More Essential Language – Formal and Informal
In this section, you will learn the different phrases to use depending on the person you are speaking with. You will use a more formal language if you are speaking to someone you have never met or if they are more senior than you.
You can use informal language if you know the person or if you know they have a much more relaxed culture (more about that in our next section!). Often, younger people will use a more informal language on the phone.
|May I know who’s calling please / Who should I say is calling?||Who’s calling please?|
|May I speak to Mr Smith please?||Can I speak to John, please?|
|Is Mr Smith available?||Is John there?|
|I’m afraid Mr Smith is not available at the moment.
Would you mind calling back in half an hour?
|Sorry, John’s not here at the moment. Can you call back in half an hour?|
|Would you mind holding?||Do you want to hold?|
|May I know the subject of your call.||How can I help you?|
|Would you like to leave a message?||Can I take a message?|
|Could I have your name please?||Can I have your name please?|
|Could I take your name and contact number please?||What’s your name and number please?|
|I’ll pass him the message as soon as he steps out of the meeting.||I’ll give him the message as soon as the meeting is finished.|
|How can I be of service?||How can I help?|
|Thank you very much for your help.||Thanks for your help.|
|Thank you very much for taking the time to talk to me today.||Thanks for your time.|
|I’m looking forward to speaking to you again on Friday.||Speak to you on Friday.|
|Give Paula my regards.||Say hi to Paula.|
|I’m returning your call as promised.||I’m just calling you back.|
|I’m sorry could you excuse me for one minute while I get a pen?||Let me just get a pen.|
|I’m sorry could you give me a moment to pull up the email.||Just give me a second to find the email.|
|Would you mind calling back a little later?
Could you possibly call back a little later?
|Can you call back later?|