To give or not to give

July 30, 2018


Would you share your direct number with a customer?


Many customer-facing employees, managers, and probably some back-office employees, like workshop managers, share their mobile numbers with customers (personal or work numbers).Many companies make sure it is mentioned on the business card so that customers can reach them at any time to get support. Sometimes customers even ask for a personal number if only the work number was mentioned, and we so proudly write it on the business card.

How many of you have received phone calls at inappropriate times? Forgive me in advance for giving Automotive related examples, as I prefer to only share my own experience. During toilet breaks? Imagine you are in a toilet stall and you hear someone going:” Hello, hello?” and you think they might need help only to discover they are actually answering a customer call about getting a better price. You get calls during dinner with family and you get that look from your other half. Even at midnight, that time when you are releasing some steam and you get a call from a customer who decided to change the colour of a car he ordered a few months back, and the list goes on.

Two questions arise:
1-Why did you receive those calls?
2-Why did you answer?

The reason for receiving the calls would most probably be because the customer trusts you, or has, what he considers to be, a problem, and wants to reach out by all means. The reason for you answering the call would most probably be that you need to achieve your targets at the end of the month and that you probably like this customer.

As you can see, this is done with all good intentions to make sure that the customer is served immediately with the least amount of inconvenience and that the employee earned his living which I totally agree with. However, let us look at the impact of sharing a direct phone number with customers.

Taking a common scenario where a customer calls a sales consultant or service advisor, and just to make it simple, let us consider the call was done during working hours.

You could have an automatic reply message, or, you could excuse yourself, pick the call up, and let them know you will call back. But how many times could you possibly do that without causing dissatisfaction (especially when you get 20-30 calls per hour)?

The solution exists, it has been tried out and tested successfully.We will be proposing it in future posts, until then, feel free to share your thoughts and experiences.

To know the answer click here