Telephone scheduling requires skill, professionalism, confidence, and finesse – not necessarily qualities than anyone off the street will just walk in with. Make sure the person(s) whose job(s) requires extensive phone communication with patients possesses the necessary qualities. Candidates with a clear voice, enthusiasm, and a positive demeanor will be more likely to succeed in this position. But as usual, personality is not everything; it also demands training and preparation.
Remember, on the telephone, you have only your voice. Patients cannot hear facial expressions; they cannot see non-verbal queues. They form a picture of the person answering the phone and an opinion of the professionalism of the practice based exclusively on the quality and tone of the voice and how that person comes across verbally. Telephone sales people keep a mirror at their desks. They understand that the expression on their face is conveyed in their voice. Are you smiling and happy or stressed out and tense? Answer the phone as if you were greeting the patient face-to-face.