Working with small businesses means that I often get people asking me for help. I enjoy mentoring people and helping them get further in life, I don’t mind giving up some of my time for that. However, what really irritates me is when I give up my time for someone on their request and they flake, leaving me behind in my own schedule.
Recently, I have had two people listening to my podcast and reaching out to ask me for help. I set this up in my calendar, knowing that it would send me and the other person an email reminder 24 hours and 1 hour before the call, however when I made the call, they did not answer. I understand that life gets busy and that things crop up, I really do. After all, it happens to me, but a courtesy email to let me know that would have meant the I didn’t sacrifice my own time for nothing. It’s polite, and it also shows good communication skills.
The second person, who had the same set of reminders, asked me to call back later. This left us with less time on the call since I had only scheduled a 30 minute slot, so to make up for that I offered to send out an email summing up the points I did not get around to… and email that has not even been answered.
It isn’t professional to behave in such a way, and if you do want to make a success of yourself then you need to conduct yourself in a way that makes other business owners warm to you, especially if they are sacrificing their time to help you out. After all, you never know who you are going to need and when. Don’t burn unnecessary bridges.