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Chapter 24. Voice Mail Give and Take > Giving: Guidelines for Leaving Voice Mes...

Giving: Guidelines for Leaving Voice Messages

Reserve voice mail for short, single-subject messages that do not require a paper trail.

Limit your messages to between 20 seconds and two minutes, or you will “lose” your listener.

State the purpose of your call briefly and clearly. If it is urgent, say so, but do not “cry wolf.”

Think about what you want to say before you call; write it down if that helps you be more concise.

Tell the recipient specifically what you are looking for and how you would like the reply. Do you want a call back? Do you prefer e-mail? Are you expecting a fax?

If you are making an important call on your cell phone, be sure you are in a good “reception” area. Do not risk annoying the person you are calling by getting disconnected or by speaking over street traffic or other interference.

Do not answer your phone only to say, “I’ll call you back.” Let callers leave a message if you cannot talk when the phone rings.


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