Wednesday, March 2, 2016

How to Conduct Effective Meetings

I came across this article in a publication that was sent to me. 
 I think it's a great read and want to share it! Enjoy.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

40 years and counting!

Dreams do come true! While working evening shift for a telephone company in Atlanta, Sandra Black dreamed of offering answering service in her local hometown.  She knew an answering service would assure businesses they wouldn't miss important calls, but she also knew she could provide them a low cost alternative to hiring a secretary. She partnered with Jacque Waters, who offered secretarial/typing services to the same customer base. Before today’s luxury of home computers & printers, there was a demand for typing services!   Thus, A Superior Answering & Secretarial Service, Inc. was born.  Sandra and Jacque took personal interest in in helping their clients grow their business and save money.  

In 1976, Sandra answered her first call at A Superior in Conyers GA.  She had 4 clients.  She started with individual phones for each client. Soon, she had so many phones the telephone man added a blinking light so she would know which one was ringing!  Due to the fast growth, we purchased 4 switchboards.  At the early days, our hours were 8am to 6pm.  In 1979, we meet our clients needs by offering  services 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.   Jacque soon started her own business, and Sandra continued her answering service in that Conyers office. The early 1980’s brought about telecommunication changes that allowed her to offer answering service to all of Metro Atlanta and not just her local area.  We were still handwriting messages and contacting customers by Digital pagers. By the late 1980’s computerized systems were a must have.  Sandra knew the importance of keeping up with the newest technology, so we installed a computerized answering system. As computer technology took over, things changed quickly. Alphanumeric pagers took replaced most of the digital pagers and soon email would become the new way to communicate. The 1990’s would introduce cell phones and the 2000’s would bring text messaging.  Technology moves fast and our clients would now have their caller’s information immediately.

In 2009, we made a location move. We upgraded our communications systems and moved to a larger location in Madison GA. Sandra’s daughters, Shelly & Tammy, began working full time managing the business.  Sandra retired, but still remains an integral part of business decisions.So here we are today, we’ve handled millions of calls since that November day in 1976 and we have helped thousands of businesses grow and serve their customers. We now service the entire US, not just Metro Atlanta.  And, our goal continues to be to save our clients money and help grow their business.  

Sandra’s dream became a wonderful reality and flourished into a thriving family business that we are proud to be

a part of today, 40 years later!

Original office in Conyers

Upgrade to "the wheel"

Sandra at her desk

New Madison office being built

1st day "live" in new office

Friday, January 1, 2016

Small Business Resolutions for 2016

Small Business Resolutions for 2016

As I was doing some reading this week, I found an article from Huffington Post for New Years' Resolutions for Small Businesses.  I found their suggestions to be very helpful.  Click Here to read the article.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Shuffle It Forward

Today I purchased a Kids Meal from Chick-fil-A.  I was happy to find an Awesome “toy” in the bag.  It’s a deck of cards that’s titled SHUFFLE IT FORWARD.  Each card gives you an idea of something you can do for someone to “brighten their day”.  Designed as a challenge for our kids (or adults) to be conscious and courteous to others.  What an important lesson for us all.  As we are in the holiday season, this is a great time to start Shuffling it Forward!   Below are the challenges included in my deck of cards.

Enjoy and Shuffle It Forward.

  Ask one person you know, “Can I help you with anything?”
       Say, “It’s my pleasure” when someone thanks you for something.
   Thank someone just for being awesome.
      Make an encouraging sign and post it to someones bedroom door, car window or anywhere      they’ll see it.
       Tell one person why you love them.
     Look for one person you know who’s having a down day and try to make them smile.
7.       Smile at someone you know.
    Write a note to a friend about why you like them.  Drop the note in the mail.
    Clean up one mess you didn’t make.
  Thank someone who always helps you.
   Whatever you are doing, let others go ahead of you.
 Give someone you love a high-five.
  Make one new friend.
   Start a conversation by asking, “Are you having a great day?”
  Open the door for someone.
   Write a poem for your parent and give it to them as a gift.
 Make a handmade gift for someone.
  Make up a song about how great one of your friends is and sing it to them.
 Give one thing you own to someone who needs it more than you!

Click here for more of Chick-Fil-A kids meal toys in this series!

