10 Telephone etiquettes to practice at work

10 Telephone etiquettes to practice at work

Appropriate telephone etiquettes are imperative as you are in lieu of your department and the organization you are concomitant with. Proper usage of telephone etiquette, while answering the phone or while making calls, leaves the caller with a positive imprint of yours.

A few key things to remember when it comes to phone etiquette:

• Use of axioms such as "thank you" and "please" are crucial in exhibiting proficiency.
• Pay heed to what others are speaking without intrusion.

An earnest, accommodating, proficient and sociable voice on the telephone can build client trustworthiness. If you entertain the customers with basic courtesies, it will help in retaining the customers.

Below mentioned are the tips to practice for improving your telephone etiquettes at work or in general:

1. Acknowledgement
While answering a call, be sure that you mention your name as well as your company’s name. It is always better that your greeting ends with a helpful statement.
For example: Hello, ABC Airline, This is Alie, how may I help you?

2. Listen
Listening is an important feature while learning and implementing telephone decorum. You should pay heed to both the content as well as the intent of the customer’s message. When you listen actively to the customer you will be able to accurately respond to his query.

For example:
Customer: Hi, I would like to know the billing details of my phone.
You: Sure sir, Could you please hold the line while I transfer you to Mr XYZ from the billing department?

3. Empathize
How would you empathize with a customer is the thought running in your mind at the moment? Well we all have faced frustration, while we are seeking for answers and we do not get the answers. Especially you may have faced it while calling any call centre. What if they do not understand your problem and just snap back at you instead? You would not want to be associated with them anymore right?

Similarly, if you are faced at your work- front with an unsatisfied or angry customer, the first thing to do is empathise with his situation. Understand his situation or best would be try to get into his shoes and understand.

For example:

Customer: I have been trying to call your call centre since long, but there is no response from your end. Do you incline to solve my query or not?

You: I am sorry sir/madam for the inconvenience caused to you. Please hold the line I shall immediately transfer your line to the concerned department.

Customer: No, I do not have time to hold the line. Its urgent.

You: Alright sir, I’ll just look in for the executive who can attend your call immediately. Please give me a moment sir.

This is the way you can deal with unsatisfied or frustrated customers.

4. Probing
In terms of probing, remember the simple rule of the 5 W’s, Who, What, Why, When, Where and How.

For Example:
You to the unsatisfied customer: You could ask him his problem. If he is unwilling to share, you could ask him to wait. If he is unwilling to wait as well, just commit to him, that as soon as any of the executive gets free, you would ask them to give you a call right away.

But make sure that someone calls the customer back, or your company might lose one customer.

5. Courteousness
Taking permission before transferring the call or putting the call on hold, greeting the customer, wishing good day at the end of the call are some common courtesies that you must follow. Always try to address your customer with their name after resuming your call from hold.

6. Do not disclose your company rules
Do not disclose what rules does your company follows, nor should you use any jargons which are used by your company. The customer is not aware of those jargons and is not even interested in knowing those jargons.

7. Proposing elucidations to the customer
At time the customer demands certain things which as per the company laws you cannot fulfil them. In such cases just give the customer with options that you can do as per the laws, so that he can choose which of those options best suits him and act accordingly.

For Example: If a customer asks you to connect his call to the CEO of the company without any prior notice, which you cannot do it from your end as per the instructions provided to you.

You can simply ask the customer to either give you the message and you shall get his message conveyed or you could ask for his name, company’s name and contact details so that you can fix his call with the CEO or you could ask him to mail his query at the company’s website.

The customer can choose the best option which suits him.

8. Watch your tone
While conversing on the phone, you have to closely monitor your voice quality and the tone in which you speak. As you are not talking to the person face to face, hence if your tone and voice is not appropriate, there are high chances of misunderstandings between you and the customer.

Especially if the customer is calling for the first time, then the way you speak and entertain the customer gives him the impression of your company.

9. Appreciating the customer
Thank the customer for calling and choosing you or your company for the prospective business coming up. The customer will also be overwhelmed and you could maintain your relations with the customer.

10. Hanging up
Always keep in mind, you should never hand up the phone before the customer does. It is very rude if you hang up the call before the customer has disconnected the call, and with this you may lose the customer or he may be offended with this behaviour of yours.
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