TELEPHONE SKILLS

USING THE PHONE TO HELP WITH YOUR JOB

TELEPHONE SKILLS

Your voice is your personality over the telephone

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TELEPHONE SKILLS
 The  1.

aim of this presentation is to:

Show you how to evaluate your telephone voice use your telephone skills for three different methods of telephone job searching
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 2.

Evaluate your telephone voice
 Your

voice makes an immediate impression that can portray you as: friendly confident spontaneous relaxed or or or or distant timid mechanical nervous

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Evaluate your telephone voice

Always smile
when you speak to someone on the phone - unless it is inappropriate This might sound odd - but practice and listen to the difference in the tone of your voice if you are smiling.
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Evaluate your telephone voice

Pitch your voice lower
Phones are like tape recorders –they make your voice sound higher pitched Speak slightly slower than normal and pronounce your words clearly.
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Evaluate your telephone voice

Be well prepared

Practice by phoning someone you know – who will give you honest feedback. If necessary have a pre-arranged script. Don’t waffle.

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Evaluate your telephone voice

Listen
Carefully to what the other person is saying Without interrupting
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Evaluate your telephone voice

Take Notes
To ask questions after the other person has finished speaking

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Evaluate your telephone voice

Location
Make sure you are somewhere quiet and where you will not be interrupted.

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Evaluate your telephone voice

Don’t eat. Don’t smoke
You can hear it on the phone. If you need a drink then let the other person know that –otherwise they will be surprised by suddenly hearing gulping noises!

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Evaluate your telephone voice
Now that you have thought about how you present yourself over the telephone, see how you can apply your new skills to your first job…

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Structure of a sales call.

There are five phases in a telephone call, whatever the topic of the telephone conversation is. The relative relevance of each of the following steps depends on the background, relevance and circumstance of the telephone call.

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Pre-call Planning
1.

Know Your Product Product fact book Know Your Competition Emphasize the strengths of your product, especially in areas where the competition is weak

1.

3.

Know Your Prospect Cold calls: fact-finding calls Assemble a Sales Kit Include all information the prospect will need about your product and services

3.

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Phase 1: Open and initiate (incoming)  Be prepared for the call  Have a welcome mood, voice and tone Phase 2: Open and initiate (outgoing)  Explain the purpose and benefit of the call  Build Rapport  Ensure that the customer understands and agrees to proceed  Give the main reasons the prospect should consider your product

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(continued)

Phase 3: Gather information (listening and encouraging)  Questioning or probing focused on key information, within a brief time frame  Involve the prospect to understand his or her needs  Ask all questions before you give your presentation  Tailor your presentation according to what you learned about the prospect Phase 4: Solution and options  Offer information and options  Set realistic expectation, clarify approach  Sell benefits, not features  Explore and identify additional needs if any and arrive at agreement  Plan your answers to the most common objections

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continued

Phase 5: Confirm and close  Ask for or seek a decision  Summarize, recap and check  Express a ‘thank you’ note  Express appreciation, if relevant Phase 6: Follow up  Ensure prompt delivery of what is assured or promised

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Cold calling
Getting through to the right person is sometimes difficult. Remember to: • Always introduce yourself

• Be courteous and business like with everyone • Be confident as if you have no doubt your call will
reach its goal

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Cold calling
Receptionists generally want to know who you are, what and who you want.

  

If you do not know the name of the person you want – ask for the appropriate manager Try to get the persons name before you are transferred If your contact is not available ask when is a good time to call back When you get through –ask if this is a good time to call/talk (never say bad time as this can encourage a negative response)

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Job application

Calling immediately in response to an advertised job is almost always a mistake It is sensible to allow yourself some time to think through the process and decide exactly what you want to say It is quite acceptable to make some notes before calling continued….
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Job application
It is a good idea to make a list of the key points that you want to get across:
Make sure you know who you want to talk to Have the name and reference of the job ready If you are offered the option of calling for an informal chat then do so – (some companies use this initial contact as a way of evaluating potential employees) Have questions prepared which are relevant to the advertised vacancy
continued….

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Job application

Take time filling in the application form Ask other people’s opinions before sending in the form Keep a copy of the application form and take it with you to the interview ask if you can refer to notes during the interview process

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Telephone interview
Study the job description and person specification
This enables you to identify the company’s particular needs and helps demonstrate that you possess the skills required to meet them

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Telephone interview
Research the company

Products services, history and culture. Make a special effort to identify any areas where your skills and experience may be of particular value

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Telephone interview
Practice first

• • •

Compile a list of probable questions and ask a friend to try them out on you over the phone Prepare answers carefully using key words from the job description and person specification Do not write out the answers in full as this will make you sound wooden and too scripted
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Telephone interview

Organise yourself
Have all the required information to hand: Up to date CV  Job description  Person specification  Company information  The name of the person you are talking to (in case you forget half way through the conversation!)

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Telephone interview
Match your accomplishments
Prepare a list matching the company’s stated requirements Keep this list in front of you Refer to it at every relevant opportunity

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Telephone interview
Be prepared to give examples
Employers look for examples of successful use of:

• communication skills • analytical skills • teamwork • drive and initiative

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Telephone interview
Quantify your accomplishments
Interviewers are keen to hear about relevant challenges or problems you faced in the workplace The specific actions you took and the measurable results achieved e.g increased sales by 35%

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Telephone interview
Remember
To select a quiet place for the interview To stand – this can make you sound more confident and helps project a positive and professional interview To match your speaking rate and pitch to that of the interviewer to establish rapport To make an effort to smile (in the right places!) to create a friendly and enthusiastic impression
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Telephone interview
Impressions
Convey the impression that you are genuinely interested in the company and eager to make a contribution Refer to appropriate information you discovered about the company during the course of your research Respond appropriately to verbal or tonal clues. If you don’t understand a question –say so and ask for clarification
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Telephone interview
Answers
Provide well-developed, balanced and analytical answers Avoid yes and no replies Have an explanation for leaving your current or previous job – do not criticise your previous employer or colleagues.

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Telephone interview
Questions

Prepare a few thoughtful questions to ask the interviewer when given the opportunity

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Telephone interview
Finishing the call
At the end of the interview: emphasise your interest in the job emphasise your interest in the company reiterate your qualifications stress that you would welcome a face to face interview

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Telephone interview
After the interview

Write a short thank you letter

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Further help and information
Brent Library Service have a number of resources which can help you increase and improve your telephone skills Examples of these are: Work Base Training Patrick Forsyth A Watson-Delestree Improving telephone skills Telephone skills Basic telephone training 658.452 658.452 651.7

If you want to know more about these or have any other questions please ask a member of staff in your local library
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TELEPHONE SKILLS

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