how to answer the phone

How to Answer the Phone for Your Business

How to Answer the Phone for Your Business – 5 Fun Tips!

how to answer the phone dog Why is the Phone Answering Process Important?

Whether you’re new to answering work phones, have phone anxiety, or simply want to get more insight to the importance of having a solid phone answering process, this article is sure to give you some helpful tips on how to answer the phone in an effective way.

Answering your work phone may seem like something you don’t have to think much about. However, this is far from the truth. When someone calls your work, your phone conversation is essentially the caller’s very first impression of your business. In a world where many people communicate through email and text, it’s important to remember how to answer the phone.

Additionally, all of these tips can be applied if you’re working at a company or working from home. For more helpful work from home tips, read our Guide to Working From Home!

1. Only Use a Positive Tone on the Phone

Our first tip addresses the most crucial aspect on how to answer the phone- tone. Have you ever called a business and had someone answer the phone in a way where you felt like you were annoying, disturbing, or putting them out? If you have, you most likely felt like you were a burden or nuisance. Use experience as an example of what you’re most definitely NOT supposed to do when answering the phone. The caller could be an existing client, a potential new client, a future employee, or your boss’s spouse. In any case, you want to make a positive lasting impression.

When answering your work phone, always use a positive and professional tone. We encourage you to actually smile when speaking over the phone. The caller may not be able to see you, but studies have shown that you can actually tell when someone is smiling through their tone of voice.

You may be reading this and thinking to yourself, “really, I have to smile?” Yes. The answer is 100% yes. Sorry grumpy bears, but smiling even when you don’t feel like smiling really is not a lot to ask. Not only that, if you’re having a rough day, smiling can actually make you feel better. The expression ‘Fake it until you make it’ is a wonderful and effective way to achieve an optimistic outlook.In any case, maintaining a positive tone no matter the circumstances will contribute exponentially to how the caller will perceive your business. So, perk up sunshine!

cat answering phone2. You Can Make or Break a Caller’s Day with the Words You Say

Now that we’ve covered tone, let’s move onto what you actually say when you pick up the phone. It’s important to immediately introduce yourself and the company you work for. Do not just answer the phone “hello?” This gives the caller zero information as to who they’re talking to or what business they’re calling. Instead, answer the phone (while smiling, of course) and say “Hi this is *your name* with *your company* how may I help you this *time of day (morning, afternoon, evening)*. You can re-work this greeting to whatever matches your speaking style best as long as you are introducing yourself and the company you are representing from the get-go and lastly, are maintaining professionalism, of course.

With that being said, it’s absolutely paramount that you maintain a professional tone throughout the conversation. Try to avoid slang and definitely avoid any language you’d use at a bar with your closest friends. Instead of saying things like “Yeah, I don’t know” say “Let me find out for you.” These small but impactful changes in your language can greatly affect how the caller perceives your business.

3. Listen Up Buttercup

Our next topic on how to answer the phone is listening. We all know that there is a big difference between hearing someone and actually listening to someone. When someone calls your business, give them your full attention. You may be tempted to multitask, especially if it’s a busy workday. We get it – you have a lot going on. Your boss is pressing you for that assignment you completely forgot about and your mom keeps texting you and asking what cookies mean on ‘the interweb.’ The truth is that multitasking will only distract you from the call and potentially frustrate the caller. In other words, refrain from multitasking at all costs and do your very best to focus on the caller.

We recommend taking notes on every call to ensure that you’re focused. Detailed notes will also only help you in the future. When someone knows that they are being listened to, it establishes a sense of trust and credibility. On the other hand, if you’re typing away, fumbling around in your drawer for that pen you lost, or the worst of them all- eating, the caller may feel unimportant and will take their business elsewhere.

dog answering phone4. Dethrone Your Speakerphone

Another tip on how to answer the phone is to avoid using your speakerphone. Your speakerphone picks up much more background noise than a normal call does. Chances are, the caller doesn’t want to hear the ambulance driving by or your coworker talking about her failed attempt to talk her way out of a speeding ticket. Not only that, the caller may be able to tell that they are on speakerphone and can feel as if your conversation isn’t private. In any case, we recommend using your speakerphone as seldom as possible.

business dog 5. Speak Like A Human- Not a Robot

Lastly, try your very best not to sound like a robot. Chances are, if you’re reading this, you’re a human being. With that being said, congratulations! You already have an incredible advantage on this tip. On a more serious note, it’s easy to sound robotic, especially if you’re saying the same phrases over and over again throughout the day. You can avoid sounding like a robot by genuinely engaging with the caller. This can be as simple as asking them how their day is and as in-depth as telling the caller your company’s culture values or business model.

Remember, the caller is calling to speak to a person, not an automation. Many company websites, your company possibly included, have options to contact someone via a form fill. If someone is calling your business, it means that they would rather talk to someone than interact with a piece of technology. Keep this in mind when you find yourself systematically repeating your phrases.

dog telephone
Summary of How to Answer the Phone:

1. Only Use a Positive Tone on the Phone
Smile, smile, and smile some more. The caller can hear your cheerful mood.

2. You Can Make or Break a Caller’s Day with the Words You Say
The words and verbiage you use are important. Be as professional as possible.

3. Listen Up Buttercup
Give your full attention to the caller and do not multitask.

4. Speak Like A Human- Not a Robot
Genuinely engage with the caller and don’t get caught up in systematically speaking.

We hope you’ve gained some great insight to how to answer the phone for your business, or at the very least, exhaled out of your nostrils at some of our cheesy jokes. Remember, answering the phone may seem like any other mundane task, but it can greatly impact your business or the company you work for. For more wonderful business pointers, check out our blog!