Tuesday, March 4, 2008

"Tips on handling telephone calls"

"Good Telephone Habits for Everyone"

Whether answering the phone or making phone calls, using the proper etiquette is a must in order to maintain a certain level of professionalism. Proper etiquette leaves callers with a favorable impression of you in general.

You'll also find that others treat you with more respect and are willing to go out of their way to assist you if you use the proper etiquette.

"Answering Your Phone"

*Answer your calls within three rings (if possible).
*Always identify yourself when you answer the phone: "This is ______."
*Speak in a pleasant tone of voice - the caller will appreciate it.
*Learn to listen actively and listen others without interrupting.
*When you are out of the office or away from your desk for more than a few minutes, forward your phone to voicemail.
*Use the hold button when leaving a line so that the caller does not accidentally overhear conversations being held nearby.
*If the caller has reached a wrong number, be courteous. Sometimes a caller is transferred all over campus with a simple question and the caller gets frustrated. If possible, take the time to find out where they should be calling/to whom they should be speaking.

"Making Calls"

*When you call someone and they answer the phone, do not say "Who am I speaking with?" without first identifying yourself: "This is _______. To whom am I speaking?"
*Always know and state the purpose of the communication.
*When you reach a wrong number, don't argue with the person who answered the call or keep them on the line. Say: "I'm sorry, I must have the wrong number. Please excuse the interruption." And then hang up.
*If you told a person you would call at a certain time, call them as you promised. If you need to delay the conversation, call to postpone it, but do not make the other person wait around for your call.
*If you don't leave a number/message for someone to call you back, don't become angry if they are not available when you call again.
*Keep in mind the Golden Rule when it comes to phone etiquette. Don't make people dread having to answer their phone or call your department.

"How to End Conversations Gracefully"

There are several ways that you can end a long phone call without making up a story or sounding rude:

*Leave the conversation open.
*Promise to finish your discussion at another time.
*End on an "up" note.
*Tell the person how much you've enjoyed speaking with him/her.

As long as you are honest and polite with the other person, you shouldn't have any problems getting off the phone and onto something else.

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