Passing A Verbal Message or Telephone Call


When putting a telephone call through to another person you must remember to do the following:

  • Always ask the caller’s name
  • Ask the callers company / nature of their call.
  • Take their telephone number if you feel that there might be a delay in putting the call through – that way if you get cut off you have a contact name and number.

When you put the call through to the person the call is for it is important to prepare them for the call by letting them know who it is on the phone and the nature of the call.

There is nothing worse that a person receiving a call from reception and just being told “there is a call for you” and the call is put straight through. The person receiving the call doesn’t know if the call is a member of staff, a customer, or a rep or a company just touting for business.  This always gets the call off to a bad start. .

The caller starts a conversation believing that the person taking the call is aware of whom they are because they have already given their details to the receptionist, they presume the receptionist has done her job and passed on this information to the person taking the call. There is nothing more embarrassing than half way through a call the person taking the call has to ask whom they are speaking to – and it is very unprofessional. Not a good impression to give!!

If you are phoning through to let someone know there is a visitor in reception remember to say that they are in reception. Often the receptionist will phone and say I have a Mr Jones to speak to you – they put the phone down and you get a dead line but you presume you have been cut off – and wait on them phoning back – but what really has happened is the receptionist means that Mr Jones is waiting in reception.

                                             REMEMBER: FIRST IMPRESSION

A caller will always judge your organisation by the service that they receive. A telephone call is quite often the first point of contact they will have with your organisation.

 GET IT RIGHT

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Taking A Telephone Message


When taking a message ALWAYS have a pen and paper/notebook ready. You don’t know how long the message is going to be, don’t presume you will remember it. (have a look at blog: Chinese Whispers http://t.co/7oge2fxK )

You will probably need to take down a telephone number and a contact name and possibly a message.

If you are taking a message that you need to pass to another person you must remember:

ALWAYS USE A PROPER NOTE PAD OR MESSAGE BOOK

  • Do not use a “sticky pad” – they are too small and often get stuck to another piece of correspondence – causing the message getting lost or not getting to the correct person.

DATE THE MESSAGE WHEN IT WAS TAKEN

  • Often a message is not read on the day it was taken.

TIME THE MESSAGE WAS TAKEN

  • This is also  very important. A time can quite often be significant and give a wider meaning to the message to the person who is receiving the message especially if the message if read some time after it was taken. 

 WHO THE MESSAGE IS FOR

  • Quite often the message might be for a specific person or the whole team.  You may need to put: or the attention of Alison Smith – Reception Team Leader Or For the attention of The Reception Team.

WHO THE MESSAGE IS FROM

  • Always take a name and contact number from the caller. Never presume that the person the message is for will have the contacts number.

SIGN THE MESSAGE

  • It is important to let the person know who has left the message. If they have a question regarding the message they know whom to contact if they have a query regarding the message.

 The six steps above are not only helpful, they are courteous and in a court of law very important.

and please Remember! A message you take could be used in a court hearing and used in evidence. The evidence would include the date the message was taken, the time it was taken and who took the message.