Telephone Etiquette

Presenting a professional image, both in person and on the telephone, is a very important customer service skill.


*      Start with a Greeting which includes your department/location and your name.

Example:  “Good Morning! ACME Clinic, this is Mary,

How can I help you?”

*      Speak clearly, do not use slang or jargon…SMILE when you speak. 

Your cheerful tone will come through.

*      Take a moment and listen….FOCUS on the caller and don’t allow interruptions.

*      Always have a pen and paper handy to take notes.

*      If you need to put a caller on “hold”…Ask, “May I put you on hold”……  Don’t leave a caller on hold for more than 1 minute.   If you need more time, take the contact information and return the call when you have the time or information you need.



*      ALWAYS identify yourself by your name…not just your department.

*      Be prepared to ask questions or provide information in a clear and concise manner.  Get to your point and be respectful of other’s time. 

*      Be discreet. Be aware of who is around you when discussing confidential information.

*      If leaving a message, keep it short and sweet.  Be sure to leave complete return contact information including name, department and return telephone number.  Say the telephone number S  L  O  W  L  Y……..

Taking the Heat

 Taking the Heat is a highly successful way to manage dissatisfied people.  It works for co-workers, physicians, patients and family members.  Unfortunately, there will always be dissatisfied people.  Having a plan on how to handle this situation can be very powerful.  Next time you are confronted by an upset or dissatisfied pe rson, plan toTake the Heat

 "Click me to learn how to Take the Heat."


What is Your Role?

In the service of healthcare, we all have a great purpose no matter what role we play.  Each physician, receptionist, medical assistant, administrator, housekeeper, nurse and medical records clerk plays a part in molding the patient’s experience.  Our role is that of a host or hostess, and our patients and visitors are the guests that we have invited into our home. 

Learn to embrace this role that you play and realize that you have the power to create a warm and welcoming home environment.  Your smile and openness, the words that you speak, the words that you don’t speak, your accuracy and focus and your willingness to give more than expected is what truly makes a difference.

As with any skill or talent, it takes practice to succeed.  With practice comes perfection, so, start practicing your part today and choose to:

·         Greet each patient with a smile and your complete attention (if only for a moment).

·         Look the patient in the eyes.

·         Appear eager to help.

·         Remember the patient’s name and use it in conversation.

·         Anticipate the patient’s questions, wants or needs.

·         Offer assistance without being asked.

·         Assume responsibility even when it is not your job.

·         Don’t make promises that can’t be kept. 

·         Handle a patient’s concerns (and complaints) with empathy, courtesy and respect.

·         Do something unique or special (no matter how small) and make their day. 

With practice, you will understand your purpose and feel your power and ability to truly make a difference. 



 Smiling is infectious; you catch it like the flu,

When someone smiled at me today, I started smiling too!

I passed around the corner and someone saw my grin

When he smiled I realized I’d passed it on to him.

I thought about that smile then realized it’s worth,

A single smile, just like mine could travel round the earth.

So, if you feel a smile begin, don’t leave it undetected

Let’s start an epidemic quick, and get the world infected!!

Everyone needs a smile!!

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