Monday to Fridays – Afternoon preferred
I take Mondays off to perform “administrative” work, or catch up on my billable work that I should have done over the weekend. I take Fridays off completely, to allow me time in the afternoon to shop for supplies or other ventures out of HART’s cave (since I work at home) especially when I do not get out much during the week. Although I would like to have a 4-day work week, It would be Thursday/Fridays that I might do overnight work marathons and sleep in on Friday mornings. I do listen to all telephone messages and will call you back. If you call me, can you please leave a message? I am LEAST LIKELY to consider messages urgent that just say “call me back it’s urgent” and MOST LIKELY to call back clients and messages that describe why the phone call. If I need to do research or pull a file or datafile up on screen it would be nice to have that information ready when I call back.
“Afternoons Preferred” means that I do not look at phone messages, or answer my phone until the afternoon each day, and unless it is tax time (see below) all scheduled client meetings will be in the afternoon between 12:00 noon and 5:00pm
Saturday and Sunday – Off
The weekends are family time for me, or household time, or ‘production mode’ work for me when I want to spend time my family, I need to get some work done, if I want to go shopping, see a movie, or do nothing. I prefer not to meet clients during the weekend. I am still available in afternoons by phone, or by special appointment.
Evenings after 5:30pm – Off
Weekdays from 5:30pm to 9:00pm are family time for me when I eat supper and spend time with my family. I do not work or answer phones or meet clients during this time, no exception. After this private time, I usually end up working another 3-6 hours during the late evening on my offline accounting or online internet business, however it is too late to call me so please use email to contact me. In fact, I will not be happy if there are late night phone calls that disturbs my family.
Emails and Toll-Free Fax Line – 24/7
Because I am have an online business and activities, I get somewhere between 400-1000 emails PER DAY. A lot are spam, or just notifications from various blogs or social media sites I participate on. Because of this quantity of emails, my email policy is to keep everything up on my desktop (I use GMAIL) and then, working first in first out, I clear my emails when I have responded to them. If I haven’t responded back to your email, I eventually will, as I catch up and clear all my unanswered/unread emails. Technically, since I work at home and usually on the internet, I am reachable by email 24/7 at hart@HBSMC.com. All my domains route to my gmail account, so just in case my server is down you may also want to cc: firstname.lastname@example.org or email direct to the gmail address. I also use Fax to email service. It is a toll-free fax from anywhere in North America (toll free 1-888-427-8268) and I will receive your fax as an image emailed to my gmail account. This may be another way to reach me, if you do not have email or internet access.
Social Media Accounts – Twitter
Yes – I am on most major social media sites, and getting notifications. However, if you prefer to contact me this way, send me a tweet to @HartleyBSinger .. I do get notifications for all public messages/tweets to me and will notice your tweet. I positively ignore all private messages/DM’s so please don’t bother with that. If I can make a suggestion, please just get my attention and do not reveal private information about yourself or situation you do not want public on the internet.
Exceptions to the Rules
Of course, there are exceptions and I will be no different. While I do not answer phones until afternoon, I still conduct business in the mornings and use the phone to communicate. During Tax Time (March and April) I schedule a lot of weekend client meetings and morning client meetings. I still do not answer phone calls until the afternoons however! “Tax Time” is a vague term, however, and can mean time from February 1st thru to June 30th. When July comes, I am usually burnt out from adrenalin rush and long continuous hours and tend to go into hibernation mode.
Feel free to read and subscribe to 1800HART.com/blog. I mostly post updates and news items from Canada Revenue Agency, and standard IRS notices that may be useful to know and read at least once to familiarize yourself with. During the off-season, I do not post much on that blog.