How Should Receptionists Answer The Phone?
5 Easy Steps to Flawless Phone Answering
How to answer the phone professionally, sound like a receptionist, and impress your callers—at all times!
Picture this: The flu hit the office, and most of the crew’s homesick, including the receptionist.
You and your healthy teammates are facing double the usual workload, and although you’re up for the challenge, one question looms:
“Who’s going to answer the phone calls?”
You find yourself wondering… how does a receptionist take the call anyway?
As the boss mutters something about signing up for that phone answering service, it happens — the phone rings, and by chance, you’re standing closest to it.
Your colleagues are now looking at you. Do you have what it takes?
Follow these five steps to flawless phone answering success:
Greet your caller/ customers graciously.
“Hello” doesn’t cut it. Begin with something nice like “Thank you for calling XYZ company,” end with a “How may I help you?” and be sure to slip your company’s name. Above all, be positive always when talking to your customers!
Mind your manners.
You may be new to being a receptionist, but if you’re nice, no one will notice. Ask for information rather than demanding it, as in “May I say who is calling?” and “May I have your name?” Throw “please” and “thank you” in there as much as possible. Please take note, everybody likes being treated with respect, and the happier the callers are, the happier you are going to be!
Deflect with style.
Here’s a little secret every great call center knows: it’s not about having the response to every question, it’s about knowing what to say when you don’t know. “Let me find out for you” and “Let me connect you with the best person to help you” are excellent answers, whereas “I don’t know” is not so much.
Avoid dead ends.
Often offer to take a message or pass the caller to voicemail when you are unable to contact the person your caller is seeking. Likewise, never ask your caller to leave a message. It's inconvenient and off-putting. It’s as easy as this: “John’s in a meeting. May I take a message?” There’s always a way to work in a positive spin!
Keep calm and carry on.
Mistakes - it’s impossible not to make mistakes sometimes. Our expert virtual receptionists have discovered that with friendliness, almost every flub can be remedied. Being a receptionist is by no means an easy job, but you're a human interacting with another person at the end of the day. A personal touch is a secret to flawlessly answering the phone! Be kind, be courteous, and be yourself, and you're sure to strike out of the park with every curveball.
By Jeffreymendel Jeffrey Nash - Own work, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=50308966
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