Answering the phone professionally is an essential skill in any business or workplace. It can make a significant impact on the customer’s perception of your organization and set the tone for the entire conversation.
However, learning how to answer the phone professionally is not always easy, especially if you are not used to taking business calls. In this article, we are discussing 10 best practices and tips to help you with your next phone call.
How to Answer the Phone Professionally in Any Situation
1. Be Prepared
Before answering the phone, take a moment to prepare yourself. Take a deep breath and clear your mind of distractions. You want to be present and ready to provide excellent customer service.
In addition, being prepared can also mean having any necessary information or resources readily available to help the caller. This could include information about customer accounts or contact information for other people or departments within the company.
2. Answer Promptly
When the phone rings, answer it right away. Do not let it ring more than three times. This allows you the opportunity to gain control of the conversation, which can be especially beneficial if the caller is upset or frustrated.
By answering promptly, you are sending a message that the caller’s time is valuable and their call matters to you.
3. Greet the Caller Professionally
When answering the phone, it is important to greet the caller professionally. Use a standard greeting, such as “Thank you for calling [company name], this is [your name]. How may I assist you?” or “Good morning/afternoon, thank you for calling [company name], this is [your name].”
Using a standard greeting helps to ensure consistency across all calls.
4. Smile and Speak Clearly
According to an article by PsychologyToday.com, research shows the act of smiling can trick your mind into happiness by how you move the muscles in your face. Keep this in mind when you answer the phone, and make your best effort to maintain a positive attitude.
Additionally, enunciate your words and speak clearly and at a moderate pace. You don’t want to convey to the caller that you are in a rush to get off the call.
5. Identify Yourself and Your Company
After greeting the caller, identify yourself and your company. This will let them know who they are speaking with and confirm that they have reached the correct organization.
Introducing yourself and the company at the beginning of a call helps to create a positive and professional impression from the start.
6. Practice Active Listening
When the caller starts speaking, listen carefully and do not interrupt or try to rush them off the phone.
Remember that active listening means not only hearing what the caller is saying but also attempting to understand their needs and concerns.
7. Speak Positively
When communicating with the caller, use positive language. Avoid negative words or phrases, such as “I can’t” or “I don’t know.” Instead, use phrases like “Let me find out” or “I will do my best to assist you.” This will show the caller that you are committed to finding a solution.
According to a study by HubSpot, 93% of customers are inclined to make repeat purchases from companies that prioritize excellent customer service. Therefore, by learning how to answer the phone professionally, you can make a positive impression on your callers and increase your likelihood of repeat business.
8. Take Notes
Don’t forget to take notes during the call. This is beneficial for both the caller and the person answering the phone.
When you take notes during a call, you can easily refer back to them later to ensure that you have all the information you need. This is helpful if the caller has a difficult issue or multiple concerns. Additionally, note-taking shows the caller that you are attentive and engaged in the conversation.
9. End the Call Professionally
Ending the call on a positive note is important to ensure the caller is satisfied with their experience and leaves with a good impression of your company. In addition to asking if you’ve answered all the customer’s questions, you can summarize the steps taken during the call to make sure that you are both on the same page.
When ending the call, thank the caller for contacting your company. For example, close the conversation by saying something like “Thank you for calling [company name]. Have a great day!”
10. Follow Up When Necessary
After the call, follow up with the caller if necessary. This may involve sending an email or making another phone call to provide more information or follow up on an issue. Doing so demonstrates that you are committed to providing great customer service and are willing to go above and beyond to help them.
Improve Your Customer Service With an Answering Service Partner
Knowing how to answer the phone professionally is an essential part of providing excellent customer service. By following these tips and best practices, you can create a positive impression on your callers and provide them with the help they need.
If you are a business owner looking to improve your customer service, consider working with a telephone answering service like AnswerNet. Outsourcing your calls to a professional and experienced partner allows you to have peace of mind knowing that your customers are in capable hands. So don’t hesitate to take the first step. Reach out to us at 866-473-1749 or click the button below to request a customized, no-obligation price quote.