Over the next few days I will be blogging about call centre staff. I will explain what they do, how they do it, and ways that you can help them to help you.
Probably the greatest communicators in any area of the customer industry are those people who work in call centres and contact centres. To explain the difference, call centres do nothing but place and answer phone calls whereas contact centres undertake additional tasks such as email and postal inquiries.
A better name for contact centres may be communication centres. Nevertheless I am going to refer to both centres as call centres. Why, it is less letters to type and my two typing fingers are getting tired! I will also refer to call centre employees as agents rather than representatives for the same reason.
Similar to the reasons why people are drawn to become crisis negotiators, the people who work in this industry are also drawn to work there. They are naturally empathetic, have a desire to help others and for the most part are a communicative and friendly group of people. They have a strong desire to help others.
As we know, the main drivers of customer satisfaction regardless of the industry is that the entire service experience met the customer’s expectations, that the customer was treated fairly and that their individual circumstances were taken into account. Customers appreciate staff who are competent, knowledgeable and kept their promise.
Most importantly, the customer was treated with respect. This last point is often hard to achieve with the more challenging (when you read the word challenging in my coming posts you can replace it with the word difficult if that works better for you) amongst us who sometimes get quite personal in our conversations when we don’t get what we want.
Always remember, the person that you are yelling at on the other end of the phone is doing their very best to help you. It is not their fault that your machine broke down, that your internet doesn't work, that your satellite dish blew of the roof, or that your bank balance has gone into overdraft. They are there to help you not to hinder you. They have a set of rules that they have to abide by and will do everything in their power to assist you.
You might feel better by yelling at the agent. Imagine though how the agent feels when they went to work to help people and all that you did was abuse them for simply trying to help.