Do you know how you sound on the phone? Probably not. While some people may think they sound professional and helpful, others may hear something entirely different. Unless you are routinely listening to yourself, you may never know how professional, or not at all, you are.
If you work at a professional call center like SAS, phone manner training is an integral part of your job. You can count on management to review your calls and give you pointers on how to be Ms. Susy Sunshine in every transaction, even when callers are trying to rain on your parade. Below are the top 4 most important tips to get you sounding amazing on any phone call:
- Smile before you pick up the phone. Research shows that when we smile, there is a change in brain activity resulting in a happier mood. You don’t even have to be smiling for real. Faking it has the same effect! And did you know that the way you smile affects your tone of voice? Uh-huh. So, when you pick up the phone, smile. The caller will definitely “hear” it!
- Work on your enunciation, which is a fancy way of saying speak clearly. Practice saying “The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain.” Make it a point to appropriately stress each word’s syllables, and consonant and vowel sounds. This makes a big difference while on a headset, speaker phone, or on a cell where the connection might not be so hot.
- Remember basic etiquette. Good morning, afternoon, evening, etc. How are you today? How is everything going? Good to hear from you! How can I help you? What can I do for you? Would you mind…? Would you please…? Thanks for calling! It was good talking with you. I really appreciate your help. Have a great morning, afternoon, evening, etc. You get the idea.
- Be a great listener. In customer service, listening is way more important than talking. What is the caller really saying? What can you discern by their tone of voice? Listen closely not only to capture details that will help you solve their dilemma, but also for clues about their mood, the urgency of their needs, etc.