A phone call from a customer

Listen to the phone call from a customer to practise and improve your listening skills.

Do the preparation task first. Then listen to the audio and do the exercises.

Transcript

Junko: Hello, Junko Mori speaking. How can I help you?

Andrea: Hi, Junko, it's Andrea here from Red Band. I'm calling about our latest order.

Junko: Everything arrived OK, right? We got the delivery confirmation at our end.

Andrea: Yes, everything's fine with the order. I'm calling about the invoice and the payment terms. I need a favour.

Junko: A favour? What do you need?

Andrea: This is a little, er ... difficult, but I need an extension on the payment terms. I know they're usually 30 days, but we're having some cash flow problems. You'd really be helping us out if you could extend it to 60 days.

Junko: I'm not sure if I can do that, Andrea. We've got regulations at our end, and also have to manage our own cash flow.

Andrea: I promise this won't become the norm, Junko. Actually, I also want to place another new order. The same size order as last time. It's for an important customer and they pay on delivery.

Junko: I see. So your cash flow problem will be solved after this new order is delivered.

Andrea: Exactly.

Junko: That sounds good. Hold on, Andrea. Let me see what I can do. Yes, I think we can make an exception this time.

Andrea: That's great, Junko. I appreciate your help.

Junko: And we appreciate your business, Andrea. It works both ways.

Andrea: Thanks again, Junko. Can you send me a quick email confirmation of the payment terms extension?

Junko: Sure, no problem. We're happy to help you.

Andrea: Great. And I'll email you the new order.

Junko: Thanks. I'll keep an eye out for it. Talk to you soon.

Andrea: You too. Goodbye.

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Discussion

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Worksheet81.85 KB

Submitted by Matveeva Masha on Wed, 15/07/2020 - 10:34

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i am not a supplier, but i think the suppliers should to do favour or exception sometimes for important client. because every suppliers do not lose important client and client appreciate your help or exception.

Submitted by ArturoBustillos on Fri, 10/07/2020 - 17:44

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I'm not a supplier, even like that, if I were, I would do it... also if my costumer is a good person

Submitted by Lamiya on Wed, 08/07/2020 - 13:22

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Sometimes, I deal with this kind of demand of extension in term of delivery time. It happens when a manufacturer can not meet the deadline. I think it's normal to help. But as said earlier on, that must not be the norm.

Submitted by Hn0062 on Mon, 06/07/2020 - 15:50

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Yes, I made exceptions more than a few times, when worked. personally, I think that it is a bad behevior about other clients but sometimes some people have problem thus we can help them. when I did it, some of them appricated and I was glad because of it. But some times some of them made annoyed.

Submitted by abudo93 on Sat, 04/07/2020 - 11:11

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Yes I do that, I make exceptions at more than time to our clients, but some of them are really annoying and other are good with the dealing, and I also discovered one thing through it that the clients women better than men.

Submitted by Dariusz on Fri, 03/07/2020 - 19:32

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This issue doesn't concern me. I am not a supplier.

Submitted by muhammad baig on Wed, 01/07/2020 - 17:03

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yes, I could do a favour for my client, if it's our old client and plus he is giving us another order :)

Submitted by JORGE SALAZAR on Wed, 01/07/2020 - 02:28

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I have a problem with the word " our" in brithis , listening the audio, I wonder if in Brithish eglish you can pronunciate as " A "in spanish

Hello Jorge,

I'd recommend you pronounce 'our' as /aʊər/ -- you can hear a recording of it on this dictionary page (click or press on the small audio symbol under the word 'determiner').

This is different from 'a' in Spanish. It has more than one vowel sound. You might try saying 'au' and then 'güa' (I've written these thinking in Spanish orthography; the 'g' isn't pronounced) quickly together -- that is close to the pronunciation of 'our' in British English.

Hope this helps you.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Mr.Anas on Fri, 26/06/2020 - 22:59

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Sometimes, We have to do a favour to our customer. speacially when there is something went wrong with the customer like this problem.

