Tom Kane has a great post about leaving voicemail messages. The post covers some interesting things about voicemail, like tone and emotion. Honestly, I have never given those much thought when confronted with the beep. But that’s a good idea.
For productivity’s sake, I want to add a couple things to Tom’s post.
First, leave your name and number immediately at the beginning of the message. “Hello, this is John Doe at 222-333-4444.” Then repeat your name and number at the end of the message. This fits in line with the general rule of leaving your info twice. Plus, when the recipient has to replay your message to get your number down, he only has to play the first couple of seconds. Convenient, right?
The second thing, I’d add, especially for busy people like lawyers, is to make your message short. Before you call, try to sum up your call in a few words. What is it about? Make it like the subject line of an email. If you get the voicemail box, say your piece and get off. Try to keep it under 30 seconds, if at all possible.
Finally, always give the recipient the context of your call. If you’re calling your lawyer, you can just say “I’m calling in regard to matter X.” People are busy, and giving them a way to anchor your message into their list of to do items will increase the chances of a return call.
What do you think? Did Tom and I leave out anything crucial? Better yet, do you have any pet peeves about voicemail? Leave them in the comments or drop me a line.
[tags]legal andrew, tom kane, voicemail[/tags]
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