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6 Tips for Business Phone Etiquette

Updated: May 16, 2018

Are You Hitting the Mark on Professionalism?

Good phone etiquette is important for anyone in the professional world. It can make the difference between completing a sale and falling just short of a lead’s expectations. It can help to improve your company's professional appearance, and it can enable you to provide better customer support to the current clients who keep your business running. In this article, we will review a few of the most important phone etiquette tips that you can use every day.

1. Identify Yourself and Your Organization at the Start of the Phone Call

Thanks to caller ID, many people have fallen out of the habit of identifying themselves at the beginning of personal calls. However, in the professional world, stating your name and the organization you work for is always an appropriate way to start calls. Depending on the circumstance and whether or not you know the person you are calling, you may also wish to share your job title and any other information that would be helpful or relevant.

2. Be Conscientious of Your Tone

One reason why phone conversations can be more challenging than other kinds of communication is because people rely heavily on facial expressions and body language to convey meaning when we are speaking. These factors are absent in a phone conversation, which makes your tone of voice especially important. A good tip for achieving a friendly, cheerful tone? Smile frequently, even though the person you are speaking with can’t see!

3. Have a Mental Agenda for the Call

Keeping in mind the topics you plan to address during the course of your phone call will help you stay on track, and ensure that your call is effective and efficient.

4. Give Every Caller Your Full Attention

For busy professionals, it can be quite tempting to multitask while on the phone. However, many studies have shown that our brains simply don’t have the RAM to be good at multitasking. If you work in this way, you will likely give the person on the phone a less informative and positive conversation that you could have otherwise offered.

5. Manage Holds Attentively

No one likes being left on hold. However, sometimes, the need to look up information, consult with co-workers, or answer another urgent call leaves you no other choice. If this does happen, you should be very clear with your caller that you will be back on the line with them shortly. Experts also recommend checking back in with that person every minute or so to assure them that you’re still there and that you’re still keeping them in mind.

6. Use the Caller’s Name

We all like hearing the sound of our own name. Using the caller’s name is a great way to build trust and rapport, which is always important in the professional world.

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