Telephone calls are an integral part of business communication. A significant part of official contacts with partners, officials, and clients takes place precisely by telephone. Proper use of telephone capabilities is very effective in saving valuable time. However, ignorance of telephone etiquette causes irreparable harm to the reputation and image of a business person.
The basic requirements of telephone etiquette are simple.
When negotiating a call, always check when it is more convenient to make it. After dialing, do not hold the handset for long if no one answers at the other end of the wire. The maximum waiting time is six beeps. If you have instructed the employee or secretary to reach the person you are interested in, then you should be ready to join the conversation at any time.
Do not forget to say hello. Always and with everyone. Psychologists recommend saying: “Good afternoon!” Rather than “Hello!”, As the last word has more consonants. Saying “Good morning!” And “Good evening!” Is also not advisable: we have a working day.
After the greeting, invite the person you are interested in to the phone, then introduce yourself - the one who calls is the first to call himself. It’s permissible not to call yourself if there is no subscriber on the spot with whom you need to talk. You can ask when he will be in place, or ask for something to convey to him.
Do not ask, “Who are you?” And what is your number? ”, But it’s possible to clarify whether you dialed the number correctly and phoned where you wanted. If you made a mistake with the number, then at the next set, immediately specify whether it is the number that you need. If the conversation was interrupted due to technical reasons, then the initiator of the conversation should call back.
A phone call must comply with the requirements of brevity. Do not forget: time is money! The recommended duration of a business conversation is no more than five minutes. It will be very kind of you if at the beginning of the conversation you ask if the person you are talking to has time and to what extent. If he's busy, apologize and ask when it's best to call back.
When answering a phone call, you need to pick up the phone before the fourth or fifth call, ideally - after the second. Answers such as “Yes!”, “Hello!”, “I'm listening!” Are unacceptable in an official setting. Business etiquette recommends creating a script of the first words of greeting in relation to the specifics of your company, company. You do not need to give a surname, limiting yourself to only designating your position or department of the company. It is important that the person who dialed your number understands exactly where he called and who is talking to him. If your colleague is asked to call, it’s indecent to find out who is asking him.
If you are very busy, it’s better to turn off the phone or ask the secretary to answer the phone. If a client or visitor is in your office, communication with him is undoubtedly a priority. You should answer the call only in order to find out who is calling and tell you when you can call back, or ask the person to leave your number and promise to call him back later. If you have visitors and you need to call, you should apologize to them, and try to make the call as short as possible.
Under equal conditions, the one who called ends the conversation. When talking with the boss, the initiative to end the conversation should come from him. (By the way, in an out-of-office setting a woman has the same privilege). If the conversation drags on, then you can summarize using the phrases: “I believe that we have discussed all the issues,” “Thank you for taking the time for me,” and the like. Try not to be impatient, leave a pleasant impression about yourself.
It is considered bad form to make official calls home or on your personal mobile phone. Business people with a good reputation should be in time to do their work during working hours. If your business partner has provided you with your home or mobile phone number and allowed you to call at any time, you should not take it literally. In the event of prior agreement or extreme circumstances, you can, of course, call after hours, but such a call should be the exception, not the rule. All the more, think a hundred times before calling too early in the morning or late at night. In order for you to decide to call before 8am and after 11pm, at least a fire must occur.
And most importantly, always be friendly. After all, telephone wires can transmit both a gloomy look and a displeased facial expression, and a friendly smile.
How to learn to talk on the phone correctly?
When negotiating a call, always check when it will be more convenient to make it.
After dialing, do not hold the handset for long if the wires on the other end are not responding.
The maximum waiting time is 6 beeps.
Recommended duration of a business conversation no more 5 - ty minutes.
And business conversations are best planned in the morning.
And do not lose your temper.
If you call a friend, then immediately call him by name, and from a stranger at the beginning of the upcoming conversation, find out the name:
- What is your name ?, or
- How can I contact you?
In a conversation, often call the interlocutor by name.
It will be faster and better to get the person you are talking to by telling him something pleasant:
- Glad to hear you,
- Nice to meet you,
- Thank you for the comprehensive information.
- I hope for further cooperation, etc.
