How Do You Sound?

Sep 13th, 2013 | By | Category: Geri Roskopf's Blog

Geri Roskpf As a dispatcher, I sometimes wonder how I sound when I answer the phone. This morning I received a nice compliment on how pleasant I was, but at other times — because of a distraction or being in a hurry — I’m sure I sound completely different.

I know I get my impressions of others through what I see, their tone of voice and the words they use. I know how important my tone of voice is when customer contact is by phone and there is no visual impression at all. The tone of my voice, plus the words, create for the customer a picture of me on the other end and the same goes for me about the caller.

I thought of a few frequent customer service errors I personally find irritating:

When someone tells me, “I don’t know,” it makes me lose a little confidence in that company. I admit, I don’t always have an answer, but “I don’t have the answer right here. I’ll check and get back to you immediately,” sounds much better.

Saying “Hold on” sounds gruff and conveys impatience. I have to admit, I say this sometimes, but I know “Please hold for a moment” is much more pleasant.

“You should,” “You must,” “You have to” sounds like you’re giving a customer an order and it could create animosity. “May I recommend” or “Some options might be” lets the customer determine what to do.

Saying “Yeah” and “uh, uh.” These all sound rough and uncaring. “Yes” and “Thank you” are good replacements.

One good thing about answering the phone at the office: if I find the way I am talking is not “politically correct,” I do have the option of using the hold button!