Submitted by Esperance15 on Mon, 22/06/2020 - 21:40

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I work for distribution company, so I work with suppliers and hospitals; meaning I am a customer to suppliers and hospitals are my customers. Suppliers always assist me with quotation extension and I helped hospitals with orders placed query. I always appreciate Suppliers cooperation and its feel so good to help hospitals.

Submitted by Lizochka on Sat, 13/06/2020 - 18:52

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Yes, I think I could do a favour to my clients, but only in the situacion if it was very important clients for our company and if they ask about it in a polite form !!!!!!

Submitted by Sharif Tayyebi on Mon, 08/06/2020 - 19:00

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"It works both ways". What does this sentence mean in another way? Thanks

Hello Sharif Tayyebi,

The phrase ti works both ways in this context means that a situation or action has a similar effect on both parties.

https://www.macmillandictionary.com/dictionary/british/work-both-ways

 

In this case, Junko is telling Andrea that the fact that Andrea is a loyal and valued customer means that Junko is able to help her when she has problems.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Sharif Tayyebi on Mon, 08/06/2020 - 18:47

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I am an assistant professor, so I haven't had any business which needs doing a favour. In my opinion, business needs to deal with customers these days, if there is an important reason to do. Companies and customers usually have the same benefits, so they should help each other when one side needs helping. According to the case, even I sometimes make an exception to my students which have properly and rationally reasons. For instance, if a student cannot come to the class or miss some lectures, I usually help him/her, provided he/she has a problem. Our students have to pay their tuition fees by the time which identifys in the payment terms of a university, but sometimes, they have problems and the administration of university should make an exception for them. I think, regulations are good and they usually ensure the discipline. But it should be part of rules that we can help others with their problems. Best wishes,

Submitted by Vusale on Mon, 08/06/2020 - 13:15

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i just wonder why Andrea is a man? As far as I know Andrea is a female name.

Hello Vusale

While it may be true that 'Andrea' is more often the name of a woman among native speakers of English, around the world, it is a name given to both men and women. The Andrea in this phone call is not a native speaker of English, so it's not unusual for him to have this name.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by MedScience on Sun, 07/06/2020 - 12:58

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Hi. Is there any other listening audios apart from these

Hello MedScience

These are all the pages at the B1 level in our Listening skills, but there are many other pages in General English. I would recommend you have a look at a few pages in Big City Small World, Audio zone, Podcasts, Video zone and Word on the Street (though please note these last two have video, not just audio). Each of those sections has many more pages and you can continue with whichever one you like the most.

Hope this helps.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Adri on Sat, 06/06/2020 - 14:37

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If I had a company, I would deal all to my customers for similitary because I think that make exceptions with only some customers itsn't well.
Yes, I agree with that but sometimes I don´t think it is a problem to open a small exception to a client if it is something important and obviously not to let it become a routine or abuse.

Submitted by tramngoctran on Thu, 04/06/2020 - 00:35

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Until now, I don't have a chance to work directly with customers. I work with my team, and my leader with contact with them. But I hope that I will have a chance to do it and get many experiences, or something like this
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Submitted by Jangchutshomo on Sun, 31/05/2020 - 17:59

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Can someone please tell me how to select multiple answers and put in two groups. I am having problem in task 2.

Hello Jangchutshomo,

To place a second item in one of the boxes, make sure you drop the item on the box itself (it should be marked dark grey) rather than on any answers already in the box. If you drop an item on an item already in the box then it will swap them; if you drop it on the box it will add the new item.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Lilian.omune on Thu, 28/05/2020 - 10:40

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I think making exceptions is very important for important customers but also benefits on both sides should also be highly considered.

Submitted by Abu obayda on Tue, 26/05/2020 - 14:43

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For me, this is due to the regulations where I work.

