Category Archives: Telephoning

BEP 72 INT (Transcript & Activities) – Telephoning: Leaving a Voicemail Message

Have you ever started to leave a message on someone’s voicemail, then when you heard the “beep” sound, you didn’t know what to say? When you’re speaking a foreign language, talking without preparation can be challenging, especially when you cannot see or hear the person you’re talking to. But with a little practice, you’ll be a voicemail pro.

That’s what we’ll be studying in this episode – useful phrases and language for voicemail messages, so that next time you here that “beep” you’ll know exactly what to say.

Key Language: Telephone Greetings, Reason for Calling & Leaving a Message

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Study Notes

Phrases & Practice
BEP 72 INT – Voicemail Message – Quiz

BEP 72 INT – Voicemail Message – Gap-fill

BEP 72 INT – Voicemail Message – Dialog & Vocabulary

BEP 72 INT – Voicemail Message – Language 1

BEP 72 INT – Voicemail Message – Language 2

BEP 72 INT – Voicemail Message – Language 3

BEP 72 INT – Voicemail Message – Flashcards


Listening Questions: BEP 72 INT – Telephoning: Leaving a Voicemail Message

1) What is Mark Rand hoping to talk to Sylvie about?

2) When will he be available to take Sylvie’s call?

3) How does Mark put a positive finish on the message?

BEP 69 INT (Transcript and Exercises) – Telephoning: Leaving a Message

People are busy. When you telephone people, they often aren’t there to take your call, so you need to leave a message. And almost everyone has to answer the telephone and take a message sometimes. Doing so professionally leaves a good impression on your customers, colleagues and boss.

In this business English podcast lesson we will hear a bad example and a good example of taking and leaving a telephone message.

Justin Thomas is with Trivesco, a major shipyard, or maker of ships. He is calling Sylvie Peterson at Daneline, a shipping company. Sylvie is a sales and purchase (S&P) broker. A broker is a middleman or negotiator. Sylvie specializes in negotiating the purchase of “newbuildings” or newly built ships. Amy, the receptionist, answers the phone.

Key Language: Telephoning, Checking Back & Confirming

Online Activities & Exercises

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Study Notes

Phrases & Practice
BEP 69 INT – Leaving a Message – Quiz

BEP 69 INT – Leaving a Message – Gap-fill

BEP 69 INT – Leaving a Message – Dialog & Vocabulary

BEP 69 INT – Leaving a Message – Language 1

BEP 69 INT – Leaving a Message – Language 2

BEP 69 INT – Leaving a Message – Flashcards


Listening Questions: BEP 69 INT – Telephoning: Leaving a Message

Bad Example
1) Does Amy answer the phone professionally?

2) Is Justin prepared?

Good Example
1) How does Amy answer the phone?

2) What is Mark calling about?

3) How does Amy make sure that she has got Mark’s correct phone number?

BEP 54 ADV (Transcript & Activities) – Resolving the Complaint

This is the second in a two-part Business English Pod series on handling angry customers on the telephone. In today’s show we’ll be looking at how to resolve the customer’s complaint.

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Study Notes

Phrases & Practice
BEP 54: Resolving the Complaint – Quiz

BEP 54: Resolving the Complaint – Gap-fill


Listening Quiz: (Click a question to see the answer)

1) How does Sandy show that he is actively listening to Steve?

2) What does Steve need?

3) What steps does Sandy take to ensure that Steve is satisfied with the outcome of the call?

BEP 53 ADV (Transcript & Exercises) – Handling Complaints: Empathizing

Good customer service is essential to success in any industry, but it is particularly important in the service and hospitality sector. “Hospitality” means treating guests well; and here, we’re talking specifically about hotels. Because service is so vital to hospitality, hotels are a good place to look for excellent service practices.

We’ll see that a very important part of handling angry customers is showing empathy: Empathy is similar to sympathy – it means showing that you understand the customer’s pain.

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Study Notes

Phrases & Practice
BEP 53: Complaints – Empathizing – Quiz

BEP 53: Complaints – Empathizing – Gap-fill


Listening Quiz: (Click a question to see the answer)

Bad Example:

1) How does the customer, Steve, learn the service associate’s name?

2) What is Steve’s problem?

3) How could Jenna have handled the complaint better?

Good Example:

1) When Steve says, “I’m at the end of my rope,” what does he mean?

2) What does Sandy do to calm Steve down?

BEP 48 (Transcript & Exercises) – Cold Calling: Dealing with Objections and Closing the Call


Download BEP 48 ADV – Cold Calling: Dealing with Objections

This is the last in our three-part Business English Podcast series on cold calling. In this lesson, we’ll learn how to deal with several typical kinds of objections that a potential customer might raise.

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Study Notes

Phrases & Practice
BEP 48: Dealing with Objections and Closing the Call – Quiz

BEP 48: Dealing with Objections and Closing the Call – Gap-fill


Listening Quiz: (Click a question to see the answer)

BEP 48 ADV – Cold Calling: Dealing with Objections and Closing the Call

1) When Steve asks for an appointment, what is Linda’s first response?

2) What is Linda’s second objection?

3) How does Steve deal with Linda’s objections?