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How to Craft a Polished Voicemail Greeting

In our past two blog posts, we’ve discussed how to leave a voicemail message that sounds professional and clean. This week, we discuss the other side of the coin: how to craft the perfect voicemail greeting.

If you’re like most professionals, you’re often far too busy to answer your phone as it rings and allow most calls to go through to voicemail. This means that for many colleagues, clients, and potential business connections, your voicemail greeting may be your first impression. Use the following tips to help create a voicemail greeting that is professional, polished, and efficient.

Keep it short: The ideal voicemail greeting should be no longer than twenty to twenty-five seconds. This is especially important in light of the fact you will most likely have many repeat callers who would prefer not to listen to a lengthy greeting each time they call.

Eliminate background noise: While you may not notice the noise around you at your work space, background noise like ringing phones, chatting coworkers, or a noisy heating system will be very noticeable to your caller. In addition to sounding unprofessional, this background noise can make your greeting difficult to understand. Find a quiet location before recording your greeting.

Practice: In order to create the smoothest greeting possible, write down what you want to say in advance. Then, read it aloud several times before recording, so that you can say the entire greeting without stumbling or taking unnatural pauses.

Your message should contain the following elements: A greeting including your name, company and position; a brief statement that you are unable to answer the phone at the moment; a request for the caller to leave a message; and if possible, a way to receive immediate assistance if needed (e.g. a secretary, receptionist, or alternate department).

Slow and clear: Most importantly, take care to speak even more slowly and clearly than usual. It doesn’t matter how well your greeting is crafted if no one can understand it!

Start out 2011 on the right foot: contact Corporate Speech Solutions to find out how we can help you improve your speech and communication skills in the new year. Check out our website at www.corporatespeechsolutions.com.