Submitted by mouna99 on Tue, 26/05/2020 - 11:48

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Yes, when it comes to important customers I do exceptions and favours because I always deal with them
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Submitted by Codjoah on Mon, 25/05/2020 - 18:32

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Hi I work in a National youth entrepreneurship fund an we fund or finance young people projects. Now when the terms of payement arrive, the young entrepreneurs have some cash flow difficulties and aske for extension. Obviously we give them the extension they ask for. however, the extension don't suit them because they activities don't grow up

Submitted by Ayano on Mon, 25/05/2020 - 16:46

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Hello, everyone! I'm Japanese and I'll introduce tradition of Japan to everyone today. It is warabimochi. Have you ever eaten it? It is a kind of Japanese confectionery and tastes so soft and cool. Usually, we eat warabimochi with soybean flour, powdered tea, or dark molasses. Personally, I like to eat warabimochi with soybean flour and dark molasses best. Warabimochi has a long history. It was eaten by the Emperor Heian. Furthermore, it was also emergency provisions for the people on a farm. It is easy to make Warabimochi. It made from powdered warabi, water, and sugar. This is just three ingredients. Warabimochi is famous in Nara and Kyoto so there are many famous shops of Warabimochi. In my opinion, it is not famous for among foreigners than such a like sushi and tempura. However, like a warabimochi, many people in Japan eat Japanese confectionery now and these are low sugar and a calorie. If you want to eat something to sweet, I recommend you eat Japanese confectionery because these are so as sweet as cakes and snacks, but these are more health. For example, Japan has Dango, Daihuku, Monaka, Senbei and so on. It is difficult for everyone to travel to Japan now but if you come to Japan, you try to eat various Japanese confectionery.

Submitted by Miho Watanabe on Wed, 20/05/2020 - 08:47

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I work as a clerk at a super market in japan. Customers often says to me, "I forgot my point card. what should I do?" So I always make exception for the customer, and I give 1 week to the customer to bring the point card. I think this is very good to keep good connection between clerk and customer. Thank you.

Submitted by Tu Le on Wed, 20/05/2020 - 05:13

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In my opinion, do favors or make exceptions for customers needs to be considered carefully to ensure benefit for both sides.

Submitted by IBRAHIM HAMID on Sat, 16/05/2020 - 16:04

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I think to do favour or makes an exception is important for success of any business that controlled by rules (an invoice, payment terms,....etc).

Submitted by Albert Marambio on Tue, 12/05/2020 - 03:59

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In my opinion I could do an excepction ,just if I have the same amount of money in case my customer does not comply with the extension.

Submitted by Rehaf on Mon, 11/05/2020 - 23:58

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wt we call this accent?

Hello Rehaf

As far as I can tell, Junko has a light Japanese accent and Andrea has a light Italian accent.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

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Submitted by AlejoPB on Mon, 11/05/2020 - 19:56

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Yes, on some occasions a had done an exception with an important client my last job. I think that is so important to help our clients and customer when we can do something, as long as that keeps the company's rules, is important to be flexible, due to anything could be happened in anytime.

Submitted by Bhre Satriavi on Sun, 10/05/2020 - 16:36

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i'm still get dificult when speaker was saying "30 days" it's sound err i dont i can't hear clearly

Submitted by mgalezzo on Fri, 08/05/2020 - 01:53

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I think that is very important to maintain a good client, for these reason I always do favors to whom need.

Submitted by senes19 on Tue, 05/05/2020 - 17:57

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Last year I worked an English course in Turkey as a receptionist. Sometimes we encountered same this situation. We can have flexible decision. Because important clients are raising up any company or not. If you interesting wit him very well, you will enforce.
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Submitted by rerre on Tue, 05/05/2020 - 01:42

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Would it be wrong to say "You'll really help us" instead of "You'll really be helping us"? I don't know the difference in this situation. Thank you

Hello rerre,

Grammatically it would not be wrong and it would make sense. However, certain phrases are simply more commonly used by convention and the continuous form is generally used. A common alternative would be 'It would be a great help'.

If you check the transcript you'll notice that we use would rather than will. This is a more polite way of expressing the same thing in this context.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hi Peter, Thank you for your explanation! It was very helpful. rerre