To begin, think about what result you expect from the conversation, what information you want to convey to the interlocutor, and what kind of reaction will be desirable for you.
If you clearly define your goals, it will be much easier for you to have a conversation.
1. Pay attention to the intonation of the greeting.
After a few seconds of monotonous beeps, few people want to hear the even more dull “Listen” or “Hello”. Usually, having heard such intonation, the client begins to doubt whether he needs to ask something further. Pick up the phone, speak politely, in a good mood. Do not forget to not only say “Good morning / day / evening”, but also introduce yourself by indicating the name of the organization and your name. Thus, the client will be sure that he called the right place.
Remember, it is your greeting that sets the tone for further negotiations.
2. Speak with a smile
Just because the client is on the other side of the telephone wire does not mean that he does not catch your mood. From the expression on the face, the timbre of the voice actually changes. Therefore, in order to achieve a relaxed tone of conversation, be kind to the interlocutor, smile. The legible, friendly style of the call manager's conversation is conveyed to the client, and he answers you the same.
3. Pick up after the second beep
One or two seconds help the call manager to distract from the previous business, tune in to a successful conversation. But do not let the phone ring five or more times, but the call still remains unanswered. During this time, the client begins to get nervous, annoyed, form a bad opinion about the company. When you all the same answer this call, the client will no longer trust the efficiency of the company as a whole.
If it still happens that you pick up the phone after long beeps, be sure to apologize to the caller.
5. Do not interrupt the conversation without explanation
The phrase “Please wait one minute” without explaining why you need this minute confuses the client. Where, why are you leaving, how long will you have to wait on the line - exactly such thoughts appear at the caller, and after them - unwillingness to carry on a conversation further. Ideally, do not get distracted during phone calls at all.
7. Do not conduct two conversations at the same time.
No business can be completed in a quality manner if you combine it with other tasks. So it is with telephone conversations. You cannot solve the problems of two or three clients in parallel. Firstly, you make each of them wait. Secondly, you yourself get confused about who cares. Never switch to a new call without ending the current one.
10. At the end of the conversation, say goodbye to the client
Never hang up without saying goodbye. Perhaps the client has many questions of interest. Concluding the conversation, ask if you can tell the other person anything else. If the answer is no, wish the client a good day, say “Goodbye”. The final words also leave an impression of the company. An organization that respects its customers comes to success. It is in such a place that people turn again.
Communicating effectively with the client over the phone is a difficult task, but it depends on this skill what authority the company will have, what the organization will achieve. Use these tips, find an individual approach to each client and develop!
The theater begins with a hanger, and a telephone conversation in English with a greeting. In addition to the usual Good morning / afternoon / evening, you need to introduce yourself. According to the rules of etiquette, you need to immediately tell the interlocutor who is bothering him. In this case, it is advisable to name not only your full name, but also the company that you represent.
Welcome phrases in English by phone:
|This is Ostap Bender bothering.|
|This is Ostap Bender.|
|This is Ostap Bender from Horns and Hooves.|
|This is Ostap Bender from Horns and Hooves.|
And after the person answers you with a greeting, be sure to ask a simple but very important question:
|Are you comfortable talking now?|
If a person is busy, immediately specify when it will be possible to talk with him. Take on board the following phrases:
|Can I call you back?|
|I'll call you back later.|
|Tell me, please, when is it better to call you back?|
It may happen that you dial the wrong number. In this case, you can use the following phrases:
|Is this the number 777-5555?|
|I must have dialed the wrong number.|
|Sorry, I must have dialed the wrong number.|
|Sorry to bother you.|
How to respond to the greeting
Now imagine the opposite situation - they called you and introduced yourself. How to answer the other person?
