Can you hear me now? 4 Ways to Handle Workplace Phone Calls - Hearing and Speech Agency

Can you hear me now? 4 Ways to Handle Workplace Phone Calls

On the phone, you serve as a voice. You are your own voice (obviously), but you are also the voice of your organization. A positive or negative phone call can shift a caller’s perspective about an entire organization. Strive to be the reason someone calls again, not the reason they call another business.


Follow these tips for successful phone interactions at work:

1. When leaving a voicemail message, repeat yourself.

Say your name at least twice, say your phone number at least twice. Speak clearly. Don’t make the person you are calling have to replay your entire message because you rushed. Furthermore, do not ramble on and on. Say who you are (twice), a short sentence about why you’re calling, and how to reach you (twice). 

A good voicemail may sound like this:

“Good morning, this is Lauren Albers from HASA. I am calling to set up next month’s ASL class at your location. Please give me a call back at 410.318.6780. Again, this is Lauren at HASA and you can reach me at 410.318.6780.”


2. Respect business hours.

Even if you check emails and take calls from your personal phone, do not assume the same of others. Of course, emergencies do happen outside of working hours, but be sure to consider what may be an emergency for you that is not urgent for the person you are calling. If you can manage the situation until the office opens, wait to call until then.


3. Know when it is appropriate to call vs. email.

Certain matters can be handled with a quick email, especially if they are simple and not time-sensitive. Other conversations should take place over the phone, especially if they are urgent or contain sensitive information. Knowing when a call is appropriate instead of an email (and vice versa) saves time and ensures that all matters are handled effectively and efficiently


4. Know when to transfer, put a caller on hold, or schedule a call for a later time.

Sometimes a person calls your office, asks for you, and reaches you immediately. Most of the time, someone will call with a particular need, and the automated answering system or customer service representative will transfer them to you. If you can help them, great! If not, know your options and when to use each of them.

Some calls can be handled by transferring them to a different department. For example, if someone calls Accounting wanting to make a Clinic Appointment, I can help them easily by transferring them to the clinic upstairs.

Other calls may require you to search for information. If you can find the information within 1-2 minutes, it may help to the caller on hold. Politely ask the caller if they mind being placed on hold while you gather what you need. If they say yes, do what you need to and get back to the call as quickly as possible.

Finally, some calls are just too much to handle on the spot. Maybe the phone rang as you were preparing to leave for a meeting or right at the end of the day. If this is the case, schedule a better time for the call. Make sure to specify who will call whom, at what time, and what you need to discuss. This way, you can be prepared and block out time on your schedule to handle the call


Overall, err on the side of caution. If you aren’t sure if it’s too late to call, wait. If you don’t know if you repeated your phone number slowly enough, say it one more time. If you aren’t sure how to handle a caller, put them on hold, take a deep breath, and figure out your solution.

Hearing and Speech AgencyHarry and Jeanette Weinberg Building 5900 Metro Drive Baltimore, MD 21215 410.318.6780