Introduction to Telephoning 1- Lower Level Version

Telephoning 1: Getting through Lower Level
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Conversation C
A: Plus One Biotechnology Limited. Jane speaking. How can I help you?
B: Hello. Can I speak to someone in your marketing department please?
A: Of course. What is it concerning, please?
B: It’s about the conference next month.
A: You need to speak to John Thatcher, then. I’ll just check if he is available. Can I ask your name please?
B: Of course. This is Lars Johansson from Trondheim Medical Sciences.
A: Okay Mr Johansson. I’m putting you on hold
B: Okay, thank you.

A: Mr Johansson?
B: Yes?
A: Sorry to keep you waiting. I’m afraid Mr Thatcher is on another line at the moment. Would you like me to take a message?
B: No, that’s alright. I’ll call back later.
A: Okay. I’ll tell him you called.
B: Thank you. Goodbye.
A: Goodbye.
……………………………………………………………………………………………

Conversation B
A: Good morning. Plus One Biotechnology Ltd. How can I help you?
B: Good morning. This is Lars Johansson phoning from Trondheim Medical Sciences again. Can you put me through to Mr Thatcher please?
A: I’ll just check if he’s free. Can you hold the line please?
B: Okay.

A: I’m sorry, Mr Thatcher is in a meeting at the moment. Would you like to speak to his secretary?
B: Actually, I really need to speak to him in person. Could you ask him to call me back?
A: Of course. Can I take your name and number, please?
B: Yes. This is Lars Johansson from Trondheim Medical Sciences. The dialling code for Norway is four seven, then it’s 1323 764609.
A: Okay Mr Johansson. I’ll pass your message onto him. Was there anything else?
B: No, that’s all thanks.
A: Okay. Thank you for calling. Goodbye.
B: Goodbye.
……………………………………………………………………………………………

……………………………………………………………………………………………
Conversation D
A: Good afternoon. Plus One Biotechnology Ltd.
B: Hello. This is Lars Johansson from Trondheim Medical Sciences. Sorry to trouble you again, but I’m afraid I still need to speak to Mr Thatcher from the Marketing Department. Is he available?
A: I’m sorry, can you repeat your name please?
B: Sorry. It’s Johansson, Lars Johansson.
A: I’m terribly sorry, Mr Johansson. Mr Thatcher had to rush out to meet a client. Can I take a message?
B: Actually, it’s quite urgent. Could you possibly give me his mobile number?
A: I’ll connect you to Mr Thatcher’s secretary. She will be able to help you. Please hold.

C: Hello. Marketing Department. Mr Thatcher’s office.
B: Hello. This is Lars Johansson from Norway. I really need to get in touch with Mr Thatcher.
C: Yes, hello Mr Johansson. This is Judy Baxter, Mr Thatcher’s secretary. Reception explained everything to me. He’s on his way to a meeting now, but he has his mobile phone with him. Shall I give you his mobile number?
B: Yes, please. Just a moment, I’ll get a pen and paper.
C: Okay.

B: Okay, I’m ready.
C: Okay, it’s 089 773 7482.
B: Can I just check that number back? 089 773 7482.
C: Yes, that’s right.
B: Great, I’ll phone him now.
C: Please let me know if you have any trouble contacting him.
B: Okay. Thank you. Goodbye.
C: Thank you. Goodbye.
…………………………………………………………………………………………
Conversation A
(mobile answer machine) Hello. You are through to John Thatcher’s mobile. I’m afraid I can’t answer the phone at the moment but if you leave a message with your name and number after the tone I will phone you back as soon as I can. beep
B: Hello. This is Lars Johansson from Trondheim Medical Sciences. I’ve been trying to get in contact with you about…
D: Hello. Hello.
B: Ah, hello. Mr Thatcher? Finally! I’ve been trying to contact you all day.
D: I’m sorry. The signal isn’t good and I can’t hear you very well. Can you speak a little louder please?
B: I’m sorry. I was saying…
D: I’m sorry, the signal is breaking up. Maybe you should…beep (the line is cut).
……………………………………………………………………………………………..
How many phone calls does Mr Johansson have to make?

What are the reasons why he can’t speak to Mr Thatcher?
Put these problems in the order they happen:

Mr Thatcher is in a meeting

Mr Thatcher starts walking somewhere where his mobile phone doesn’t work (for example in an elevator or on an underground train) and Mr Johansson is cut off

Mr Thatcher is on another line (= is speaking to someone else on the phone)

Mr Thatcher was out of the office meeting a client

Mr Thatcher doesn’t answer his mobile phone, so Mr Johansson starts leaving a message on his mobile phone

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Telephoning Polite Language Review 

Find more polite ways of saying these things in the texts above:
1) What do you want?

2) I want to speak to someone in the marketing department

3) Give me your name

4) Wait

5) He’s speaking to someone else on the phone now

6) Let me speak to Mr Thatcher

7) Wait

8) No, I have to speak to only him

9) Tell him to call me back

10) Give me your name and telephone number

11) And?

12) Nothing more

13) Again, I must speak to Mr Thatcher from the Marketing Department

14) Is he free?

15) Tell me your name again

16) Very sorry

17) Give me your message

18) Quickly!

19) Wait

20) Do you want the number of his mobile phone?

21) Tell me if this is the right number

22) Speak loudly

Test each other in pairs, then roleplay whole conversations. The person who can contact someone the quickest is the winner.

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ANSWER KEY
1) What do you want? HOW CAN I HELP YOU?

2) I want to speak to someone in the marketing department CAN I SPEAK TO SOMEONE IN YOUR MARKETING DEPARTMENT PLEASE?

3) Give me your name CAN I ASK YOUR NAME PLEASE?

4) Wait I’M PUTTING YOU ON HOLD

5) He’s speaking to someone else on the phone now I’M AFRAID MR THATCHER IS ON ANOTHER LINE AT THE MOMENT

6) Let me speak to Mr Thatcher CAN YOU PUT ME THROUGH TO MR THATCHER?

7) Wait CAN YOU PUT ME THROUGH TO MR THATCHER PLEASE?

8) No, I have to speak to only him I REALLY NEED TO SPEAK TO HIM IN PERSON

9) Tell him to call me back COULD YOU ASK HIM TO CALL ME BACK?

10) Give me your name and telephone number CAN I TAKE YOUR NAME AND NUMBER PLEASE?

11) And? WAS THERE ANYTHING ELSE?

12) Nothing more THAT’S ALL THANKS

13) Again, I must speak to Mr Thatcher from the Marketing Department I STILL NEED TO SPEAK TO MR THATCHER FROM THE MARKETING DEPARTMENT

14) Is he free? IS HE AVAILABLE?

15) Tell me your name again CAN YOU REPEAT YOUR NAME PLEASE?

16) Very sorry I’M TERRIBLY SORRY

17) Give me your message CAN I TAKE A MESSAGE?

18) Quickly! IT’S QUITE URGENT

19) Wait JUST A MOMENT

20) Do you want the number of his mobile phone? SHALL I GIVE YOU HIS MOBILE NUMBER?

21) Tell me if this is the right number CAN I JUST CHECK THAT NUMBER BACK?

22) Speak loudly CAN YOU SPEAK A LITTLE LOUDER PLEASE?
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Teachers’ instructions: Cut up the first worksheets and get students to put them in the order they happened. See Onestopenglish.com more instructions.

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PDF version for easy printing: Telephoning1Elementary

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