I was sitting in the waiting room. The phone rang. The junior answered. I didn’t hear what the caller asked, but I could guess based on the answer. “It will be $50”.
My guess was that the caller asked how much the service would be.
As soon they got the answer they hung up.
If you were the owner or manager of this business, would you be happy if you overheard that conversation?
I know I wouldn’t be and yet you can’t blame the junior. The junior did what she was asked; she answered the question about cost.
If you don’t train your people, you can’t be angry when they don’t do things the way you would like them done.
Most customer enquiries in any business, in any industry usually start with a question about cost. Why? Because customers don’t know what else to ask.
It’s your job to take control of the phone call.
You could start by asking permission to ask them a few questions. “Do you mind if I ask you a few questions to make sure I understand your situation please?”
Here are a few examples from different industries that follow once you have been given permission to ask:
“Is it for your son or daughter?”
“Is it for a special occasion?”
“Is this something you need urgently?”
“Are you looking to buy or rent a property?”
It’s very important to have a script or cheat sheet so your team can answer customer enquiries in a professional and consistent manner whilst taking control of the call. We call this “Telephone Technique”.
It’s up to you to develop the script or series of questions. You know the information you need in order to determine if you can help someone. You know why you ask the questions you do.
If you haven’t done so, please write this down. You don’t have to personally write it down, you can record it and have it transcribed, but someone has to document it.
You’ll be surprised at how many more sales you’ll make, or time you’ll save by qualifying the right rather than wrong customers, if you’ll just take the time to unpack what you know and train your people.
You might be very surprised (and disappointed) if you were to listen in on your calls and add up the number of potential sales you lose, simply because you don’t have a script and you haven’t trained your team.