First, be sure to say hello to the usual words Good morning / afternoon / evening, then, depending on your position and the specifics of cooperation with foreign partners and clients, you can use these phrases to talk on the phone in English:
|"Horns and hooves". How can I help you?|
|Thank you for calling Horn and Hoof. Ostap Bender by the phone. How can I help you?|
|“Horns and Hooves,” Ostap Bender on the phone. How can I help you?|
|“Horns and Hooves,” Ostap Bender on the phone. Can I help you?|
Are you currently busy? Politely ask the person to call you back later.
|Could you call back a little later?|
|Try calling back later.|
Was the person wrong with the number? Let him know by using one of the following phrases.
|What number are you calling?|
|What number did you dial?|
|Unfortunately, Mr. Koreiko does not work for us / we do not have an employee with that name.|
|Sorry, you must have got the wrong number.|
|I'm sorry, you have the wrong number.|
|You must have dialed the wrong number.|
There are situations when a person was not mistaken in the number, but his call is unpleasant to you, for example, if he obsessively offers you unnecessary goods or services. How to politely answer an unwanted call?
|Sorry, I'm not interested.|
|I'm sorry, I'm busy right now.|
|We are not interested in your services.|
|Please note that I do not want you to call me.|
How to clarify caller information
Imagine that they called you but didn’t introduce themselves. In this case, you need to avoid pauses in the conversation and immediately clarify who is calling and for what purpose. In this situation, use the following phrases:
|Please, introduce yourself.|
|May I find out who is calling?|
|May I ask who is calling?|
|May I know your name please?|
|Where are you calling from?|
|Could you tell me the purpose of the call?|
|Who are you calling?|
|Who would you like to talk to?|
|Please tell me the name of the person you are calling.|
|What company are you calling from?|
How to ask to connect you with the right person
You call the company, but you get to the secretary or to the general phone number of a large department. In this case, you need to ask the employee to call the person you need to the phone. You can also ask to connect you to the internal phone number of a specific employee. Use these phrases:
|May I speak with Mr. Koreiko?|
|May I speak with Mr. Koreiko, please?|
|May I speak with Mr. Koreiko, please?|
|Can I speak with Mr. Koreiko, please?|
|I would like to speak with Mr. Koreiko, please.|
|Tell me, please, Mr. Koreiko on the spot?|
|Could you connect me with Mr. Koreiko, please?|
|Could you connect me with number 635?|
How to ask to wait for the connection with the right person
And again, the opposite situation - they call your company, and you understand that the other person needs another employee. In this case, you need to ask the person not to hang up and wait for the connection. In a telephone conversation in English, depending on the specifics of your activity, the following phrases are used:
|I will connect you with him.|
|I will connect you.|
|Please stay on the line.|
|One minute please.|
|Please wait and I will connect you to his office.|
|One minute please. I’ll check if Mr. Koreiko can answer the phone.|
|Do you know which line it is (internal telephone)?|
What to do if the connection is bad
Interference on the line is the main phobia of any person who needs to conduct a telephone conversation in English. But do not be discouraged, a few simple phrases will help you deal with this situation. These phrases will help you out in case of technical problems:
|You hear me?|
|I can not hear you.|
|Very bad connection.|
|Could you speak a little louder please?|
|Could you speak a little slower please. I do not speak English very well.|
|Could you speak a little louder please?|
|Sorry, I didn’t quite understand what you told me.|
|I'm sorry, I did not catch you.|
|Could you repeat that?|
|Sorry, I didn’t understand what you said. Could you please repeat?|
|Could you please repeat your last sentence?|
|Sorry, I can’t understand. Could you repeat it again, please?|
|Could you repeat what you said?|
|Did you say Saturday 9am?|
|You said his name is Ostap, right?|
|Please spell it. / Would you mind spelling it?|
|Could you call me back? I think we have communication problems.|
|Let me read what I wrote down from your words (to make sure that it is correct).|
|Let me repeat, to make sure that I understood everything correctly.|
Sometimes it’s not a bad connection, but a call on another line prevents you from talking. If the call on the second line is more important than the call on the first, you can apologize to the interlocutor and ask him to enter your position. Use these phrases:
|Unfortunately, they called me on a different line.|
|Could you wait a moment? I have another call.|
How to make an appointment
If you call a person to schedule an appointment, use the phrase templates below. They sound polite and help you quickly agree with the interlocutor. Use the following phrases to schedule an appointment:
