[Examples available] Check the etiquette for dealing with complaints and business calls when the person in charge is absent


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There are a lot of unique manners and phrases when answering business phone calls, and many people are worried that they cannot respond smoothly.

Therefore, in this article, we will explain the points and example sentences for answering the phone.

We will introduce how to respond when you receive a complaint from a customer or when the person in charge is absent, so please make use of it.

First, check the basics and mental attitude of answering the phone

Let’s check the basic contents you need to know when answering the phone at the company below.

  • Know that you are answering the phone on behalf of the company
  • Do not use “Hello” as it is not a private call
  • Knowing honorifics and titles suitable for business
  • Familiarize yourself with the operation of your phone
  • Keep a pen and notes handy when answering the phone
  • take incoming calls positively

[With example sentences] Manual for how to receive and respond to telephone calls

Next, I will introduce how to respond when receiving a phone call along the actual flow.

This time, let’s check the basic flow, how to respond when a complaint is received, and when the person in charge is absent.

Basic flow

The basic call flow is as follows.

  1. Pick up the phone before the third call ends
  2. Clearly state your company name and your name
  3. Listen to the other party’s name and purpose, and repeat it to confirm

Pick up the phone before the third call ends

It is generally accepted that incoming calls should be answered within 3 calls.

If you are not used to answering the phone, it may take some time to pick up the phone, but try to respond quickly before the third call rings.

Also, some companies may have manuals that differ from general rules. If you were unable to confirm during training, we recommend that you check with a senior employee at an early stage.

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In addition, if you are late to answer the phone than the established rule, let’s add a word, “I’m sorry to have kept you waiting . “

Clearly state your company name and your name

When you pick up the phone, cheerfully say your company name and your name.

If your voice is too loud, the sound will be distorted and it will be difficult to hear, so please be careful.

  • Example: “Thank you for calling. I’m XX from ○○ company.”

Listen to the other party’s name and purpose, and repeat it to confirm

Next, ask for the name of the other party and the business. If there is even the slightest possibility that you may have misheard or missed something, it is a good idea to repeat it again to make sure there are no discrepancies .

  • Sentence 1: “I’m Mr. □□ from △△ company. I’m always indebted to you.”
  • Sentence 2: “Are you sure you are Mr. □□ from △△ company? (No, if you say your name is XX) I’m very sorry. I’m Mr. □□ from △△ company. We become indebted to”
  • Sentence 3: “(After listening to the other party’s business) Regarding the web meeting to be held on XXth, XX, we have something to discuss with the person in charge at our company, so you called us. So, can you please wait for a while?”

If you receive a complaint

When you receive complaints over the phone, you need to be even more polite.

Since you can’t see each other’s faces on the phone, it’s difficult to convey subtle nuances, which can lead to bigger problems than you might think.

If you are the first receptionist, try to be calm and listen to what the other person has to say. It is important to try to understand the situation by listening to the other party while attuned to them without conveying your opinion.

It would be nice to respond with something like “Goodbye” .

Once you have grasped the situation to some extent, use cushion talk to encourage the other person to talk.

  • 例:「Excuse me, but could you tell me a little more about ~?」

If it’s clearly your company’s fault, apologize sincerely to the other party on the phone.

  • Example sentence: “I apologize for the inconvenience caused by the matter of ○○.”
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However, if you are not sure that your company is at fault, or if there is no fault, apologize only for making the other party feel uncomfortable.

If you apologize unnecessarily, the person who called you may judge that you have admitted that the company is at fault.

If it is difficult for you to deal with the complaint on your own, don’t overdo it and ask your senior employees or superiors for instructions .

When the person in charge is absent

If the person you specified is not in the company or is busy with another job, tell the other party that you are out of the office.

Below are some useful examples to convey that the person in charge is not available.

  • Sentence 1: “I’m sorry. XX is out of the office at the moment, and we don’t know when he will be back.
  • Sentence 2: “I’m sorry, XX is on vacation today, and I’m  webinar page. Here you will see a list of scheduled to come to work tomorrow. If it’s not an urgent matter, I’d like to ask you to call me back tomorrow from XX.”

[With example sentences] How to call and respond when calling from yourself

So far, I have introduced how to respond when receiving an incoming call and example sentences.

Make a call with your business organized

When making a call, it is a good idea to organize your business in advance so that the conversation will proceed smoothly. Simply write down what you want to convey in your memo.

If you are not used to making phone calls, it may be a good idea to make a list of the department name, name, and required documents of the other party .

Avoid busy times as much as possible

In business, it is good manners not to call during hours when the other party is expected to be busy .

For example, it is safer to avoid the early morning of the week, before and after starting work, during the lunch break, and after business hours .

If you have to make a phone call during busy hours, it would be a good idea to add a few words when the other person answers the phone.

  • Sentence 1: “I apologize for the busy time at the beginning of the week. My name is XX from ○○ company.”
  • Sentence 2: “I’m sorry for being late at night. I’m XX from ○○ company.”
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call flow

The flow of outgoing calls is as follows.

  1. Give your name
  2. Request an intermediary if necessary.
  3. Tell the matter (Example: The web meeting is on XXth, XXth, but I am contacting you to request a change.)
  4. Put down the handset quietly and hang up

The following example sentences are useful when the person in charge is absent.

  • Sentence 1: “I understand. What time is Mr. △△ expected to return?”
  • Sentence 2: “Then I will contact you again.”


Before you get used to answering the phone, try to communicate using the example sentences introduced in this article.

Even if you feel awkward at first, you will gradually be able to communicate with others using your own words that are appropriate to the situation.

It is important to respond with proper manners, but it is also important to communicate on the phone while considering the other person’s feelings and position.