With how much modern communication takes place on a screen, proper telephone manners often falls away. Texts, emails, online chats and social media are so popular. Since voice contact still accounts for a large daily part of business, professional call centers value a respectful approach talking to customers on the phone. Good call centers are built from the way they conduct themselves on the phone. You need a unique set of skills and adherence to guidelines.
First Impressions Count
Call center agents are not only ensuring that calls get answered quickly, but also serving as first contact between the brand they represent and the customer. As the saying goes, you only get one chance to make a first impression. You need to put your best foot forward when the phone rings. Since many people hang up if their call goes unanswered within five or six rings, you need to answer the phone quickly. That way, you will not lose possible clients and give the indication that the company is slow or does not care.
Polite and Friendly Call Centers
Keep in mind that the client’s experience with you will form their first opinion of the company you represent. Adopt a polite and informative disposition and pair it with a helpful, confident tone. Conversing on the phone is different than face-to-face or online communication. There is no visible body language or facial expressions that one can use to help get one’s point across. You also do not get as much time to form a response.
Professional phone conversations hinge on the manner in which you conduct your tone of voice. Remember, what you say is as important as how you say it.
Know Your Stuff
Make sure you know what you plan to say before each call. You will find it useful to take the guesswork out of the equation with standardized greetings. They will feel welcome, appreciated, and reassured. Then, you can pay attention to what the customer says and provide assistance where you can. If they need to be transferred to another department, be certain that you make the right connection and introduce the customer by explaining their concerns so that they do not have to repeat their story to the next person.
Permission to Hold
We have all been there – your call finally gets picked up, only to immediately be banished to “hold purgatory” with nary a word. It is disappointing, confusing, and aggravating. If you answer the phone under less-than-ideal circumstances and absolutely need to put the caller on hold right away, always ask first. As long as you answer politely, thank them for calling, and ask respectfully if they would not mind holding, most people are willing to wait a few extra moments to receive your undivided attention. They will not wait forever though, so try not to leave them on hold for longer than 45 seconds.
The Right Ending
When the call is coming to an end, remain warm and patient and refrain from rushing the customer off the line. Once you have asked if you can provide any further assistance, thank the customer for their call and use their name to firmly establish a personal connection as you wish them all the best for the rest of their day. Finally, do not terminate the call until the customer hangs up. By practicing proper phone etiquette, you can help to create a long-lasting relationship between company and customer.
At KPI Connect we have trained all our staff in proper phone etiquette to be sure that they are representing your brand with the out-most respect to your customers.