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Certified Office Administrator Telephone Manners

Learning Resources

Telephone Manners

Good manners are good for business, while great manners can set you apart. If you're under stress or in a hurry, it's easy to let your guard down and fail to observe the basics. But if you take a deep breath before you call, good manners can actually get you the results you want - faster.

Do's and don'ts

  • Don't type or shuffle papers while you're on the phone - it suggests that you're not listening to the caller.
  • If you have to put the phone down, do it gently to spare your caller's ear.
  • Rid your mouth of food, gum, cough drops, or candy before talking on the phone - the receiver amplifies your noshing.
  • If you have to sneeze or cough, turn your head and cover your mouth - and the receiver.
  • Speak directly into the receiver - don't bury it in your shoulder or neck.
  • If you dial the wrong number, explain yourself and verify the phone number so you don't repeat the call. Don't hang up; that's just rude.
  • Cut down on the background noise when taking or making a call. Radios, televisions, and even computer bings and bleeps can be distracting over the phone.