1 Life Lesson from 2 Dentists
A dentist I know once had a patient who superglued his crown onto his tooth. He wanted to save to some money. How do you think that worked out?
A decade or so ago give or take another, John Whitcomb got a call from a different dentist having an issue.
This particular dentist was an RCI customer with a telephone system we had sold and installed. The customer had bought a new phone and was trying to add it to the system. He tried to install it and program it on his own and found he was unable. Finally in desperation, he called John who immediately went out to the site and in about 30 minutes, the customer had a phone functioning the way he’d expected.
The exasperated dentist said, “I don’t know what it is. I just couldn’t seem to figure it out!”
John smiled a little slyly at him and responded, “Y’know I always have the same issues when I try to fill my own cavities…”
D I Y Can Be D U M B
They had a good laugh at that. But it brings up a real issue. In our DIY culture with HGTV, youtube tutorials and even This Old House, a lot of pressure can be put on the individual to be able to do it all. But answer me this. How much do you think that dentist made an hour? Couldn’t his time have been better spent doing something else, even from a monetary perspective?
It doesn’t make sense to struggle through something yourself that you could more easily pay us to do. Isn’t his time worth more than the energy he wasted trying to fix a complex problem outside of his wheelhouse. There’s no shame in not knowing what you don’t know and leaving problems to the experts.
With that being said, here are a few jobs customers mistakenly try to do themselves that cause themselves more problems later.
Cabling seems pretty straight forward. You run a tube from here to there. What could go wrong? Well…you’d be surprised.
We have been called in on more than one occasion to clean up the work of someone else.
When you’ve been cabling for years, you recognize potentially pitfalls at the beginning. For example, we’ve had customers run cable over objects that over time slice the cable with friction. We also know how to make a cabling job look neat and label it so you’ll understand what it’s for later when you need to make a change.
Finally there’s cable terminations. Terminating cable is a skill developed over time. You may be able to do it, but it’s going to take a lot longer.
Can you program your own phone? Well, yeah. But should you? Well…
Listen, there are manuals out there and there are even some simple fixes to changing some buttons’ functions. But when you get down into the nitty gritty, the addition of features-, giving and removing permissions for things like programming and call recording, do you really want to have to spend all that time? As a rule of thumb, if it’s something you have to read more than a page to figure out, just call your telephone provider.
This is really a subset of feature programming. When new staff comes in, you want that staff member name to be changed on the phone and possibly have the features upgraded to better reflect the new individuals needs. You also need the new individual to change their outgoing voicemail message and probably don’t want the new hire to have access to the former employees messages. Unless you have a very large staff with an employee who has the specific duty of handling employee turnover and orientation, this is probably one of those tasks that your provider is better equipped to handle.
On the Other Hand…
Conversely, if you have an old phone system, your time might not change back automatically during the fall and the spring. This is one of those few programming changes that are easy enough to handle on your own. We walk through people on how to do this twice a year. And although most telephone systems automatically update on their own we still have a few clients with older system who need a little help on this. If you’re one of them, maybe it’s time for an upgrade?