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Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by mtdman, Feb 24, 2005.

  1. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    Does anyone have a cell phone for their personal stuff and one for business calls? My business number is just a straight to voicemail phone #. You call it, it doesn't ring anywhere it just goes right to voicemail and you leave a message. I've had that number since 1997, and we got it done that way because at the time cell phones were expensive and neither my former partner and I lived in a static home. We both floated from apt to apt for a while, and I wanted a business number that would stay the same no matter where we lived.

    So anyways, I've been thinking about changing the # to a cell phone now that we can port the numbers. I already called and checked that it can be ported no problem. The business number is already in the phone book advertising this year and it's an established # I'd like to keep. But I would still like to keep my personal cell #. Just seems like a waste to have 2 cell phones though.

    Any thoughts?

  2. scottt

    scottt LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 269

    I use my cell phone for personal and business use. It's a great way to save money. I just started another business and go a land line for it, and it's much better. However I never had any problems with the cell, just use it if you need to save money.
  3. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,858

    I use my cell phone for business and personal too. works out great since it's the business number i just write the whole bill off on my taxes! I guess it depends on the size of your business... I don't really get more than a call or 2 a day for business so it's not really intrusive on my life. Now if i was getting a few dozen I'd consider going a different route, like maybe just letting voice mail take care of it by having the phone off unless it's within certian business hours or I'm running equipment and just can't answer it. I think getting a human being that answers the phone on the first try is a big selling point to new customers. If it goes to a voicemail, if it's a new client, there's the potentiol they will hang up and go to the next number in the book.
  4. Lux Lawn

    Lux Lawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,267

    It does seem like a waste to have two cell phones but thats what I did I just got back from getting my second phone.I got it for a couple of reasons 1.so one of my employees plowing for me can have a phone when he is on the road. 2. I do not give my customers my personal cell phone number there is nothing worse then them calling you when you are out...If they have two numbers to call and you don't answer the business phone they are going to hang up and call you cell phone...That is not something I want when i'm with my wife or friends.I'm not sure if I am going to make my second phone a business cell or not if I do and they call on that then fine if I am out I will leave it at home or in the truck.
  5. Groundcover Solutions

    Groundcover Solutions LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,254

    This is what I do...
    i have a land line plus a fax line at my shop. At this time I can't afforded to keep a person there to answer the phones and such hopefully one day I will. But I like the land line because in my area, at least, you know the cell numbers when you see then... Such as 260 and 891 #'s (these are not area codes but (area) _ _ _) So I have my land line forwarded to my cell phone which I use for personal business. This way my clients are reaching a person and not just a machine and also allowes me to return calls promptly. I am also considering putting a second line on my cell phone (nextel has this capability) that way I know when it is a business call or a personal one. Because at this point I answer all my calls (the ones that I do not recognize from caller ID) by saying my company name!!
  6. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,439

    nextel offers the ability on some phones to have 2-lines for one phone. you might try checking with your provider.

    for obvious, irritating revenue reasons, this seems to be something that the cellcos are avoiding.
  7. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    I don't have a shop, and I don't expect to live at my home longer than my business is going to be around. I want a solution that will be portable and not tied to location. Which is why I got the voicemail only number. My current cell phone is basically the only phone that I answer. I never give out my home number, and I don't answer the phone at home even if it rings. If family friends need to get in touch, they call the cell phone. And I'd really like to keep the business line separate from my personal cell. Which brings me to my original question of having 2 cell phones. I found out that my current cell company will add a second number to my account and I can share the minutes between the two phones. Which is probably what I'm gonna do. It just seems like such a waste though.

    As far as answering the phone when it calls, I don't think that's such a biggie. If anything, it helps to weed out the pitas I've found. The ones that absolutely have to get in touch with me are the ones that are going to cause problems. And I don't need to, or look to get every call that comes my way. I'm thinking that even if people are calling my cell, the only time I'm answering is when I'm in the truck or not working.

  8. scrib

    scrib LawnSite Member
    Posts: 14

    Nextel has alternative line service. I have this on my phone and it is great. You can have 2 #'s and 1 phone, have them billed together or seperate bills. The only problem is you can only have 1 voice mail box.
  9. lawnman_scott

    lawnman_scott LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,547

    So what is the purpose of this line?
  10. SCW

    SCW LawnSite Member
    Posts: 29

    I personally think having your business line go straight to voicemail all the time is a mistake. When people call, they want to hear a live person - at least in our experience. If you don't have a live person answering your phone - you don't know how many calls you're missing---alot of people will hang up if they don't get a live person. Our business # goes to my Nextel phone. I'm the one that answers the phone (just during normal business hours). My husband manages the crew and does the quoting, works with the crew sometimes, repairs equipment, etc. He also has a Nextel phone and we use the 2-way radio feature to communicate. With my Nextel phone that's the business #, we're on a plan for unlimited incoming calls for $49.99/mo (plus taxes) - that way I don't have to worry about long I spend talking on the phone to prospects/customers when they call.

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