How do you feel when your emails go unanswered? Well, not just emails, but phone calls too? Goodness I HATE, HATE, HATE this. It's not just here or there, it is a horrendous problem in business today. Not receiving a response back from enquiries.

I know. I know. You can look at both sides of the coin. The volume and inundation of incoming communication to businesses and staff. Phone. Text messages, Emails. LinkedIn messages. Facebook, Twitter (if you'd like to include them too for incoming enquiries).

You can blame it perhaps on the volume of work that people have to cover today; mixed in with out of action (to respond) time like meetings.

Is it the volume of spam? Of unsolicited 'marketing' emails? Newsletters that are anything but? They're really just 'me, me, me' of businesses without value. CC's up the tush.


This is the dilemma faced when a genuine enquiry is made to a company. One solicited (from the invitation on the website to contact us), to the unsolicited but beneficial such as looking for a new business partner, purchase, fact finding.

I get heaps of incoming emails, many are from my newsletter subscribers. Many from this NZ Herald column with the majority being companies synergetic with something I've written about wanting to meet with me. No matter how busy. No matter what the volume of emails in my inbox is I will always get back. If it's not today, tomorrow or the day after, it might be a week later. But they get a response with an apology for the delay.

I don't know about you, but my business needs constant new blood. So I do make a few calls or introductory email enquiries when I see an upcoming conference that might be a good fit.

I can imagine that anyone that is going to comment on this column will call me a spammer and what do I expect, however genuine researched phone or email enquiries are not spam. How else can you start a conversation? Don't tell me stalking them on Twitter and trying to get into their conversation stream is the answer.

I think it's paramount to institute in every staff member this golden rule.

Communication is gold especially incoming enquires. They all need to be treated with respect.

Our policy is If a phone call or email comes in with a 'work request' I get back to them IMMEDIATELY. Well within an hour or two.

People are always surprised at the speed - but that is what helps to win new business.


Are you monitoring what staff are doing? What business are they letting slip through their fingers from non-response?