Everyone has had the experience of taking time off from work to wait for a service person or a delivery, only to have that person arrive hours after they said they would.
That lost time from work is costing Americans about $250 per person each year, according to Cindy Perman, in "Just How Much is Waiting for the Cable Guy Costing You?"
That number, she writes, is part of a new "Cost of Waiting" study from TOA Technologies, a company that just so happens to make software that helps businesses better track their service people and narrow down the window of time customers wait.
The lesson for small businesses transcends companies that send service people on the road. Customer service is key is the real message here. And while all small businesses know it, they may not know how frustrated consumers have become: According to the survey, 58 percent of respondents have experienced long wait times in the past year.