2 of 6 Building Trust in Business: Be Responsive
Responsiveness is the foundation of trust. It’s an easy way to demonstrate how much you respect the people you’re doing business with. You would think our ‘always on’ culture would support more responsiveness in business, but it can be quite the opposite - for a few reasons:
📤 While forms of communication (email, texting, chat applications, audio messages, etc.) have increased, respect for communication urgency has decreased. Abundance waters down urgency. Knowing a response can be sent in a matter of seconds vs. needing a stamp and 5 days in the mail makes it easier to put off.
📤 More connections = more distractions. Trying to text someone back and a call comes in, responding to an email and a coworker pops in to your open office space, or having a conversation and your phone is vibrating in your pocket.
A few things you can do to improve responsiveness while keeping boundaries:
✔️ Start using ‘Do Not Disturb’ on your phone to limit the chance of distraction during important conversations or while you’re responding to emails or other forms of communication.
✔️ Turn off app notifications unless absolutely necessary.
✔️ Always confirm receipt of communication, even if you don’t have an answer.
✔️ Schedule a ‘response window’ 1-3x/day. Pick a few set times throughout the day that you solely respond to communications. And block this time on your calendar as if it’s a meeting to limit random interruptions.
✔️ Use an auto-response on email and voicemail. If you’re only going to respond to communication at certain times throughout the day, set those expectations for people you’re interacting with from the start. Let them know the windows you respond in so they know not to expect an immediate response.
✔️ Keep some boundaries! If you respond to communication at all hours of the day and on the weekends, you are setting a precedent for yourself. Figure out when it’s appropriate to shut down your computer and phone, then hold strong and turn on those auto-responses.