ST. LOUIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Since its first dramatic moment on March 10, 1876 with the now famous words: “Mr. Watson, come here, I want to see you,” the telephone has had a remarkable and sometimes quirky history.
“We’ve forgotten some of the incidents in the development of the telephone,” said Nancy Friedman, president of Telephone Doctor Customer Service Training, headquartered in St. Louis MO. “For a device that has shaped our lives for over a century, its significant evolution is often taken for granted. In anticipation of celebrating its 143rd anniversary, here are some of the more notable events.”
- AHOY, HOY. Alexander Graham Bell, inventor of the telephone, originally wanted to answer the phone by saying, “Ahoy, Hoy!” Thanks to Thomas Edison and his insistence, we answer the phone with a simple, “Hello.”
- At the first demonstration of the telephone, the public was intrigued, but doubted its practical use. Acceptance of the phone was slow, with doctors and pharmacists as its primary customers. (Just think - now the doctors don’t even come to the phone!)
- Increased phone usage led to the switchboard. Initially names were used for identification, which was later followed by the publication of the phone book. Numbers followed later.
- More women than men were operators because women were found to be more friendly, docile and accommodating than men. In New York alone, in 1910, there were 6,000 women switchboard operators. At this time, the telephone was only operable 12 hours a day. Imagine not being able to make a phone call at night! (And imagine – NO CELL PHONES?)
- In 1915, the first long distance call took place covering 14,000 miles of wires from Bell in New York to Watson in San Francisco.
“The genius of an educator of the deaf who had no background in mechanics or invention, Bell saw his device become perhaps the most indispensable tool of technology. It brought the country, and later the world, together. Imagine what the future holds!” states Friedman.
The telephone is one of the most abused instruments around. Complaints of poor service ranks high and the most frustrating of all – according to https://twitter.com/clutch_co, is being put on hold.
Telephone Doctor Customer Service Training’s online platform (www.serviceskills.com) can help.
Nancy Friedman is a popular speaker on customer service, communication skills and sales. She is founder and president of Telephone Doctor Customer Service Training- St. Louis, MO; who helps companies communicate better with their customers in person and, of course, on the telephone.