|I would like to arrange a meeting.|
|When is it convenient for you?|
|Are you comfortable next Friday?|
|I can meet you after five hours.|
|I would like to know if you would mind if I visit your office next week?|
|So, at 5:20 on Friday in the office of "Horns and Hooves"?|
How to politely kill a person
In a telephone conversation with a foreign partner or client, it is better not to interrupt the interlocutor, but there are times when this is necessary. You can do this politely using the following phrases:
|Wait a moment! And what's about.|
|Would you mind if I say something now?|
|Sorry to interrupt you, but.|
|Can I add something, please?|
How to ask to tell the person that you called
You called your foreign partners, but the person you need is not there? Ask to inform him about your call and do not forget to leave your contact details. You can politely ask for a call in the following ways:
|Could you please tell him that Ostap Bender from Horn and Hooves called?|
|Could you tell him to call Ostap Bender from Horns and Hooves when he arrives?|
|Please tell him that I’ll call tomorrow.|
|Please tell him that Ostap Bender called. I will call you back at 17:30.|
|Do you have a pen on hand? I don’t think he has my number.|
|Thank! My number is 777-5555, extension 13.|
|Could you ask him to call me back?|
|He can contact me at 777-5555.|
If it’s more convenient for you to call the person yourself, say the following:
|When will he be there?|
|Все в порядке. Я перезвоню позже.|
Как принять сообщение для кого-то
They called you and asked to transfer the phone to a colleague, but is he not in place or is he busy? In this case, you need to politely inform that the person cannot answer the phone and offer to leave a message. At the same time, do not forget to specify the name of the caller, as well as his contact phone number. Learn these phrases:
|I will tell him you called.|
|Can I find out your phone number?|
|What's your phone number?|
|May I accept your message?|
|Anything to pass on to him?|
|I will give him your message.|
|I'm afraid he went out. Would you like to leave a message?|
|Unfortunately, Ostap is not in place. May I find out who is calling?|
|He is at a meeting now. Please tell me who is calling?|
|He is busy at the moment. Could you call back later?|
|Unfortunately, he cannot answer the phone right now.|
|Unfortunately, he is not in the office right now.|
|Unfortunately, he now speaks on a different line.|
|He will be back in 20 minutes.|
|Can I send him some message or ask him to call you back?|
|What would you like to convey to him?|
|I will definitely give him your message.|
You can also ask the other person to call back later using the following phrases for talking on the phone in English:
|Try calling again later.|
|Please call back later.|
How to leave a message on the answering machine
If you dialed only the answering machine, do not rush to hang up. Leave a message so that the person can call you back as soon as he is free. You can leave such a simple message:
|Hello, this is Ostap Bender, I need Mr. Koreiko. Please call me back as soon as you can. My number is 777-5555. Thank.|
What message to record for your answering machine
Do not neglect the answering machine function in your own phone, because this option will allow you not to miss a single important call. Take 5 minutes and write down the plain text for the caller. The text may look as follows.
|Hello, this is Ostap Bender. I'm sorry, but I can’t answer your call right now. Please leave me a message and I will call you back as soon as I can.|
|Thank you for calling. There is no one near the phone who can answer your call. Please leave a message after the beep and I will call you back as soon as I can.|
|Thank you for contacting the Horn and Hoof office. We work from 9am to 9pm Monday through Sunday. Please call us back during business hours or leave a message after a beep.|
Have you successfully talked on the phone, resolved all the issues? Then the time came to say goodbye, and this, too, must be done correctly: without sentiment and politely. You can say goodbye to the person you are talking to:
|It was a pleasure talking with you.|
|I hope I could help you.|
|All the best.|
|Thank you for your call. Goodbye.|
|Thank you for calling. Goodbye.|
|Goodbye, Mr. Koreiko.|
|Goodbye, Mr. Koreiko.|
And to see and hear how a telephone conversation in English looks in practice, we recommend watching the following video:
1. Write a conversation plan in advance
If you are going to call your partner or client abroad, your task is simplified, because you can think in advance what you will talk about, what words and phrases to use. Do not be too lazy to write a short outline of your conversation on paper, so you will not even kill two, but three birds with one stone: study the phrases while writing them, draw up the most accurate and complete conversation plan and save your nerves, because during the conversation you will know what and when to say.