Remember that your job is to answer as many calls as possible so we can quickly “filter” out the unnecessary calls and allow legitimate family members and friends to get through.
As such, your interactions should be caring but as brief as possible.
Most people are very open to any help that is offered at this point, and information is the number one thing family members are looking for. You can expect most callers to be cooperative in answering your questions.
Always remain patient and speak using soft and gentle voice tones. Remember that callers are very concerned that their love ones may have been injured or killed.
“What we know is…”
Many time callers will ask you questions that you don’t know the answer to. Remember, callers are desperate for information. When a caller asks questions about the accident, always share the Crisis Information in the box to the left of your screen If you have not already done so. We always start by saying, “What we know is…” instead of, “I don’t know…” so the caller does not feel frustrated and like we are unable to help them. Avoid using any negative word…’We don’t have that info….I cannot help you with that info….’
“I am sorry…”
Have you ever been told, “Don’t say, ‘I am sorry’, because that shows that you are guilty”? In this instance, nothing could be further from the truth. For instance:
Escalating a Call – “Let me get my supervisor…”
As we’ve mentioned, most callers will be understanding and reasonable. However, once in a while you may get a call from someone who is extremely upset or even irate. Our tips for handling callers will work with most calls, so do your best to handle the call yourself. In these rare instances that you are unable to pacify a caller using our usual script and tips, it is time to seek support from your supervisor. Your supervisor will know how to contact one of your specially trained staff members who will be able to help out with these calls. If you find yourself in this situation, ask the caller to please hold while you get someone who can further assist them on the line.
Other Things to Avoid
As a caring person, sometimes your desire is to make a caller feel better about what could indeed be a very tragic situation. However, It is never appropriate to give anyone a false sense of hope. Some things that may seem like a nice thing to say are actually very inappropriate. Here is a list of examples:
Things to Say Instead
Instead of saying the things on the previous slide, here are some alternative for you:
A few words that let the caller know you care might include: