Unless businesses and organizations learn to properly train their staff on the productive use of mobile phones, this means of communication (which is a major blessing to the business world) may also bring down our productivity at the workplace.
Most people today have a mobile phone. In fact, many people can’t imagine how they ever got along without a portable phone. Millions of phones have taken over the world. On the average, most individuals have two or more phones and they use these phones at least ten times a day.
You would have noticed however that many people complain about mobile phone users. People complain about other people loudly discussing personal matters in public places. They complain when mobile phones ring in movie theatres and concert halls. They complain about people driving too slow, and not paying attention to where they are going because they are talking on their phone. And they complain about people walking around talking to people who aren’t there.
Whenever a new communications technology becomes popular, it changes the way society is organized. As such, society has to invent rules for the polite way to use the new devices. Our social etiquette, our rules of politeness for both business phone calls and personal ones is now a necessary mandate.
Tips for Business Phone Calls
Since our ‘rules of politeness for cell phones’ is still evolving, corporate organizations have to pay much attention to the way their staff represents them on the phone. Do not commit the fatal mistake of exposing your valuable prospects to a staff that is untrained on phone etiquette.
Phone etiquette involves complete dignity and humility right from saying the first hello to finally hanging up. During this process, a prospect can be converted into a client and a client can be converted into a loyalist.
Calling & answering phone calls during office hours should be handled tactically and professionally.
Calling a Client
- Firstly, make sure the time is appropriate
- Identify the company and yourself immediately and speak clearly and confidently. This grabs the client’s attention without causing irritation
- Always hang up courteously. You definitely don’t want to have an upset client getting back to you
- Answering the phone:
- Always answer the telephone promptly and give the caller a patient hearing plus a prompt solution. This leaves the client satisfied, saves time and money by preventing the need for a physical visit to the client
Often, it is the correct etiquette to inform others at the beginning of the meeting that you are expecting an important call and get their permission.
Personal Phone Calls
Though people use the cell phones a lot, many people do not know the various etiquettes associated with cell phone use. Knowing these etiquettes will help the person to be able to use the phone more effectively without causing a problem to any other person.
If you have a personal mobile phone, you should follow some basic cell phone etiquette rules:
Switching it off:
There are places where your phone should be either turned off or on vibration. These include meetings, movies, worship, seminars, etc. Remember, vibrate mode is only appropriate in places where you can (or you have to) take a call, but you don’t want to disturb others.
When you get a call and you’re with friends, keep the call short. This is a very important courtesy that you have to imbibe if your friends are important to you.
Try to always be polite on the phone. Oftentimes, it determines if the caller would love to call you back or not. “If you have to close the door behind you, leave it ajar”.
Speak in a lower-than-normal voice, you will be heard by the caller and not the others in the room. This makes your phone call less disturbing to others and also protects your privacy.
Avoid talking where you may be distracting to others. Also, avoid discussing unnecessary issues on the phone. It is absolutely paramount to value the time of others, especially professional acquaintances and partners.
It is not only very dangerous but also unlawful in most countries to drive & talk on your mobile phone.
Always try to keep your phone ringer as low as possible or put your mobile phone on vibrate, so it does not distract the people around you. Also, funky ringing tones are not corporate; avoid using them in professional situations.
NOTE: A good time to leave your phone at home, or at least in the car, would be at a funeral, wedding or similar events.