Do you use your company's voice mail for all that it's worth? You probably don't use it as much as Fred DeLuca,cofounder and president of Subway, the sandwich chain, based in Milford, Conn., that racked up 1994 revenues of $2.7billion. DeLuca uses Subway's voice-mail system as a tool for constant communication, sending out, he says, an average of four and as many as ten group messages a day to his salespeople.

When, for instance, he hears about something a competitor is doing, he'll pass the information along to everyone, by either summarizing the news he received or forwarding the actual voice message sent to him. "People file it away and maybe don't do anything that minute, but as they learn, they become that much sharper," says DeLuca. "I envision the system as a seminar room."

His typical message, he says, is about one minute long. And he prefers this way of keeping in touch to electronic mail. "A voice conveys emotion," he observes. DeLuca's staff, meanwhile, has learned that if they leave him a message, it's likely to be passed on to their colleagues.