Answering the phone professionally in your facility can really make a difference in how your families and potential customers perceive your facility and the services you provide.
There are a few very simple tips that can help you make calling into your facility is a good experience.
It is not convenient or pleasant to be kept waiting. Regardless of whether a call has to be put on hold or whether information has to be found, be quick about it. If it will take longer than a few seconds, it is better to take the person’s information and call them back after you’ve found what you need to answer their questions. Of course, also be sure that your return call to them is done quickly as well.
Rule of thumb? Answer your phone within three rings.
Everyone person who answers your business phone represents your facility. Even if you have a relaxed, family atmosphere in your office and the person on the other end is knows your facility well, maintain professionalism. Don’t joke in appropriately or use slang or buzzwords that may be unfamiliar to your callers.
Negativity is as contagious as positivity so opt for the latter. You may even e able to brighten someone else’s day with your positive tone. It doesn’t matter how chaotic the office is, be consistently positive when answering the phone or you may find that potential and existing customers are being chased away.
Identify yourself and your organization so callers know they’ve reached the right place and can make accurate references later if necessary. Speak clearly, concisely and politely. Always ask what you can help them with so that you give them an easy point to kick of the conversation.
It is important to your facility’s reputation for each person who answers the phone to be sharp and efficient. Be engaged in the call and not distracted by what is taking place in the office so that you understand requests completely and provide accurate information quickly. If there is something you cannot provide or someone else who could answer the questions more accurately, then let the caller know this and do what you can to get the right person in touch with them and to get back with them with the information they need quickly.
By their very nature, incoming phone calls are unpredictable. Don’t let this be your office’s weakness. By being prompt, positive, clear, professional and knowledgeable you can get every call that your office receives off to a good start.
Photo Credit: © All rights reserved by James Cage