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I have a new policy on texting.

Discussion in 'Christmas Trees & Seasonal' started by David Gretzmier, Dec 2, 2012.

  1. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,646

    My new policy is...no more information on texts. when a customer texts me with any problem, my answer on texts is ALWAYS going to be from now on: " Thanks for the heads up, let me come by or have the guys come by and try to determine the problem and solution." period. no more of this trying to trouble shoot by text, no more of this language and inflection problem that comes with text with a client. And I am thinking about the day when texting me is no longer considered communication to get things fixed. with employees and the answering service texts, I am not making this up, I got 5700 text messages in novemeber. at 200 texts per day, it is WAY too easy for that random number saying- "hey can you come by? the tree is half out-thanks!" to get lost in the ocean.

    when folks are telling me their lights are not working, I will no longer take the bait on solving by text.
  2. grandview (2006)

    grandview (2006) LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,462

    Your 1st policy should be to get a new number.

    NIXRAY LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 530

    Im not sure why this was EVER a option for you at all...I don't think texts should be an accepted form of communication rather it be from crew or customer. IMO its a VERY unprofessional way to handle business, Answer your phone, if you cant respond to voice mails, if you cant do that hire some one for that, TIME IS MONEY....in the amount of time it takes you to get back to someone, they couldve hired/replaced you....
  4. OP
    David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,646

    We have a very nice live paid answering service that takes excellent messages and we always call folks back unless asked not to and we just do whatever service they mention.

    texts often make sense for employees needing one key piece of infomation-address, outlet location, wreath placement, working saturday, etc. When I am in sales meetings constantly like last week, it can be a huge time saver. Also being able to send texts to all employees at once looking for a short piece of timely key information- "anybody know where the impact wrench is?" "Did anyone borrow the e450?" And many times customers often on text are very nice- "Dave, no need to come out tonight, but if someone could come out tomorrow and change a few bulbs, I would appreciate it" "Dave- thanks for the bow on the wreath, it looks great" All of these are entirely MADE for texts and save huge time.

    But more and more often, texts and even voicemails allow folks to be a bit more snarky than they are in person or on the phone in person. zingers like "David-not happy" and that is it. or "not impressed" The worst- "call me NOW". I believe texts allows some folks to be more aggressive than a live conversaion on phone or definetly than in person. Responding with "I am in a meeting, can call you in 30" can help, but often just creates another aggressive text from folks who want a bit of control.

    so texts have allowed some folks to use the form of communication to bully me a bit. further, the back and forth, trying to appease the customer who obviously loves to text rather than talk, can waste time. you are correct that it makes sense in many instances to pick up the phone rather than try to work it out on text. that is what I want to stop.

    Somehow to keep the good of text but get rid of the bad.
  5. TimNNJ

    TimNNJ LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 321

    A few of my customers who I did give my cell phone text me ..I tell them right off the bat that if they need a service, scheduling or anything else to call my office and they will schedule you in. Text get lost in the ocean like Dave said..Some people have a hard time with that but for the most part it works out and keeps me organized. If people call into the office and it is urgent they can get me on the line and I can opt to take it or to just schedule. It just works out for me that way.
  6. PlantscapeSolutions

    PlantscapeSolutions LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,096

    I hate texting period. When I get a text I call the person back. Not using any smart phone features yet either. I do not want to get emails during the day whether it be good news or bad news it can wait until the end of the day. If it's a 911 issue you should be calling me. I may cave in to the smart phone thing eventually but I'm trying to hold out for at least another year.

    My other issue is buy the durable contractor phones only. Give me a phone with a touch screen and it will be cracked by sun down. If I can't throw it in my pocket with keys and other odds and ends I don't want it.
  7. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,958

    Plus one on the lack of a smart phone and I do not text. Call me or the office or send an e-mail for non-urgent matters.
  8. Birchwood

    Birchwood LawnSite Member
    Messages: 218

    I also don't text, I feel I spend too much time driving. But customers send me a text and have no way to know that I never recieved it.

    I had a customer who left me a message the other day to say half the house wasn't working and said they called me 4 times and left messages and no one called back. When I called back I said there is no possible way they could have, because both phone numbers go to my cell. He admited to sending texts.

    Turns out the cord was unpluged simple fix any way.
  9. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,958

    I eat hot foods however.
  10. cgrant711

    cgrant711 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 320

    Haha, I would hate to recieve that many texts in 1 day from customers. I'm a much smaller busines and for now only do landscaping and maintenance, but texting helps me out a lot. I use texting when I text customers the day before I cut there lawn or am scheduling them for an estimate. I usually call when I'm about to head out to give estimates and the majority of problems I deal with I either go in person or at least I call.

    You seem much larger and probably need an assistant and definitely a business number if you don't have one. The good thing is you seem busy which typically means your doing well.
    Posted via Mobile Device

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