05 Dec

Response time

I am a firm believer that with few exceptions people should respond to all emails and phone calls within 48 hours. At the very least, take two seconds to acknowledge receipt of the correspondence. A one line email suffices. If you don’t respond to your colleagues, clients and for non-profits, your donors  and volunteers, in real-time, you loose credibility and run the risk of having your tardiness and lack of responsiveness become more noteworthy than your content.

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There are 4 comments on this post.

  1. Ina-Lee

    December 5, 2009

    I have stayed on AOL much longer than its usefulness because of the option to learn that my email was received and opened. We do what we have to do.

    • Nanette Fridman

      December 5, 2009

      Thanks Ina-Lee for your comment. It is a nice feature with aol that you can see if your email has been received and/or opened. In other email systems, this requires the sender to request a return receipt. Personally, if the recipient must take action to allow the return receipt to be sent, I am judicious when I use this function.

  2. Doug

    December 5, 2009

    There’s also another important reason — and that is to have an audit trail. I have a difficult client I work with… one that is notorious for “forgetting” discussions. I make sure I reply via email to ALL emails I receive, and followup with emails to ALL discussions. I store these emails in a special Outlook .pst in case I ever need to retrieve them (both received and sent). There have been several instances where re-forwarding the client these emails has been very useful in squashing further negotiation on already agreed-upon decisions.

    • Nanette Fridman

      December 5, 2009

      Thanks Doug for your comment. I absolutely agree that is it good business practice and client management not only to be responsive in real-time but also to keep all client emails.

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