phone etiquette

5 Reasons Your Phone Etiquette Is Terrible

Whether it’s you, an aircraft parts vendor, an MRO or someone entirely different,  having good phone skills is crucial in an international environment.

But sadly this is far from what we experience in the aviation industry. It’s tragic.


When I approach a vendor for procurement purposes, my eyes are set on the end result; a successful purchase in time for my requisition requirements.

But sadly I end up making contact with someone that has as much energy as a snail. Slow moving and couldn't care less about my needs.

When I reach a sales manager often times I’ll get the “I’ll call you back in an hour.”  When that hour arrives and I don’t hear from them, I call them back. You would be surprised how often I get, “He’s out to lunch for an hour, can I take a message?”

First who takes an hour lunch and second who tells someone they’ll call them back during the time they know they're going to lunch?

It makes no sense.

Or how about this one. People ask you to email them and they never acknowledge, respond or cater toward your email. So why did they tell you to email them in the first place?

Bad phone etiquette

There are some fundamental truths when talking on the phone. One is  to greet the other person with respect. “Good afternoon Skylink” or “It was nice talking with you ___, take care.”  Simple yet respectful.

The next fundamental truth is to follow up on your commitments. If you tell someone you're going to do something, then do it. Plain and simple. If I tell you I’m going to email you in an hour, I’m going to email you in an hour. If I don’t, I’m going to tell you why my email is going to be delayed.

It’s about communication fundamentals.

If you make these 5 mistakes, your phone etiquette is terrible:

  • You say, I’ll call you back in 15 minutes and never do.
  • You say, send me an email and never do anything when the email is received.
  • You yell something to your coworker, or even worse, you have a full conversation with them.
  • You answer, “HELLO."
  • You’re monotone.

Follow these 5 rules instead to make sure you're doing it right:

  1. Greet with energy - nobody wants to talk to a sourpuss.
  2. Do what you say you're going to do - don’t say one thing and do another.
  3. Avoid the hold button - people hate being put on hold.
  4. Listen and learn - don’t interrupt or talk to your co-worker.
  5. Smile - don't’ be so serious or dry.

Practicing good phone etiquette should be on everyone's mind. I don’t care if you're an airline, MRO, supplier or freight forwarder.

Having good communication skills is a necessity to build lasting relationships that you can count on. [TWEET THIS]

Have you had an experience where the person on the other line was disconnected? Comment below.