In a 2013 study completed by PwC, the “Next Gen: A Global Generational Study,” it was reported: “Millennial’s want more flexibility, the opportunity to shift hours—to start their work days later, for example, or put in time at night, if necessary. But so do non-Millennials, in equal numbers. In fact, a significant number of employees from all generations feel so strongly about wanting a flexible work schedule that they would be willing to give up pay and delay promotions in order to get it.”
Additionally, we are seeing a shift from what was expected to be a Boomer mass exodus from the workforce and into retirement. Instead, they are continuing to work longer, and many are starting their own businesses to provide sustained income and to fulfill an unfulfilled lifelong passion. Along with becoming encore entrepreneurs, Boomers are seeking greater flexibility to continue working while also enjoying some to the freedoms that come with the golden years of life. “My clients desire flexibility. The young people expect it, and the Boomers want it,” explains Deb Austin, President of Office Alternatives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. “Now, with the advantages of technology we have all the tools to be able to provide that flexibility.”
For many in New Mexico, and particularly Albuquerque, it is about being a “life style worker.” With a plethora of outdoor activities available, great weather, and a fascinating southwestern culture, everyone wants to blend work and play. As a result, flexibility has become a primary factor as small business owners establish themselves. “Since I provide both virtual and physical rental office space to small business owners,” explains Austin, “I am constantly helping my clients implement systems and tools that will allow them to run their business effectively and, at the same time, achieve the level of flexibility they desire.”
At Office Alternatives, RNR© means Right Now Reception©. While the office center provides clients with the services of a receptionist, the RNR© program allows the client to decide specifically when they want their phone answered for them. It might be while they are in the office but on another call, or busy with a client or project. As Austin puts it, “It’s having a receptionist just when you need one.” This is particularly beneficial for the virtual office clients because they can decide exactly when they want to be directly accessible to customers and when they want the assistance of a live receptionist to take the call.
Right Now Reception© (RNR©) provides small business owners with an important element in their strategies for success – the human touch. While the evolution of technology has provided great advantages in the efficient operation of a business, it has often resulted in diminished human interactions with customers. As the demand for more technological advances has increased, so has the demand for more human touch; the interaction with a ‘real person’ – and not one who is reached, hopefully, after successfully navigating through nine recorded prompts. With Office Alternatives RNR© service, clients are assured that their customers will connect immediately with a live person, who will then gather all the information needed to forward a clear message. “Because we ask each business owner, when they sign-up for the service, what their preferences are for forwarding messages, we are able to communicate a customer’s information or question in an accurate and timely manner according the customer’s specific situation.”
The reliability of the RNR© service provides a great win/win for both the clients of Office Alternatives and their customers. It ensures customers get the quality for service they expect, and it allows business owners, both virtual and shared space clients, to achieve the flexibility that attracted them to entrepreneurship in the first place.
To learn more about Deb Austin and Office Alternatives go to: http://www.officealternatives.com.