Tom Kane of Legal Marketing Blog posts on the importance of a human answering a phone. Tom is certainly right that you shouldn’t regularly let phone calls go to voice mail, particularly when you’re in the office. At the same time, I’m not so certain about the importance of having a receptionist pick up. As a personal matter, I’d much rather hit someone’s voice mail directly, then have to speak with a receptionist or secretary, let alone leave a message with them. Also, many new solos don’t have the resources to hire a receptionist to answer calls. Consequently, they’re likely to use a virtual receptionist, which can sometimes be more of a disaster if the receptionist is rude or simply sends messages to voice mail without any elaboration.