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Effective telephone communication is vital to the success of your business. Interacting with customers can be a frustrating experience if you don’t know the proper telephone etiquette. With a smile on your voice and the right techniques, however, these interactions can be enjoyable and profitable. Learning these skills is easy when you know why they are important.
Good telephone skills retain customers. People are more likely to do business with you again if your telephone conversations with them are pleasant and helpful. If you provide a frustrating telephone experience, customers are more likely to do business elsewhere.
Gain New Customers
Word of mouth is a powerful form of advertising for your business. If your customer senses that you care about her needs, she will tell her friends about your business; however, she will tell her friends if she senses you don't value her as a customer, and her bad experience will cost you new customers.
You can easily exceed your customer’s expectations with good telephone skills. Customers often call a place of business with a problem; they expect a fight. You will catch your customer off guard when you are pleasant, calm and helpful and will create a pleasant impression of your company.
Avoid Repeat Calls
If you hate talking on the phone, the best thing to do is avoid repeat callers. Effective listening and problem-solving skills ensure your customers don’t have to call repeatedly to get issues resolved. Less phone calls for you means more time to spend on other important aspects of your business.
Create a Positive Atmosphere
A positive opening sets the stage for a positive customer experience. A warm, inviting greeting and enthusiastic tone tells the caller he is not an interruption. Instead of giving him the impression that he is wasting your time, your tone can make him feel like he is the most important person to you at that moment.
Leave a Lasting Impression
Ending your call properly helps the caller feel valued and avoids miscommunication. Quickly summarize the steps that were taken during the call and ask if the caller needs any additional assistance. This shows your desire to make sure she is satisfied with your interaction. End by thanking her for her business to show that she is appreciated.
Telephone skills help to calm a caller down when he is upset. Knowing how to use tone and empathy shows your willingness to partner with the caller to solve his problem. If you speak softly and don’t interrupt the caller, your interaction is likely to go more smoothly and result in a satisfactory outcome for both of you.
Become Known for Immediate Action
Callers hate delays. With effective telephone skills, you can gain a reputation for solving problems quickly. Enjoy a successful telephone interaction by learning to communicate your willingness to assist and your ability to meet the caller’s needs quickly.
Cut Through Confusion
With effective listening skills, you can cut through confusion and adequately understand the situation. Listen without interrupting. This makes the customer feel valuable and makes it easier to satisfy customer complaints.
Effective telephone skills put you in a better position to sell additional products to your customer. He will be more receptive to what you have to offer if you are friendly, enthusiastic and eager to solve his problems.
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- Telephone Courtesy and Customer Service; Lloyd C. Finch; 2000
- Achieving Excellence Through Customer Service; John Tschohl; 1996?