Obviously, call centers exist to serve the needs of the customers who call them. What many contact center managers forget to remember, however, is that an effectively operating contact center doesn’t just help those who call them, but it also provides a slew of distinct benefits for the company itself.
As this recent 1 to 1 Media article explains, “It’s a hub of continuous feedback – feedback that company leaders can and should use to improve customer-facing operations and even internal processes to help make the business operate more effectively and deliver better customer experiences.”
A contact center is like a healthy, loving relationship; if one part of the equation is unsatisfied, the other inevitably becomes impacted too, and there’s not much you can do until this healthy balance is properly restored. Likewise, if your customers are consistently unhappy, the entity fails as a whole. “Best-in-class companies listen to what their customers have to say, act on these insights, and then share with their customers how their feedback has been used,” the article adds, adding that “exceptional companies” will actively seek ways to continuously improve their contact center operations beyond initial feedback requests.
For contact center agents, working shouldn’t necessarily be a job. It should rather serve as a way to engage in an opportunity for mutual benefit. By continually developing your agents, you will inevitably create a more enjoyable working environment, which will without a doubt rub off on your customers. By building on your agents’ best assets, you can truly shape them into exceptional workers who are genuinely happy to help those who call them.
Tom Hoffman (News - Alert), author of said article, thus provides some excellent tips on how to better accommodate the other end of the line – your contact center agents:
- Having a member of upper management (UM) celebrate or publicly recognize/affirm a well-performing agent: “This is particularly important for agents who spend most of their time interacting with customers but far less time talking with peers and supervisors,” Hoffman suggests.
- Create a mentor program between veteran and rookie agents: Helping newbie agents in the form of a partner program may do wonders, as it is less invasive and they won’t feel like they are being singled out. Even better is the fact that they have someone who was once exactly in their shoes helping them, which can be a comforting thought when working toward overcoming obstacles. “Given workload demands, scheduling short, 15-minute mentoring sessions with agents based on quality management reports and feedback can help agents to identify areas for improvement along with concrete steps for achieving those goals,” Hoffman advises.
- The good old fashioned positive reassurance from a supervisor: This age-old technique empowers agents to make critical decisions during moment-of-truth situations with customers, which in the long run, can make a big impact on business, Hoffman says.
At the end of the day, agents come together to form the heartbeat of a call center, and they must be acknowledged and helped accordingly. Once you begin working toward internally improving your own company in addition to your customers, you will find the key to long-term success.
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Edited by Rachel Ramsey