Business Telephone Etiquette

What is business telephone etiquette? This page gives some Business Telephone Etiquette Tips (Business Phone Etiquette) for the elegant woman at work. Discussions about the proper phone etiquette in business, the all-too-common scenarios, and how to have professional telephone manners.


Business Telephone Etiquette Tips

How To Answer the Phone Properly

  • Do not just answer with "Hello" and pause for the other person to reply.

  • If you work in a professional company, the proper phone etiquette is to answer with the company's name first, "Bloomingdale's, Good morning!" or "Harris Medical Devices, Good morning, this is kelly." or "Loreal, Good afternoon, this is Blair."

  • If company name is not required to use in greetings, you may answer the phone with "Jessica Madden speaking".

  • If someone else is answering your telephone, you may instruct him or her to say, "Good afternoon, this is Elizabeth Arden's office, how may I help you?" or "Good afternoon this is Elizabeth Arden's office,"

Important Business Phone Etiquette

Speaker phone: It is good telephone manners to tell the caller that he is on the speaker phone.

If you sense that you're on a speakerphone, you may request, "Am I on speakerphone? Is this a good time to talk?"

Business Telephone Etiquette Tips

Speaking Properly

  1. Take note of your voice. Speak clearly, otherwise, call back another time.

  2. Do not be eating, talking at the same time.

  3. Always be courteous.

  4. If you are about to cough or sneeze, do not answer a ringing phone. There is caller ID these days, I don't see too many reasons why you can't call back.

  5. If you clear your throat more than once, ask to hold for some water, or call back when you have rectified the problem.

  6. Do not raise your voice.

  7. When on an overseas call, there is somethings a lag between when the person speaks to when you finally 'hear' it. So wait for the person to finish speaking before you begin.

  8. When you are making a call, it is good business phone etiquette to always identify yourself to the first recipient - basically whoever picks up the phone.

  9. "This is Mary kate, May I speak to Nicole Richie please?"

  10. If you picked up the phone asking for you, you may reply, "This is Nicole."

  11. If the call is not for you, you usually answer with these options, "Just one moment please", "May I take down a message?", "May I take down a message and a telephone number?", "Or shall I ask her to call you back?"

  12. It is not good telephone manners to say "She is not in" without giving a reason. You may not want to give the real reason but at least say, "She is in a meeting right now."

Frequently Asked Questions

Should you ask who is calling?

For safety reasons, do.

Is it rude? It is a little, but ask nicely, "May I tell her who's calling?".

Business Telephone Etiquette Tips

Other Professional Business Telephone Tips

Do not chat or have lengthy personal calls on the business phone.

People can hear you, get annoyed by the chatter and it never makes a good impression.

When you get a wrong number, don't ask, "What number is this?"

Instead, call back and if the same person answers, you'll know it is the wrong number.

Do not leave any caller on hold for more than a minute.

Bad Business Telephone Etiquette

Don't carry simultaneous conversation with someone in the room and someone on the telephone.

I know it happens a lot, especially people just barge into your office and talks to you regardless because they think their message is more important than your phone call.

Put one hand up to signal wait, or turn your back around to that person.

Alternatively, I've found a rather effective method is to push a pencil and notepad to let the person leave a message.

When I'm at the receiving end of the phone call and I notice my caller having simultaneous conversations, I get very annoyed and find it hard to concentrate. Usually I politely insist for him/her to call me back when they are done. That usually helps the other person focus on your phone call, which is the business phone etiquette anyway.

You might also be interested in:

Cell Phone Manners
Business Email Etiquette
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