Learn English for Call Centers and Customer Service Jobs
Being polite is always important, but it's especially important
if you have a job in a call centre or in any customer service oriented position.
So, let's look at what it sounds like when we meet a polite employee and a rude employee,
whether it's on the phone or in person.
But this dialogue that we're going to go through is actually
on the phone. So, let's listen.
Okay, so we have here two employees, Rude Robert and Polite Patricia, and they speak
very differently. So let's listen to Robert. Robert answers the phone, and he says;
Patricia says: "Hello. Good morning."
Robert goes on: "What do you want?"
Patricia says: "May I help you? How can I assist you?"
Then Robert says: "Wait a minute."
Patricia says: "Just a moment, please."
Then Robert can't hear, so he says: "What? Huh? Can't hear you."
Patricia says: "I'm afraid I didn't hear what you said. Could you speak a little louder, please?"
Now, in this case, we were listening to both people. Right? Let's just go and listen to
Robert by himself and see what he sounds like.
"Yes. Huh? What do you want? Wait a minute.
"Hello. Good morning. May I help you?
How can I assist you? Just a moment, please.
I'm afraid I didn't hear what you said.
Could you speak a little louder, please?"
Who would you rather meet on the phone? Let's continue this dialogue.
And Robert continues. Let's listen in.
Patricia says: "Will there be anything else? Will that be all?
Is there anything else I can help you with today?"
Robert says: "Gimme your email."
Now, you see, I wrote here: "Gimme yer email." Okay?
That is not proper English; that is not correct English. Don't write like that.
But I wrote it like that because when people speak really fast and they speak very casually and very,
very, very informally, then it sounds like that. But it's only proper in certain informal
situations with your friends or something like that; not in the workplace. Okay? And
certainly not in a customer service kind of position. So, you will see some things like
that here, but don't try to talk like that or write like that
if you have a customer service job.
So, Robert says: "Gimme your email."
Patricia says: "May I have your email please?"
Robert says: "How many boxes do ya want?"
Patricia says: "How many boxes would you like?"
Now, that's something to really pay attention to. When we change: "Do you want"
to "Would you like", it makes a world of difference.
"Would you like" is very, very polite, and "Do you want" is very ordinary.
So make sure that you use: "Would you like", even if you don't
have a customer service job. It's just a much more polite way of speaking.
Robert says: "How do you wanna pay?"
And Patricia says: "How would you like to pay?"
Again, we see: "Do you want" or "wanna" and "Would you like". Right?
"How will you be paying today?"
And Patricia says: "Thank you very much. Have a nice day.
Now, did you notice that when I was reading Patricia's part, I was smiling;
when I was reading Robert's part, I wasn't smiling? So, most call centres and customer service positions
train their employees to smile while they're speaking, because they say that we can hear
your smile. All right? And it's true. And if you go back and listen to this video, you
might hear my smile even if you're not looking at the video. So try that yourself. If you
want to sound friendlier, if you want to sound more polite, if you want to sound warmer - then
smile, especially when you're on the phone. And even though people can't see you, they
can hear your smile and your warmth. Okay?
So, keep these points in mind. They can make or break your career. All right?
If you'd like to do some practice on this, please go to our website: www.engvid.com.
Thanks very much for watching. Bye for now.