CHAPTER 3

THERE’S A RINGING IN MY EARS!

You know what it feels like. You place a call and the telephone rings once, twice, three times, four times, six times, eight times. You wonder if you’ve dialed the wrong number or whether you’ve accidentally called Mars—and no one is home. Or, maybe the person you’re calling is suffering an elbow malady that prevents him or her from picking up the phone. Or perhaps today is a new federal holiday and your company is the only one open for business.

Finally, you give up, abandon your attempt. You become yet another customer lost to an unanswered telephone.

It’s precisely because of this all too frequent scenario that many companies have instituted a policy of “answer by the third ring.” By setting a standard ...

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