These are my cell phone pet peeves. Have any you want to add to the list?
Chris Ann Cleland, Associate Broker-Licensed in VA
2014 Founders Club Member ($10 Million + in Production)
Top Producing Agent 2013 & 2011
Long & Foster REALTORS®, Manassas, VA
The opinions expressed in this post are those of Chris Ann Cleland, not those of Long & Foster REALTORS®.