...everybody promptly returned phone calls and emails.
I, for one, will no longer tolerate people not returning my calls. That is a low life thing to do. No attorney could ever be so great that he's forgiven from that. And, as far as email goes, common courtesy dictates a response to any reasonable message.
I'll wager that a good part of the work-a-day week is spent waiting for returned calls that never come or spent making calls and getting nothing but that ubiquitous voice stating that, "I'm not in right now... please leave a message and I'LL CALL YOU BACK." That is complete nonsense. They almost never call back. You know it and I know it. I suspect that voice mail is something that was invented by FEMA.
Being a born and bred New Yorker, I have a vicious streak in me. When you call my company, be sure you get the name of the person you spoke to and if they don't call you back right away, call me and you'll make my day (especially with Christmas bonuses coming up).
Lately there's a thing with doctors that their voicemail says, "If it's an emergency, please call 911". My wife's ex-husband is a stroke survivor and the other night he woke up with a problem and called 911. When I was told this, I wanted to go out and beat the crap out of him. Meanwhile, he ended up finding a doctor who works from his home and makes house calls. Arthur had the temerity to ask the doctor to stop at Arby's and bring him a chicken salad sandwich!! (Which his dear doctor did!!). I told Arthur that if word got around that the doctor was doing these kind of things, he'd lose his license. There is no room in medicine for humanitarians.