When I am away on business, I am very dependent on getting my voicemail messages from my office phone each day so that I can respond within 3 or 4 hours. Enquiries and proposals are requested but I am aghast at the number of people to whom I can actually respond. Here are some of the scenarios that have occurred.

1. A lady literally whispered her message down the phone so, even at full volume, I could not hear it.

2. A man mumbled his name so I could not catch it despite repeating the playback repeatedly. I then had to ring the number back without knowing who I needed to speak to. Needless to say, the person who answered the phone had no idea either.

3. Another person said his telephone number so fast, I had to play the message repeatedly to grasp it.

4. One lady left her number and it was a fax number when I called!

5. Three people left mobile numbers to call back on and the response was that this number could no longer receive calls (only 2 hours after they called me). ( They were out of credit, I presume.)

6. Clients I knew called and did not leave their number so it took me a considerable amount of time to track the number down from a hospital bedroom that had no phone directory. That was assuming I remembered the name of the company they worked for!

If you called me on one of those occasions, and I did not return your call, you now know why.

The moral of the story is this. It is always important to be aware of your voice projection over the phone at all times if you want to get your calls returned. Here’s how:-

1. Make sure you are talking into the mouthpiece and not out to the side.
2. Sit up straight or stand when leaving a message so there is energy in your voice
3. Say your name slowly and your telephone number slowly so people can write it down.
4. If you leave a mobile number, make sure you have enough credit at all times so people can connect with you.
5. Always leave a telephone number to call back on, even if you think the person you are calling has it. They may be out of the office and not have numbers on them.
6. Give the person the best time to call you back so they have the best chance of reaching you.

Jenny Cartwright – International Sales Trainer / Speaker / Coach

Author of “Don’t Get Hung up! – How to sell products and services by phone” and “Secrets of Top Sales Professionals.”

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