Do all your contact center/customer service agents have a current, up to date improvement plan? Do they understand their goals for quality, sales, conversion or net promotion? There are a lot of centers that just do a quick morning meeting and then get on with their day. If that is the basis for your reps improvement/goal setting then let’s look at something very easy to do that I think can benefit all centers.
We teach all our middle management that the first 30 minutes of an associates day must be totally controlled by the supervisor. We believe it is one of the most important tips that we can give any call center manager. If you know what to do during this time and your supervisors are trained in this aspect it will allow every day get off to a great start and solve many problems before they even have a chance to start!
You can’t expect your employees to exceed the expectations of your customers if you don’t exceed the employees’ expectations of management.” -Howard Shultz CEO Starbucks
How do you educate the supervision in your customer service center? Do you have a training plan at all or do you just take long tenured associates and make them supervisors/team leads when a supervisor leaves? If you hire a supervisor off the street what training do you give them?
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In the Beginning…
In 1985 a small call center was started by my parents with 10 employees in Erie, Pa. It was a family business where I grew up at. I was 9 years old at the time. Business was small but steady allowing for a company with a reputation for quality to take hold. The company grew over the years and a new 75 seat center was opened up in 1990 to support an influx of new business. In those days the majority of business was dealing with outbound credit card sales for major banking institutions. When I came on board full time during college it was 1994. We had just expanded to over 200 seats and business was good. I started out with third shift positions in our IT area leaning the business from the ground up. I had to work my way up through the organization, nothing was handed to me.
Being young, having a Type A personality and being put in-charge of many people can be a recipe for disaster! Many years ago In my mid 20’s I had progressed my way up in the Call Center that I was working at to the job of being the AM Production Coordinator(15 supervisors and 150 agents). My duties were to make sure that the AM shift met all of its qualitative and quantitative goals for both the clients we worked for and the company.
Fear is a strange thing. While it has evolved over millions of years to protect us, so many times it seems to hold us back. Fear sometimes puts thoughts in our heads that stop us from growing and moving past certain “walls” in our life. When we are young, fear is a relatively unknown especially in social circles. Children will just walk up to other kids and talk, laugh and play. At what point does this change? Does it have to? How can we control fear?
I hope you think about these are you begin you business. I think they can help guide you from a lot of mistakes…many I made myself at the very beginning! I got through it and so can you…
You learn some things after running contact centers for 20+ years. The following are 5 tips on changing or creating a great contact center culture in your customer service center.
“You can’t expect your employees to exceed the expectations of your customers if you don’t exceed the employees’ expectations of management.” -Howard Shultz CEO Starbucks