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Professional Telephone Skills

Do you wonder why dealing with customers on the telephone can often generate problems that are never encountered face to face?

While telephone enquiries provide sales opportunities, one bad experience with someone on the phone may be enough reason for a customer - even a regular customer - to look elsewhere.

The telephone is your customer's lifeline to your company. Yet although it provides fast and relatively inexpensive communication, it is a medium that is impersonal -- and switchboard and other telephone staff must be able to prevent negative behaviour on both sides. It is essential to understand, not just which techniques can be used, but the advantages and disadvantages of communicating by telephone. We will work with you to produce a solution that enables delegates to be brighter, more responsive and far more effective in their telephone work. The result ? Customers will have a positive response when dealing with you on the telephone, creating better and longer-lasting relationships.

Course Aims:

To raise the awareness of customer service on the telephone and assist delegates in providing telephone service excellence.

Target Audience:

All staff members who use the telephone as part of their normal duties.

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Learning Objectives

  • Understand the importance, and use of, the telephone in delivering exceptional customer service
  • Gain enhanced key skills in assertiveness, listening and dealing with challenging callers
  • Deal with callers in a professional, efficient manner

Course Content

MODULE 1:  Introduction and Course Overview
MODULE 2:  Exercise: Getting To Know You
MODULE 3:  Knowledge / Skill Checklist
MODULE 4:  First Impressions
Learning outcomes:
Understand the importance of a good first impressions  and how making a poor first impression can severely affect the customer / colleague relationship.
MODULE 5:  Communication
Learning outcomes:
See how good and poor communication skills impacts on providing an efficient customer service.
Topics covered:
  • Why Communication Goes Wrong
  • Building Rapport
  • Communication Methods
  • Personal Communication Style Questionnaire
MODULE 6:  Telephone Skills
Learning outcomes:
Learn about good telephone technique, transferring telephone calls, putting callers on hold, using appropriate language, taking accurate messages.
Topics covered:
  • Telephone Skills Self Diagnostic
  • Inappropriate Language/Phrases Exercise
  • Effective Telephone Communicators
  • Poor Telephone Communicators
MODULE 7:  The Factors of The Voice
Learning outcomes:
Recognise how vocal factors can impact on business relationships and address any issues.
Topics covered:
  • Power
  • Pitch
  • Pronunciation
  • Pace
  • Inflection/Emphasis
MODULE 8:  Six Steps to Handling An Incoming Call
Learning outcomes:
Understand how to follow a structured framework to enable incoming calls to be handled efficiently.
Topics covered:
  • Good and Poor Statements on the Phone
  • Warm Transfer of Calls
  • Message Taking
MODULE 9:  Questioning Techniques
Learning outcomes:
Be able to use the TED technique and open questioning to help determine and solve problems.
Topics covered:
  • What are Open Questions?
  • What are Closed Questions?
  • T.E.D. Technique for Open Questions
  • Funnelling Technique
MODULE 10:  Listening Skills
Learning outcomes:
Understand the importance of effective listening skills when dealing with customers and work colleagues.
Topics covered:
  • Listening Skills Questionnaire
  • Listening Skills Tips/Techniques
MODULE 11:  Telephone Work - Standards Monitoring Checklist
Learning outcomes:
Know how to use the standards monitoring checklist, and understand how it can help to maintain service levels.
Topics covered:
  • Role Play: Guidelines for Observer Feedback
MODULE 12:  Assertiveness
Learning outcomes:
Fully understand what assertiveness means and explore the differences between aggressive, passive and assertive behaviours.
Topics covered:
  • Car wars exercise
  • Assertiveness, Aggressiveness and Passivity
  • Assertiveness - The 3 Steps
  • Assertive Skill Practice
MODULE 13:  15 top tips for building trust and rapport
Learning outcomes:
Recognise the value of using certain behaviours in building trust and rapport.
MODULE 14:  Influencing: Preparation
Learning outcomes:
Discover the importance of good preparation before dealing with a challenging situation.
Topics covered:
  • Influencing Tactics
MODULE 15:  Dealing with Anger
Learning outcomes:
Recognise why people get angry and understand how to diffuse  and deal with potential problems.
Topics covered:
  • Irate People - Tips and Tactics
MODULE 16:  Your Personal Action Plan

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