As we all know these days the office is very busy environment with many demands on time. While responding to e-mails or being on the phone are necessary tasks, they can eat away your time and before you know it you don’t have time to do more important things. They can also test your time management skills and your resolve. Here are four ways of being more efficient on the phone:
- Protect your time for when you need to be focused: try to identify when you work best e.g. 8 AM and then block out two hours, where you don’t take calls. Of course, this may not be possible as this may be the only time other people can call you. After having spent focusing on more important matters it might be a nice change of pace to take some phone calls.
- Don’t schedule long calls: Calendars are usually in 30 to 60 minutes blocks but it doesn’t mean phone calls need to be that long. Try to keep phone calls to 15 to 20 minutes in length. This requires discipline to know what you want to say or ask your phone correspondent. If you impart or get all information necessary, it is possible to politely end the conversation. It is far easier and manageable to schedule 20 minutes of phone calls rather than an hour.
- Suggest limited time Windows: Don’t schedule phone calls two weeks in advance as that can be overwhelming. Give people two options for when the phone call can take place. The longer the timeframe before the phone calls take place, the less likely they are to happen because something will inevitably crop up for one of the parties. Shorter time frames will ensure that phone calls happen
- Always aim to be the one dialling: This could be easy for a punctual person. Why waste time waiting to call someone at 1:05 when you can phone them at 1 PM? By being the person who initiates the call, it is possible to avoid this dead time and as a consequence make better use of your time.
Do you schedule phone calls and meetings efficiently? Sharpen your time management skills here