How To: Setting up a professional voicemail to increase efficiency

More than often I get voicemail messages with just ”Hi, this is John Doe, please call me back”. If I am lucky the person will also leave a phone number for me to call back, but I will still not have any idea of what is the matter he wants to discuss. Turning off the voicemail is not an option, but by tweaking the voicemail I have been able to be more efficient and get great response from my clients as well.

The Message

No one wants to hear a long voicemail message when calling, so the key is to keep it short but still informative and guiding. To long message will increase the risk of people simply hanging up which could result in you losing business or missing out vital information.

The message should of course include the two fundamentals: your name and your company name, but don’t stop there. Try to get the person to tell you a little about what they want to discuss as well as how they prefer that you get back to them. If you are on vacation or will not be able to return the call within a day or two, it could be a great idea to include that in your message as well.

Since I prefer to be prepared when talking to clients, business partners or even family members, I have decided to include my e-mail as an alternate way to contact me. Here is my outgoing message:

Hi. You’ve reached the voicemail of Ola Rynge at The Rynge Group. I’m currently unavailable at the moment, but please send an e-mail to ola dot rynge at rynge dot com with a short description of the matter you like to discuss with me. Don’t forget to include your phone number if you want me to call you back.

Alternatively, please leave a brief message after the tone with your name, company name and phone number and I will get back to you as soon as I am available. Thank you.

Make sure that you retrieve your voicemails every couple of days, if not daily, even if away on a trip so that you do not disappoint the caller, since they will probably be expecting a prompt response from you.

By following these tips, you will find that voicemail can be a highly efficient tool instead of the burden people often perceive it to be.

Please share your outgoing messages in the comment section.

– Ola Rynge

Ola Rynge is the CEO of The Rynge Group and author of the The Rynge Blog, which focuses on Personal Branding as a personal development tool and how it can be be used to create more opportunities for entrepreneurs.
Connect with Ola on Twitter @rynge.

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