HomeKnowledgeSEVEN IN TEN young workers avoiding phone calls due to anxiety

SEVEN IN TEN young workers avoiding phone calls due to anxiety

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Nearly 70% of young construction workers have admitted to avoiding answering customer calls in the last year over anxiety of dealing with phone calls.

And more than 60% of all construction workers say they have also avoided answering their work phone to customers in the last year over fears and concerns about dealing with calls.

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The findings are part of a new independent report commissioned by telephone answering service provider Face For Business, which surveyed 250 office based employees in the construction sector.

The research found a majority of office workers have avoided customer calls due to phone anxiety, a fear of talking on the phone.

Nearly one in five workers surveyed said they suffered from a general fear of dealing with calls, compared to other forms of communication, like emails.

One in 10 said they had avoided calls over fears of a confrontation with an unhappy customer and just fewer said they were concerned they wouldn’t understand the caller, or would be judged for their own accent.

Another 7% said they were worried about being overheard and judged by their managers.

‘Extreme’ anxiety a real problem in construction

More concerning is that 25% of employees surveyed in the new report rated their level of phone anxiety between very anxious and extremely anxious when faced with answering the phone.

One in five said they experienced slight anxiety when their work phone rang.

Emails and text overtake phone calls as preferred comms method

With the majority of office based employees in the construction sector claiming to have suffered from phone anxiety in the last year, it’s not likely that the phone is among the least preferred methods of communication.

More than 60% said that the phone is their least preferred method of dealing with customer, compared to just 4% who said they preferred the phone when dealing with customer enquiries.

When it comes to preferred methods of communication, email is by far the most preferred option among office based construction workers.

81% said they preferred to deal with enquiries through email, saying it meant they could deal with enquiries at their own pace and not be under pressure to deal with issues immediately.

Getting to grips with phone calls essential for construction companies

It’s clear that the construction sector has a problem when it comes to employees and dealing with phone calls.

With a quarter of employees experiencing extreme phone anxiety and 60% having avoided answering the phone in the last 12 months, more needs to be done to provide employees with the confidence to deal with calls, or give them support.

Commenting on the survey results, Andy MacGregor, Managing Director at Face For Business, said:

“The level of phone anxiety that seems to be present in the construction sector is worrying, especially when you consider the fact that many employees are too scared to even pick up the phone because they’re so concerned about speaking to a customer.

“More definitely needs to be done to provide support to employees who are feeling anxious. Perhaps what’s most concerning is the proportion of employees who are avoiding calls because they’re concerned about being judged by their managers.

“Employee welfare is a big thing today, and given that dealing with calls is a central part of office life, we need to see improvement in employee support and phone management.”

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