Telephoning- Communication Breakdown Roleplay


Tricky telephoning roleplays for checking/ clarifying practice

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Lesson Plan Content:

Telephoning communication breakdown roleplays

Choose situations below and roleplay related (whole) phone calls with your partner.


You are put through to the wrong person


You don’t know who to speak to




You don’t know which extension number


The receptionist mispronounces your name


The person you want to speak to has left the company



Your mobile battery is running out


Nobody with the name you are asking for works in the company



There is a lot of background noise your end


You are put on hold for so long that you have to hang up and phone again

Someone phoned and left a number on your answer machine, but you couldn’t understand any other parts of the message


You can’t pronounce the name of the person you want to speak to (“Mr. Rousseau”)


You have dialled the wrong number


You can’t hear the person’s voice very well




You can’t understand their pronunciation


You can’t understand about 50% of what is being said


You have a bad signal on your mobile




The person you are speaking to won’t stop speaking and finish the conversation


You are being asked to agree to something but still don’t really understand what is being proposed

The person you are speaking to talks quickly and says numbers and names you need to write down without pausing


The person who phones you starts talking about an urgent matter but you have no idea who is speaking

The person you are speaking to tries to bring the conversation to a close without giving you information they promised.

How well do you think you coped with the situations?

What hints would you give people on communicating on the phone in English? What about business telephone communication in your own language?

Do you think it is worth having a company policy on telephone communications? If so, what would you include in it?

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