Explains business etiquette when dealing with telephone calls. What is the point of reception that gives a good impression?


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Answering the phone in the office is one of the business etiquettes that you must acquire when you become a member of society.

With the spread of mobile phones, there are almost no opportunities to answer calls to other people in private life, but at work, you have to answer calls to other people in charge, and it is not uncommon to get confused if you are not used to it.

At first glance, the company’s telephone response to various incoming calls may seem complicated, but in fact, the response pattern for business matters is fixed, so once you learn the flow of response and the basic answers, you can respond smoothly. will be

In this article, we will introduce the basic manners and points for responding to phone calls in the business scene.

Reasons why manners are important when answering the phone

The reason why business etiquette is emphasized when answering the phone at a company is that the person answering the phone becomes the “face of the company” for the other party .

For those who call us for the first time, the first words they hear on the phone give them an image of the company.

Negative factors such as “the voice on the phone was dark”, “there was no energy”, and “they were unsociable” will give a bad impression of the company.

For this reason, many companies are working to standardize their own telephone response quality by creating manuals that define phrases and response flows for answering calls.

Basic manual for telephone correspondence in business

The basic attitude of telephone correspondence in the business scene can be roughly divided into the following three.

  • keep the other party waiting
  • Keep your voice clear and use correct language
  • Listen and communicate information accurately

If you can keep this, you should be able to make a good impression on the other party and carry your business smoothly.

Let’s check what you should be careful about in each step of actual telephone correspondence.

take within 3 calls

If you receive a phone callpick it up within 3 calls so that the other party doesn’t feel “waited”. If you call more than 3 times, add a word “Thank you for waiting” .

Depending on the company or department, there may be a limit of 2 calls or 1 call, so please check your company’s rules and respond accordingly.

Give your company name/department name/name

In business calls, the person answering the call will give their name first.

  • “○○ Co., Ltd., 〇〇 of 〇〇 Department”

By stating who the caller is, you can confirm that you have dialed the correct number, and the other party can feel at ease about what to do.

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Speak clearly and brightly

On the phone, it is difficult to read the other person’s expression, and because the sound is muffled, it may be difficult to hear the voice or leave a dark impression.

Try to speak brighter and clearer than usual so that the other person can easily hear you.

listen while taking notes

Business calls often involve calls from people you don’t know and unfamiliar words flying around.

Also, while talking, you may forget what you heard at the beginning.

When answering the phone, be sure to have paper and a pen handy and take notes while listening. The memo is also useful when transferring to other personnel.

Repeat and confirm important points

Make sure to repeat the name and contact information of the other party each time.

Repeating is not only a confirmation of what you have heard, but also a way of telling the other person that you have certainly received it .

put on hold when taking over

It would be a serious problem if the other person overheard you saying things such as, “Mr.

Be sure to put the phone on hold when answering the phone or when consulting within the company.

Be careful not to hold too long

While the call is on hold, the other party cannot do anything and is just waiting. If the hold is too long and you want to hang up, there is no way to tell.

When you put someone on hold to confirm or discuss something, it can feel like a longer time to the other person than you think.

If the hold is likely to be long, cancel the hold once and explain the situation.

Response when the person in charge is absent

If the person in charge is not there when you receive the call, tell them that you are not there.

As for the reason for absence, you can use general expressions such as “for business trip”, “for going out”, “for meeting” .

When doing so, be careful not to tell them about specific destinations you are visiting, vacations, trips, or other private plans .

If the person wants to be called back, ask for their contact information.

Hang up after the other party hangs up

As a general rule, the caller should hang up first. When you receive a call, you should wait until the other party hangs up.

In addition, the order of hanging up the phone changes depending on the position, such as who is the ordering side and which is superior.

If neither of you hang up and the call goes silent, say “excuse me” and hang up quietly.

How to receive phone calls in the business scene and flow of intermediation

Let’s take a look at the actual conversation flow when making a business call.

Receiving power

  • A: “Thank you for calling me.
  • B: “Thank you for your help. I’m Suzuki from 〇〇 company. Is Mr. Watanabe from the First Sales Division here?”
  • A: “Mr. Suzuki from 〇〇 company. Thank you for your continued support. I will check it now, so please wait a moment.”

