Friday, December 7, 2007

How May I Direct Your Call?

Dear Callers,

Please follow these simple instructions to ensure that your call is directed in a timely and efficient manner and that you are not "accidentally" disconnected:
  1. The CEO does not answer the main phone line and it's highly unlikely that he ever will. He is not the receptionist. He is the C-E-O. No, I will not transfer you directly to his line. That's what his assistant is for. She will screen you to see if you're some kind of crackpot/loser/psycho/stalker/ex-con/beggar/liar or con artist. Also, please do not yell the name of the CEO into the phone as if it were he who just picked up and you're calling to see if he wants to go see a movie. Have some decorum.

  2. Honestly, I don't really need to know your name when you call. I only need to know who to transfer you to. If your call starts, "Hi, this is Melissa Jones and I'm calling from XYZ Company..." and goes on for more than thirty seconds without you getting to the point, you can expect to hear a dial tone. Please call back after you condense your speech into something more pleasing, like, "Hi, may I speak to Bob, please?" or better yet, "Bob, please."

  3. Salespeople: No, we are not moving the in next 8-12 months. No, we don't need a new copier or printer, and no, I don't want a subscription to the Wall Street Journal. We don't need office supplies at the moment or Christmas cards at this time. Persistence will get you nowhere. Expect a dial tone.

  4. God made voicemail so that busy people can screen/avoid/ignore their calls. Have some patience (and dignity) and leave a voicemail message if you would like your call returned. No, I'm not going to page them. This is not the supermarket. Besides, we do not have a paging system. Actually, we do, but I'm not going to shatter the relative silence of the entire office because you can't wait five fucking minutes for someone to call you back. Get a grip.

  5. "Well, maybe you can help me..." I hate this phrase. I hate it more than, "Temperatures will plummet into the teens tomorrow..." Please do not assume that I can help you only because the person you intended to speak to did not pick up. See #4 for further instruction.

  6. How am I today? None of your business. Please do not ask this question, as you've just revealed yourself to be a slimy salesperson. (see #3) Also, never use the phrase Not bad for a Monday/Tuesday, etc. when I begrudgingly respond to your initial How are you today? I hate that more than #5. And never say TGIF. Ever.

  7. Learn how to pronounce the name of the company. Do not crank call me by listening to the correct pronunciation from me, then hanging up. I'd respect you more if you actually asked me how to pronounce it properly.

  8. "Can I speak to the person in charge of..." (See #3)

  9. Copier sleazebags: When you call and innocently ask, "I'm calling about the copier..." as if you're from our current copier vendor, I smile because I know this is just a sales call. We have at least five copiers, so I will gladly string you along and give you false hope until you hang up. The highlight of my day. Please continue to call.

  10. Phantom Faxers: Have you not figured out why your faxes are not going through? Here's a hint: you're sending them to a phone line. Morons. Please check the number, then dial again.

  11. "Who am I speaking with?" How dare you ask this question. I'm hanging up.

  12. We don't have any Italian pastries working for us, so asking for Mr. Cannoli (instead of Connolly) will make you the brunt of jokes for eternity.

  13. Ballet school bastards: Yes, it's been a while since that never-ending barrage of recorded calls advertising ballet school for children infiltrated our office for two straight days, but I still remember. Some advice: please leave your number available next time you decide to do this so that people like me can call back and rip you a new one.