The statistics show that the majority of people still prefer a phone call over all the other means of communication. This is why it might be crucial for your business and job to be successful at handling phone calls. In this article we will try to cover some simple call handling procedures that will help you create a positive environment.
Answer your phone quickly. The client calling might feel you have an unprofessional approach if your phone is ringing for too long and you are not picking up. One of the best call handling procedures would be to try to pick up the phone at the second or third ring.
Introduce yourself and greet the caller. Welcoming the caller with some polite greeting may set a positive tone for the whole conversation and stating the company name and your personal name may confirm to the caller that he has reached the right person or at least the right company. Say those opening words clearly and don’t rush through saying them, even though you might repeat them many times through your work day when handling phone calls.
Listen carefully to the caller and try not to multitask. The customer might feel unappreciated if he senses that you are doing other tasks while talking with him. Hence, try to stay focused and listen to the caller. If the caller requires some assistance or help that might take a while to complete, ask him first if he would like to wait or to be called back once that specific task is completed.
Set the expectations to the caller. If you need to transfer his call to another person, then make sure to notify the caller about that and, if possible, even announce the person to whom that call is going to be transferred. If you need to put the caller on hold, say that. Don’t just put him on hold without saying anything. People will find that rude.
Offer to help. Even if the call was intended for some other operator or the manager, offer to help the caller. They might appreciate the offer even if they decide not to take on it. This will show a positive image about you and your company.
Use the client’s name. During the conversation do not address the customer as “Dear client” or “Dear customer”, because the caller might think you didn’t want to bother yourself with remembering his name. If the caller introduced himself and stated his name, then use it.
Show empathy to the client for the issues they are experiencing. If the caller complains about some issues or problems he has either related directly to your company and you or to some third party, try to show some empathy. If needed, try to re-insure the caller that you will do your best to have such an issue resolved and follow by a polite “I’m sorry to hear about those issues” phrase.
Do not use slang words while handling phone calls. Even if you use such words frequently in your internal communication or private texting with friends, try to cut them off in business communication and keep the professional tone at all times. The customer may not take you seriously if you start using the slang language and may see that as a lack of professionalism.
Use positive phrasing even if you can’t help the caller. This approach should still set a positive mood for the client and create a nice environment in which the caller will try to see things from the bright end as well.
Close the call formally. If you have agreed to do some task for the caller, then repeat it before closing the call just to confirm to the client that you will definitely address their issues or concerns. At the very end of that call, close it with a formal “Good bye and have a great day” or just “Good bye” if there is a possibility you will speak to each other later on that day again.
Treat every call as an opportunity to improve your standing with a customer and remember that an average person will tell their negative experience to a lot more people than a positive experience. With this in mind, it is of utmost importance to handle your communication with clients at a highly professional level and keep your customers happy.