18 January 2012
Phone Impressions - Do AND Do Not - There is no try
Have you ever had such a cringe worthy phone conversation with a
person that you flinch every time their number comes up on caller
ID. In a society where telephones are everywhere -in fact somebody
took my IPhone from me to make me finish this article - it can be
hard to distinguish between talking to the person sitting next to
you and the person on the other side of the world.
What we sometimes forget is the amount of information that does
and does not transmit over this not so new fangled technology and
how messages are perceived at the other end.
Here are some handy dos and don'ts on making a first impression
over the phone.
- Don't nod. I can't hear you nodding. To show you agree, try
saying yes or okay.
- Don't eat. A it's gross and B I'll be more concerned with
working out what you're chewing on then what you're doing
- It's a strange social rule but also fairly commonly accepted.
Don't pick up the phone before the first couple of rings. It's like
cutting the music half way through the time warp.
- Do - Always return phone calls in a timely fashion. If you have
bad news, take the band aide approach. If you have no news it's
good to stay in touch just to let the other person know you haven't
- Do - Make a list of things you need to speak about if the
conversation is long or complicated
- Do - Have a pen or pencil ready
- Do - Pronounce clearly when it's important - Spell if it's
- Give the name of your company and your title - Cryptic is weird
and may result in a call back fail whale
- Do - Start professional and friendly. You can also become more
casual but it is almost impossible to shift somebody's perception
of you from too casual to professional.