Make even your most difficult phone call pleasant and successful with these practical tips

Mit Diplomatie und Freundlichkeit werden Sie mehr erreichen als mit „toughem“ Auftreten. Besonders bei schwierigen Telefonaten zahlt sich Fingerspitzengefühl aus, meint Jean Lennox, die Chefredakteurin von Secretary Today. Übrigens: Secretary Today steht für perfekte britische und amerikanische Korrespondenz, Gespräche, Telefonate, Geschäftsbesuche und sicheren Small Talk. Fordern Sie Ihren persönlichen Business English Trainer jetzt zum kostenlosen 30-Tage-Test an – klicken Sie hier ...

There are many kinds of difficult phone calls you might have to make as a secretary or personal assistant. Some will be on your own behalf, others will be for your boss. Whatever the case, these tips will help you get through even the most difficult call.

Start with the receptionist

Even if you are very angry, be nice to the receptionist. It's not their fault, and it can also be useful to have them on your side so they will help you get through to the best person.

  • I wonder if you can tell me who is responsible for purchasing supplies.

If they give you a name you barely understand, ask them to explain it. This is important, because if you don’t you’ll risk mispronouncing somebody’s name, and that will not make you sound very professional.

  • I’m sorry, how is that name pronounced and spelled?

If you can’t get the spelling right because you get the English alphabet confused, at least get down a phonetic version of that person’s name.

When you get through to the right person, be prepared! This is no time to improvise. Ask yourself these six questions and write down the most important phrases you will have to say.

1 Why are you having this conversation?

  • I’m calling about a problem my boss had in your hotel last week.

2 What are the details?

  • The bathroom was dirty and the air-conditioning didn’t work.

3 What action do you want the other person to take?

  • I suggest that you give us a voucher to cover the price of a room for one night.

4 Why do they need to take this action?

  • We’ve never had problems before, and we want to continue using your hotel.

5 Are there any alternatives?

  • What do you think would be fair compensation?

6 How can you make a win-win situation?

  • I’m sure that we can come to some agreement.

Frischen Sie jetzt regelmäßig Ihr Englisch auf. Egal, ob Sie Englisch-Anfängerin oder Englisch-Profi sind. Secretary Today - Professionelles Business English für Sekretärinnen und Assistentinnen. Jetzt diese Ausgabe kostenlos testen ...