Yesterday, I received a phone call from one of my kids friends. When I picked up the telephone, he said “Hi, who is this?” I politely responded with, “Well hello, who may I ask is calling? The young voice on the other end then proceeded to tell me who he was and and wanted to know if my son was home? This is very typical of kids today. However, it is not the correct way to make a phone call. Telephone etiquette is one skill you will use your entire life. Many times, a person’s first impression of you is based on how you speak to them over the telephone, so it is important to be courteous and polite on the telephone and to learn what is and is not appropriate when answering the phone.
Telephone skills are fun to teach and fun for the kids to learn. Here are some tips to share with your kids:
- Choose a good time to call people. Never call anyone to early or too late.
- Let the person you are calling know who it is and ask politely to speak with someone. Example: “Hi, this is Joey can I please talk to Sammy?”
- When answering the phone answer with a pleasant hello.
- If the call is for someone else, go and get them. No yelling!
- If the call is for someone else who is not available, take a message and let the caller know that you will let them know that you called.
The most important tip, is to start teaching your kids early. When children are young they love to pretend. Start by role playing with two unplugged phones.
You’ll both have fun while you teach your child a lifetime skill.