Interact with the person in charge at your desk

If the person in charge is on the same floor, tell them that you are calling, and if they are available, they will take the call.

  • “Mr. Watanabe, Mr. Suzuki from 〇〇 company called me.”
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If the person in charge is on another floor and you don’t know what’s going on, we will check the situation on the extension and then transfer it.

  • “Mr. Watanabe, there is a call from Mr. Suzuki of ○○ company to the sales headquarters. May I forward it?”

If the person in charge is absent

Check the schedule of the person in charge and let them know you are out.

  • A: “Thank you for waiting. Watanabe is currently out and out of the office. He is scheduled to return around 16:00. Watanabe will call you as soon as he returns. Is that okay?”
  • B: “Then, please.”
  • A: “Sure. May I ask for your contact information?”
  • B: “Then, please call me on my cell phone. It’s XXX-XXXX-XXXX.”
  • A: “I’ll repeat it. XXX-XXXX-XXXX. Now, I’ll tell Watanabe.”

If you would like a call back, be sure to ask for your contact information and tell the person in charge.

Even if you are told, “I will call you back” or “Please tell me that there was a call,” be sure to tell the person in charge.

Wording in line with business etiquette

As a member of society, common sense is required when answering company phone calls.

In particular, the wording stands out in the exchange of voice only. When answering the phone, try to use business-appropriate language.

Basic phrases often used on the phone

Honorifics are so complicated that even Japanese people find it difficult to use them correctly.

But don’t worry about answering the phone. There are certain phrases that are often used on the phone, so once you learn the whole phrase, you can apply it in various situations.

The basic greeting in business is “thank you for your help”.

“Thank you for your help” used in writing business emails is a phrase that is also used on the phone.

When answering a phone call, use it after the other party has given their name or after the other party has said, “Thank you for your help.”

“~kanemasu” for impossibility

When you can’t meet the other person’s request, use “kaneru” which means “cannot be done” or “difficult” .

  • I don’t understand → I don’t understand
  • Not available → Not available
  • I cannot answer → I cannot answer

The word “I don’t know” by itself is not grammatically incorrect. But if someone asks you something and you don’t know, just answering “I don’t know” sounds kind of brusque.

Saying “I don’t understand” gives a soft and polite impression.

  • “Sorry, I don’t understand.”

When asking something, “May I ask?” “May I ask?”

When asking for the other person’s name or contact information, it is more polite to ask for permission by asking for permission, instead of asking, “Please let me know.”

  • “May I ask your name?”
  • “May I have your phone number, please?”

How to say when the other person’s voice is hard to hear

If the other party’s voice is too soft or the noise is so loud that you can’t hear them, how should you communicate?

“The voice is low” and “the surroundings are loud” are the fault of the other party, so we use the phrase “the phone is far away” as a manner of answering the phone.

  • “Excuse me, but it seems that the call is a little far away. Could you say that again?”
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Relatives are abandoned and humble words

Normally, when talking within the company, honorifics are used for superiors and executives, but when dealing with people outside the company, people within the company are discarded and humble words are used.

For example, when asked, “Where is Director Yamada?  prize.

Canario is recommended for automating correspondence

In business, even when the other party is busy, we take time to make a phone call, so it is ideal to be able to respond smoothly without waiting.

However, recently, due to the expansion of remote work, it is often the case that the office has to be run by a small number of people. .

Also, there are times when you can’t allocate resources to maintenance of manuals for handling telephones and manner training.

In the call forwarding service Canario provided by NEC Networks & System Integration, AI provides primary response to incoming calls to the company, forwarding the calls to the person in charge or leaving a message.

You can connect directly to the person in charge and receive a message, so you can rest assured that there will be no omissions. You don’t have to worry about your staff being overwhelmed with answering phone calls.

Article Summary

There is a set pattern for business phone calls. It may be confusing at first, but once you understand the basic points, you can calmly respond.

  • Understand the call flow
  • remember the pattern of responses
  • Use business-appropriate language
  • Master standard telephone phrases

If you are worried about the lack of resources for answering calls, please consider Canario, where AI answers calls on behalf of your staff.