The one complaint I hear most about lawyers is that they are difficult to get a hold of – they don’t pick up their phones, they don’t reply to email, etc. This is especially frustrating when you are waiting on a time sensitive issue, and you do not know what is going on. The silence is deafening.
In my practice, I try to return phone calls and emails as promptly as I can. I also try to pick up my phone whenever possible. However, the nature of my work will often have me in meetings, with clients or other lawyers, and as such limit my opportunities to return calls or pick up the phone. A couple of options have worked well for my clients:
- Schedule an appointment. Once an appointment goes into my calendar, it blocks off that period of time for the phone call, a face to face meeting or a Skype call. This means that your appointment has the priority for that period of time.
- When asking for a return phone call, give me several options on best times to call you. For example, instead of saying ‘please call me back’, say ‘I can take a return call on Monday at 9am, Tuesday at 3:30pm, or Wednesday at 12:00 noon’. I can then take one of those times and schedule it in my calendar.
Good communication is the key to the successful completion of your file. What other options would work for you?