Agriculture Communication

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Answering the Phone

The way you answer the phone forms a caller's first impression of the NDSU Extension Service and you.

Be warm and enthusiastic because your voice might be the only impression of the Extension Service a caller will get.

A few examples, depending what office you are in:

  • NDSU Extension Service _____ County, (your name) speaking. How may I help you?
  • NDSU Ag Communication, (your name) speaking. How may I help you?
  • NDSU Carrington Research Extension Center, (your name) speaking. How may I help you?
  • NDSU Extension Center for Community Vitality, (your name) speaking. How may I help you?

Speak slowly and clearly when answering so people can understand you.

Get all the details if you have to take a message for someone. If you can’t spell a name, ask the caller to spell it for you. Make sure the message gets to the intended recipient.

If you are out of the office, update your voice mail message to let the caller know when you will return. Provide any other pertinent information, but keep the message as short as possible.

When leaving a voice mail message, tell people your name and who you work for, give your phone number slowly, provide a quick summary of why you are calling, tell them if the call needs to be returned and be pleasant.

Phone Directory Listing

Extension Service Offices

To be consistent, NDSU Extension Service county offices should be listed in the phone directory as (name of county) Extension Service office

If your county is able to cross-reference the name, use NDSU Extension Service (name of your county) office.

Research Extension Centers

If the city name is used in the REC title, use the city title first -- for example, Carrington Research Extension Center.

If the name of the city is not in the title, list the city after the title -- for example, Central Grasslands Research Extension Center, Streeter.

As a cross-reference, use Research Extension Center, (name of city).

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