My wife and I are in the process of replacing our garage door, and I have been requesting estimates online using each company’s online contact form to fill out my information and a description of what we’re looking for. Both companies I’ve reached out to let you indicate your preferred method of communication in a manner similar to this:

I selected email in both cases.

You can guess where this is going — they both called me within an hour of submitting each of my requests.

To their credit, Company A followed up their call with an email as well as a text. I appreciated the options for getting back to them, although they still started by calling (and leaving an almost two minute message).

Company B called me and left a message asking if I could meet at my house at noon that day to get an estimate. I’m at work an hour away from the house—that’s not going to happen.

Why Do I Hate Phone Calls?

I don’t hate phone calls per se, but the situation isn’t urgent and I work in an environment that isn’t conducive to taking personal calls. I also find phone calls to be incredibly intrusive. With a message, I’m free to get back to you at a time that is convenient for me. With a call, you interrupt my day with my phone either ringing or buzzing.

One of my other complaints about phone calls (and text messages) for that matter, is that once I listen to a voicemail, or read a text, I can’t go back and mark those as being unplayed or unread. Therefore, if I’m not in a place where I can quickly drop a task into my to do list, my next action is often lost.

If you offer me the chance to interact with you via phone or email, why can’t you respect my choice? If you’re not going to then don’t even give me the option. We have a couple of contractors who are completely fine working with me over email. Those are the people I love working with. The ones who respect my time and give me the chance to work with them on a schedule that works best for me.

Maybe I’m expecting too much from this situation. I realize that I’m going to have to eventually talk to these companies if we decide to move forward with them, but I just wish they’d communicate with me in the manner that I indicated was preferable.