How to Best Answer the Phone When You’re Doing Customer Support

answer the phone the best

The other day, I needed to shop for health insurance.  I hate shopping in general so health insurance was a double whammy of misery.  It’s interesting, though, that when I do need to call around, the best phone systems for customer support become pretty clear.

What I wanted to mention today, however, is the greeting I received.  The way you answer your phone can make a huge difference in your customer support.  So, here it is. The representatives at Blue Shield Blue Cross, or Independence Blue Cross, say:

“I help people like you everyday.”

Yup, I was immediately at ease, impressed with their phone support on demand, and more than interested to hear more about their product.  That one little greeting told me I was in the right place.  No matter what the person said after those words, I was prepared to answer their questions – I was in the right place.

When you consider what the best way to answer the phone is, consider what you do for a living.  Think about how you’ll put your customers at ease right away:

  • How can I help you?
  • What seems to be the trouble?
  • If you’re angry hang up now.
  • We’re frustrated by your frustration.

You can be funny, interesting or very unique – but be honest.  Even a how can I help you works well if it’s delivered in a happy voice.  For more attention, get outside of the box with something funny like the examples above.

The best phone systems for customer support help you by providing clear sound so it’s eaier for the caller to understand you.  They allow seamless features, too, so your caller never has to guess what you’re doing when you answer the phone.

There’s one other pointer for you to think about: What you say vs. what callers hear. This is important when you’re doing customer service since, well, not everyone hears very well.

Make sure you appropriately pause before you deliver your message:

“Good Morning …  Life’s a beach at IT solutions … this is Bob … how may I serve you?”

Those ellipsis represent where you should take a slow, long pause so the reader can hear what you’re saying.  If that doesn’t make sense right away, practice a few times.  You’ll know you’ve got the hang of it when your caller doesn’t have to ask your name ten times but automatically remembers it.


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