3 Things About.... Flexible Working
1. If possible, be up front with your clients. Nowadays clients know that people work flexibly, they just like to know what to expect. So manage expectations by telling them. At Seed, I do this at the very first point of contact, in our Discovery Calls, when we tell prospective clients about how we work. All our team work part time and flexible hours so it is imperative our clients know this.
2. Utilise call scheduling tools, or appointment software where possible. This enables clients to book in some time with you, at a time that you have blocked out as available. I have defaults set for most of the time, and then adjust it accordingly (and heavily in the holidays!). I use Calendly for this, which syncs in with my Google calendar, and automatically updates my availability.
3. Consider a call answering service. You can get these with varying levels of assistance. On a very basic level, you can have someone take a message, which then gets emailed to you, so that you can call them back at a convenient time. This means your clients and prospective clients are always getting your voicemail, or you don't have to worry about answering a call whilst in a crowded softplay centre with children tearing around in the background.
And on a final note, be kind to yourself. Allow yourself personal time that doesn't involve family or business. Accept that you may have a few additional evenings working when you don't usually, and call in for help. So many business owners are in the same boat, maybe see if any of your business owning friends might want to do a childcare swap to give you a few hours to knuckle down?