Voicemail Ettiquette


In today’s day and age, the chances of reaching the person you want to speak to the first time you call are very slim. It seems that everyone has a receptionist, a secretary, or voicemail that you will have to talk to before you ever get to speak to the person you really want! Being able to leave a professional, informative message, as well as knowing how to set up your voicemail greeting to ensure you get the information you want from a party that calls the first time, will increase your productivity and make your phone calls that much easier.

First, you should consider giving your outgoing message a facelift. It doesn’t have to be particularly long. Pause for 2 seconds before you begin to speak, then something simple such as, “Hi, this is Andrew Schultz with WNY Star Realty. I’m sorry I can’t take your call at the present time. Please leave me your name, phone number, and how I can help you. Messages are normally returned within 24 to 48 hours. Thank you!” This message gives all the essentials, and reminds people you need name AND number, as well as a reason for their call. It also gives a time line for when they can expect a return call, so that they don’t feel the need to call 3 or 4 times in one day.

Some people like to specify the current date in their message, and give you a run down on when they will be unavailable. I’m not a fan of this approach because it’s easy to forget to change it one day, or you may be unexpectedly out the following day. If you wanted to take this approach, I would suggest changing it on a weekly basis. A simple example of this would be, “Hi, you’ve reached Andrew Schultz with WNY Star Realty. For the week of November 16, 2008, I will be out of the office Monday and Tuesday mornings, and Friday afternoon, but expect to be in the office much of the rest of the week. Please leave me your name, number, and how I can help you. Messages are normally returned within 24 to 48 hours. Thanks!”

Leaving a message on a voicemail is a fairly simple task, but many people forget crucial parts which lead to calls going unreturned. Every time you leave a voicemail, leave your name, number, and reason for your call. Always leave your number TWICE. Often times, a phone will cut out for that split second when you are leaving a number, so your recipient gets (716) 650-4_43. Giving your number twice allows them to piece the number together, and return your call. Be specific with the reason for your call! “Give me a call,” doesn’t tell me what you need, and you’ll get bumped to the bottom of my call back list.

Hopefully this brings a little bit more of an understanding to the world of voicemail. These simple tips will help save you and your associates time, as well as make you more productive, because you no longer have to search for phone numbers or try to recall a reason that someone is calling you. In addition, leaving a good voice mail is more likely to get your call returned quickly.

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2 comments to Voicemail Ettiquette

  • Eric Hundin  says:

    I found your blog on MSN Search. Nice writing. I will check back to read more.

    Eric Hundin

  • Kate  says:

    I wish more people would follow these rules re: voicemail.

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