Greeting from Honduras! It is a beautiful country but very poor. The people are friendly and seem to appreciate foreigners who volunteer their time to help the local communities. In fact, we’ve met people from the USA, Canada, England, Australia, Denmark, Israel and others who have come here to volunteer their time.
As the founder and president of Reliable Receptionist, observing the lifestyle here brings an entirely new perspective to what we do. Since we provide off-site telephone answering and appointment scheduling services, we rely heavily on technology in our business. Standard landline telephone technology is very underdeveloped in Honduras. Land lines are rare from what we have seen. However, cell phones are pervasive throughout the country. It seems these developing countries have determined that it is far more efficient to put up a cell tower and serve several thousand people at once rather than run traditional telephone lines through a country where even electicity can be sparse. Local cell phone providers (Tigo and Claro) sell pre-paid phone credits at corner markets (palperias) and those Hondurans who can afford it use the cell phone as their lifeline. The picture to the right shows a Honduran home with a cell tower in the background.
It would be unusual for a small business person in the countryside here to have a telephone receptionist. Many won’t even have a telephone to answer. Nevertheless, many of the same principles apply to do successful business here. Confidence and trust is an important part of any business relationship. Whether calling on the phone or doing business face-to-face, a prospective client needs to feel you are reliable, accessible and trusworthy to hire you.