Manners

Sound Like A Winner On The Phone

At Messages On Hold we conduct 95% of our business over the phone, so we’re acutely aware of how important our phone manner is. We know that nothing drops the buying temperature of a lead like a poorly handled phone call. To ensure every person in our company is not just competent on the phone but confident too, we go through rigorous training.

Customer Service Guru & Messages On Hold MD Kym Illman

Customer Service Guru & Messages On Hold MD Kym Illman

So you can start 2014 by offering your customers unwaveringly brilliant service over the phone, we’ve compiled our five most powerful phone techniques.

1) Smile!

Sounds simple, right? If you smile while you’re on the phone, your voice will sound relaxed, friendly and upbeat. Keep in mind that 38% of communication is tone of voice. Over the phone, it’s north of 50%.

2) Eliminate the hanging or…

“Do you want to hold or…” This sounds unprofessional and indecisive. If you can’t provide a second option, drop the ‘or’ altogether.

3) Never say “It’s not my department”

Believe it or not, customers don’t care about how your company is structured. All they care about is who they’re speaking with – you – the representative of the entire company. Instead, try saying “I’ll help you with this” then do the leg work to resolve the issue.

4) Stop placing your hand over the receiver

Your hand is not sound proof. It merely muffles the office sounds as you shuffle papers about your desk, frantically type on a keyboard or worse yet, call out across the office for a colleague. Remedy this by purchasing a soft touch keyboard or using your phone system’s hold button.

5) Have a pen handy

Almost every phone conversation will result in you having to record details of some sort. Telling the caller that you just have to get a pen & pad impresses nobody. Be ready.

That’s it! Implement these rules across your office and notice the difference it makes to how customers respond to you. To find more helpful tips that you can implement right now to sound like a Fortune 500 company, visit Messages On Hold.

If you’d like to share a useful tip, leave a comment on our Facebook page today!

– Lachy

The Art of Answering the Phone

Answering a phone – pretty simple, right? Wrong! As one of the most common business tools, it’s often the one that’s taken for granted. That fact is only a small percentage of businesses actually train their staff to use the phone correctly. I’m not talking about holding the handset in a certain way or perfecting a dialing technique, I’m talking about the words and tone they use while on the phone.

Will you answer the call to good phone manners?

Will you answer the call to good phone manners?

At Messages On Hold, the telephone is our bread & butter. And because we do business over the phone, every employee who joins our team undergoes a thorough and complete phone training session as part of their induction. This training focuses on the words & tone they use while on the phone, as well as helpful phone techniques such as barging & transferring a call and placing a call on hold.

So, what are our top tips for improving the way you use your most powerful business tool? Read on to find out!

Answering The Phone

Bad Practice: “Hi thanks for calling, (your name) speaking”

Good Practice: “Thanks for calling (company name) this is (your name).”

To help the caller confirm they’ve called the right company, say your company’s name. And there’s no need to say ‘speaking’ after your name – they can already determine this.

Returning From Hold

Bad Practice: “Are you there?!”

Good Practice: “Thanks for holding, (client name).”

If the caller isn’t there, they can’t answer your question. Thank the caller for holding and continue with your conversation or just leap right in with what you’re returning to tell them.

The Hanging Or…

Bad Practice: “Can I take a message orrr…”

Good Practice: “Would you like to hold or shall I take a message?”

The hanging ‘or’ sounds unprofessional; if you don’t have another option just drop the ‘or’. You’ll sound more decisive.

Calling Back

Bad Practice: “Sure, I’ll call you back later today.”

Good Practice: “Sure, I’ll call you back at 2:42 this afternoon.”

Later today isn’t specific and does nothing to ensure the person you’re going to call back will be ready for your call. By providing them with a specific time (and keeping to it!) you’ll appear more committed and they’ll know to be ready.

There you have it! Use these lines effectively and you’ll have a real edge over your competitors while leaving a positive impact on your callers. The quicker you put these ideas into practice, the quicker you’ll reap the rewards.

– Lachy