The Good Intern
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Posted by Michelle Pence - - 1 comments

If you've ever participated in a political internship, by the end of the internship you were probably an expert at talking to people on the phone (speaking to constituents is usually a major part of most political internships).  I've learned that you end up speaking to a wide range of people with all types of different issues and emotions, and while the experience can be daunting and challenging at first, it’s actually excellent practice at communicating with people.


Answering phones is notoriously one of the most basic intern duties, and although the task gets a bad rap as being boring and mundane, it can actually be really positive if you keep the right mindset... and refrain from hanging up on that person who ends up just wanting to chat about their cat.


Here are some do’s and don’ts for answering the phone at your internship:

DO be familiar with how the phone system works.  This is essential.  If you don’t understand how to do basic functions, such as transferring, ask someone ASAP.

DO ask your employer how they want you to answer the phones, if they didn’t tell you upfront.  Many places have standard greetings they want employees to use.

DON’T be rude to the person you’re talking to… EVER!  I have been cursed and screamed at by countless disgruntled people on the phone, but it’s so important to stay calm and be the bigger person no matter what.  If the person is becoming verbally abusive or threatening, have them hold and get a supervisor who will tell you what you should do.

DO be confident.  Of course you probably don’t know the answer to every question someone might ask, but you can find out easy enough.  When calling a company, people generally expect to talk to someone who knows what they’re doing and can help them, so speak with a self-assured attitude even if you aren’t entirely confident.

DON’T let your emotions affect the conversation.  No matter if you’re tired, emotional, or it’s a minute away from when you’re supposed to get off work, try to maintain that positive attitude and keep your mind focused on the call.

DO speak clearly.  It may sound silly, but it's important to make sure you are speaking clearly and are easily understandable on the phone.  Most people probably don't think about how they sound on the phone when chatting with friends, so next time you're on a business call try to be attentive to how fast, loud, and clearly you speak so you will know what to work on.

One Response so far.

  1. phone answering service is great service for reducing the business time and grow the business. this is effective service for small and large size program.

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