How to Overcome Phone Anxiety at Work

As more and more Millennials are entering the workforce, there is something that they must all confront at one point or another: phone calls. Millennials despise phone calls, with 81% admitting to some anxiety when picking up the phone. We can hardly blame them. They grew up in an age where texting and emailing reigned supreme. However, we can’t hide behind our screens forever. Most jobs require you to talk on the phone with clients, customers, or colleagues, but if you’re an employee suffering from phone anxiety or a manager supervising one, this could pose as a challenge. Thankfully, though, there are ways for someone to get over phone anxiety.

What is phone anxiety?

Have you ever reached for the phone with sweaty hands and a lump in your throat? Then chances are you’re suffering from phone anxiety. There are a whole host of reasons why this may be the case. Part of it is lack of practice, but another reason is that there are a lot of unknowns with a phone call. You don’t know who will pick up or how they’re like, and you don’t have body language to help guide you throughout a conversation. With so much up in the air, it’s no wonder that so many people struggle with phone anxiety.

Practice, practice, practice

Someone with phone anxiety won’t want to hear this, but the only true way to overcome your anxiety is to make phone calls. The more phone calls you have, the less scary the situation will seem, and gradually your anxiety will diminish over time. While you shouldn’t make a hundred phone calls in one day (this will just be too overwhelming), you can start making phone calls gradually. If you supervise someone who has phone anxiety, then consider slowly introducing them by assigning them phone calls once a week or once a month until they get comfortable.

Making a phone call

So, we’ve established that making phone calls will help you overcome your phone anxiety, but how do you go about doing that? A phone call will seem like a herculean task, so it’s best to prepare beforehand to try and decrease your anxiety as much as possible.

Prepare notes

Even if the phone call is only going to be a few minutes long, having some notes in front of you will make you feel more secure while you’re talking. You can even write out a script for when the person first picks up the phone.

What’s your worst fear?

As you’re starting to dial, what is it, exactly, that you’re afraid is going to happen? Identifying your fears ahead of time will help you prepare for them. If, for example, you’re afraid you’ll sound inarticulate, then write out and practice a script ahead of time to prevent that fear from becoming a reality.

Smile and speak with confidence

Easier said than done, right? In these cases, it’s best to fake it till you make it. As you’re talking, smile and speak with an upbeat tone. You may not feel confident, but you’ll sound like you are, and eventually you will be.

Get some feedback

After you hang up, turn to your manager and try to get their feedback on the phone call. With a business phone system from Vaspian, a manager can listen in on a call and even provide feedback in real-time without the person on the other end of the phone realizing. You may even want to listen to a recording of your phone call so that you can find the areas where you need to improve.

Phone anxiety is difficult to overcome, but it’s not impossible. With the right tools and support at hand, you or your employees can be making phone calls with ease. Contact Vaspian today to see how our business phone system can help.

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