The Morning Eye blog in today’s Orange County Register has a link to a very useful tool: The IVR Cheat Sheet by Paul English. This sheet gives you the ways to escape voice mail hell. The Seattle Times has a similar list.
I, for one, am going to print it out and use it. I find it really annoying to have to wade through 30 minutes of menus just to talk to a person who can resolve my issue in five minutes. Yes, it saves the company money, but it wastes my time. Hopefully, you will find it of use as well.