Rick Segal has posted a few business tips for 2006. I especially like this one and can so see the advantages into trying it.
Forward your phone to a responsible person.
Let’s face it, you need the personal touch of a responsible assistant but, as a start up, you can’t afford it. Simple. Forward your phone to a responsible friend. You know the one that keeps the desk neat, remembers people’s birthdays and never seems to have any fast food wrappers tossed in the back of their car. It works brilliantly and you don’t even have to tell them because, being all responsible -n- such, they will handle the calls. A live call gets a responsible person who will take a message for you after the “uh, I’m looking for Rick” stuff. A voice mail gets done with “this is, uh, a message for Rick” which, of course, gets dutifully transcribed by your responsible friend. Try to get the one not particularly tech savvy so you can blame this on the phone call company with a reasonable shot of getting away with it. As a start up, these costs savings will add up.