I had a client of one of my VA team members contact me recently. He wanted to know how much contact I had with them and if I could check into something for him.
A VA had been providing him with phone services and he said he’d emailed, SMS’d and left a phone message for her and she’d not responded. He was concerned as he’d had reports his phone calls weren’t being answered – a job that she was doing for him.
I immediately looked up her phone number and called her to find out what was happening. Perhaps she was ill, something had happened and I wanted to make sure she was ok. Instead it turned out he’d not paid his invoice from November and he hadn’t replied to her email about payment.
I asked her if she’d phoned him and she paused and then said no, she hadn’t. She was obviously very upset and angry with this client and told me all of what she’d been doing for him and he hadn’t paid. I tried to drive home the importance of picking up the phone to talk instead of assuming he’d gotten her email follow up about payment. Yes, he would have had the invoice and yes, he was late in paying but there may have been a miscommunication or a very real reason and it’s important she speak to him instead of just sending an email.
There are valid reasons when you should stop doing work for a client or ‘sack the client’ as I know some VAs have had to do but you do need to give them a fair go too first. Email is not 100% delivery proven – we all know that emails go astray, as does snail mail from time to time. So it’s very important to do the quick thing and pick up a phone.