Are you the type of call center agent or leader people hope you’ll be?

Who are You?

Are you the type of call center agent or leader people want to talk to? There’s an easy way to answer that question. How many of your contacts are loyal customers or loyal employees?

Take a look at these characters and their characteristics. Then take a look in the mirror. As you read these characteristics, I’m certain you’ll find a few to identify with.

Be careful. It’s not just a matter of having good agent or leader characteristics, it’s a matter of mastering them.

You can’t just say, “Yeah, that’s me.” Rather you say, “How good am I at them?” That’s the real test of who you are, and what your skill level is.

Here are the characters and characteristics of good and great contact center agents and leaders:

Building a foundation for short-term success, and long-term wealth, Mr. Relationship understands that sometimes you have to sacrifice short-term gains in order to build for the future. He doesn’t focus on quota. He focuses on “best.” Every manager wants this agent on his or her team. With Mr. Relationship, there are always fewer complaints from customers, and more reorders. He creates loyal customers. He cares about the customer without judging the customer’s ability to purchase a product.

Mrs. Humble (an endangered species of the contact center agent or leader) gets the job done, sticks at it till she wins, customers and employees love her, she loves to serve. She gets the order, makes a fat commission, brags to no one, and is grateful for her job. Cut her veins — she bleeds the company’s colors — but always has the customer’s or employees’ best interest at heart.

You don’t have to wonder if Mrs. I’m Successful is successful or not. She’ll tell you herself. She’ll tell you by the clothes she wears. She’ll tell you by the car she drives. She’ll tell you by the names she drops, and the vacations she takes. Yes, there has to be some achievement behind the process. But you have to ask yourself, “At what price?” Unfortunately, Mrs. I’m Successful, is often viewed by customers or employees as fake, phony, or fraud. Eventually, the parade she is leading becomes old, overused, and boring.

In order to become successful, in order to build relationships, in order to become a superstar, there has to be a foundation of consistency. Mr. Consistent can morph into any one of those. Customers love consistency, because they know they can rely on and depend on the agent or leader to meet or exceed their needs. I believe consistency to be one of the best qualities a successful agent or leader can possess. And that consistency can be learned — you just have to practice everyday. Mr. Consistent is the agent or leader who shows up everyday, straps on the work gloves, and goes to work. They may need to be reminded to take a break or their lunch, but you will always know where to find them.

Ms. Hustle doesn’t have all the skill in the world. But she loves to serve, returns phone calls in an instant, is the master of new technology, and customers love the woman because she gets the job done fast. Ms. Hustle is loyal to company and customers alike. She doesn’t sell by the book, but she always sells by the rules. She may be moving like she has her hair on fire, but she is getting the job done. You might think she talks too fast, jumps to quickly, or seems erratic, but at the end of day, she delivers results.

Better than Mrs. Successful, Mr. Superstar has managed to build relationships over an extended period of time and derives incredible income from having fun with customers and employees. He smiles, all the time. He laughs with customers and seems to be having the time of his life because he is. Mr. Superstar will get a call from a customer telling him that a competitor has come in the door and was promptly asked to leave. Mr. Superstar is both a consultant and a trusted advisor. He has established relationships and has gone beyond his own success to help customers build their business — so he can earn more of his. You may not like every characteristic of Mr. Superstar, and he has a bit of an ego — but it’s because he’s doing things the right way. I’ll throw this challenge at you: If you feel Mr. Superstar is a bit arrogant, you may be confusing his arrogance with his self-confidence. And, you may be confusing his ego — with your envy.


Mr. Gregory.
I don’t claim to be a perfect contact center agent or leader. I do claim to be the best contact center agent and leader I know. I tend to take a higher risk-oriented position when it comes to talking with customers and employees or creating a buying atmosphere with either. Does it work all the time? Grab a handful of reality, Sparky, nothing works all the time. But mine does work most of the time. And there’s an added bonus. I’m having a blast at it. I’m doing what I love. And I’m earning a good living helping customers, agents, and contact center leaders. I look forward to helping you.

Great contact center agents or leaders are not born or made. They evolve over time based on their dedication to excellence and their willingness to serve. Two traits of successful contact center agents and leaders, self-awareness and authenticity. Self-Awareness means you are aware of your natural talents or who you are. Authenticity means you consistently use your natural talents to achieve your goals. If you are not sure about who you are or how you might use your natural talents, then you should complete the ADVanced Insights Profile at this link:

 http://rac.innermetrix.com/vo/req.php?id=cd11fcc1

I will send you the FREE sections of the profile report and some ideas to get you started on your pursuit of excellence.

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About davegregory

Dave Gregory, Chief Learning Officer for Inspired Performance Solutions, Inc., believes in the power of the strengths movement. During the past 15 years, Dave managed the Learning Solutions activities of Qwest’s Mass Markets Group, including call centers, retail stores, indirect retail, e-business, collections, alternative markets and the small business teams. Mr. Gregory graduated from Creighton University’s School of Law in 1993 earning a Juris Doctor. He completed his undergraduate education receiving a BSBA with an emphasis in marketing from the University of Nebraska-Omaha in 1990. Mr. Gregory has more than 25 years experience in business development and consulting.

One response to “Are you the type of call center agent or leader people hope you’ll be?”

  1. jbeachjrJim Beach says :

    As a training manager supporting call centers, I’ve met and interacted with everyone of these folks mentioned. I have also had the opportunity to take part in the prgrams Dave Gregory has presented. Have we turned all of our agents to the good side? No, though we can be sure their direct managers know and are helping with the steps to get all of them to the next level of greatness. Thanks for the insight, and the help. Your program works!

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