Monday, December 14, 2015

           As the holiday season approaches, we would like to wish a Merry Christmas to everyone!  The holidays bring about many different feelings.  We're hoping you will take this time to slow down and enjoy all the GREAT things in your life!  Don't let the stress of decorating, shopping & wrapping gifts take away your JOY.
                                         Your A Superior Family

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

How Answering Service can assist your Heating & Air business

HVAC & Plumbing calls
need immediate attention!

A Superior knows the importance of receiving calls for the Heating & Cooling  and Plumbing Industry.  Your callers want to reach someone day and night when their systems aren't operating properly. Sending your calls to our 24/7/365 call center is the perfect way to meet your customers’ needs.  We will handle your calls according to your instructions.

  • All of our agents work in our call center located in Georgia. We do not outsource our services.
  • We are here to handle your requests 24/7/365. All agents have completed our intensive in-house training programming, with an emphasis on the HVAC/Plumbing Industry. We handle your calls and messages according to your specifications.

Our agents follow your instructions to relay your calls.  We take the steps you require... dispatching calls in emergency situation or holding routine calls for the next business day. Technology allows us a variety of ways to reach you.

Text Messaging

  • Your Tech would get a text message on their cell phone
  • Your Tech can reply to the message without having to call into the service
  • Once we receive the confirmation,  we cancel any further dispatch, so the Tech is not contacted again
  • If the tech does not confirm the message, our agents can take steps to contact them directly via cell phone, home phone, etc. or proceed down a list of other contacts.

Email dispatch

  • Similar to text messaging, we can send the message via email and technicians can respond to confirm they have received the message. If we don't receive a response within a specified time period, we can follow up with a phone call and proceed with appropriate protocol.

On Call Scheduling via Web Portal

  • You are in control of your on call schedule 24/7/365
  • No more faxing or emailing your schedules
  • Login to our web portal using your secure login/password
  • Enter your On-Call Schedule and change them when needed. All changes are automatically updated in our system

Need More?

Service Requests via Website
Let us help you make the most of your website.  Add a "Service Request" form on your site.  Have those forms email to us.  We create a message and dispatch to the appropriate on call technician.  It's that simple.  Your customers will appreciate the ease of requesting service without having to make a phone call!

Telephone Reminders
We provide the technology to contact your clients and remind them of an appointment or the need to schedule their routine maintenance appointment.Customized recordings available for any situations. Clients have the option to confirm, cancel, schedule or reschedule appointments.

Unit Temperature Monitoring
If units, devices or server rooms have the ability to send email notifications for  water leaks or high/low temperature, we can receive those emails, get the necessary information and contact the appropriate technician to handle the situation ASAP.

logo w number & web.jpg

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Cost of a Missed Call

The Cost of a Missed Call
September 1, 2015 - Tommy Cullum

What do unanswered calls cost your business?
Recent studies show 94% of new customers whose
 calls go unanswered choose to go with another
company instead of leaving a message and waiting!
Today’s consumers want an immediate response.

So with all this information in hand why do so
many company’s still neglect to answer the phone?
The two most common answers to this are time and
employee cost. Most small businesses do not have the means to staff for every possible
time a call might come in. They have to run a “lean” business to maximize profit, but in
turn sacrifice customer service! Many small businesses respond to this by developing
self-service internet driven solutions.

Even in today’s technologically advanced, text driven communication environment
people still want to talk to a live person when making buying decisions. The internet
makes it easy to communicate and do business online, but many customers will not
feel at ease doing business with you until they talk to someone, and telephone calls
still generate most of the revenue for small to mid-sized businesses. Loyal customers
 are becoming extinct because of the lack of satisfaction and trust in businesses today
that is driven by the lack of attention to customer service and poor communication.

So, how can a small business ensure calls are being answered and handled properly
without breaking the bank for new staff? A properly trained call center is the ideal
solution. The right call center for your business will offer agents that can be trained to
act as an extension of your business. A call center will also allow your business to expand its
operating hours to limit missed calls, increase sales, and improve customer satisfaction.
They also limit your costs on personnel as the call center takes care of all
the employee responsibilities and costs giving you the ability to focus on your business!

Be sure to do your research and find the proper call center for your business to ensure success.
Spend time with the call center management team to make sure they know how to handle
your calls appropriately and I am sure you will immediately see the value. Any company’s
number one asset is their customers, and a properly used call center can show you value
them and create the sticky customer your business is searching for!