Give your best contacts your cell and home numbers. Here’s a balance point. This says your “best” contacts, not your 100 best contacts. A handful of my clients have my cell and home phones (although my home phone is listed), but I try to keep that to a very short list. My wife deserves my undivided attention, too.

Give your clients your direct line if you have one. This is our practice at Blanchard Walker, and I think it is a good one. You’d be amazed at the pleasant surprise that many clients get when their lawyer answers his or her own phone. You can send all calls to voicemail if you’re in conference (my practice) or you can screen calls with caller identification without being obvious (and, therefore, possibly rude).

If the switchboard operator or assistant respond, have him or her offer to take a message or put callers to voicemail. I personally appreciate it when folks give me that choice, and I suspect others do, too.

Good hunting.