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The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Leadership Fails

In honor of April Fool’s Day, I thought I’d share some of the most foolish things I’ve seen center leaders do. I’ll also share the wonderful things since there are many who have what it takes. EATING + COACHING = UNPROFESSIONAL: As I joined the supervisor for coaching, she told me the rep would be [...]

Stress in the Contact Center and What You Can Do About It

Anyone who has ever worked in a contact center knows stress. Being a workforce manager is like working in a never-ending game of tug-of-war – and you’re the rope! Operations managers expect perfect service levels, while training managers and supervisors expect regular training sessions – and all of this has to be scheduled without negatively [...]

The CFO’s Role In Customer Experience and Coaching

One of the areas of business operations that is often neglected when it comes to soft skills coaching, is our finance team. The employees handling collections inside a company may receive coaching but from my observations, others dealing with vendor payments and internal customer calls and emails rarely have the individual coaching needed to reach [...]

The Challenges of Employee Retention

The phrase "employee retention" sends shivers down the spines of some folks. And it ought to. Employee turnover is expensive to any company in a variety of ways, not the least of which is the impact on the customer experience, too. According to Gallup: Engaged employees are involved in, enthusiastic about, and committed to their [...]

By |February 23rd, 2016|Agent Engagement, Best Practices / Metrics, Training / Coaching|

Prevent Fires with a Real-Time Frontline

What’s the difference between tactics and strategy? Strategy is what you are trying to accomplish, where tactics answer the question of how you will accomplish it. Look at it this way: strategy is doing the right things. Tactics are doing things right. For most Real Time Analysts in today’s contact centers, every day is like [...]

By |February 22nd, 2016|Best Practices / Metrics, Training / Coaching|

Waterfall Coaching For Agent Engagement

One of the greatest opportunities for agent engagement — and yet from my observations, the least implemented — is the consistent involvement of top leadership in hands-on coaching activities and quality monitoring. Many C-suite and higher-level managers feel that coaching is an activity for the frontline leaders. Or they may do a lot of feedback “telling” in team meetings with [...]

By |January 12th, 2016|Agent Engagement, Innovation, Training / Coaching|

Passing the Customer Journey Ball

Open communication between our marketing, sales and service teams is crucial for creating the best customer experiences. Our marketing teams weave dreams showing total customer bliss. The advertising gurus design fabulous brochures, website animations, and send direct mailings to interested prospects.  Social media shines! When prospects see these ads and posts, they can’t wait to [...]

Coaching Challenges: Apple and Oranges

One of our coaching challenges is to find ways to balance the coaching of skills, that impact processes and solutions, with the soft-skills coaching needed for our agents to provide the empathy and personal touch that our customers want to receive. Sometimes we may feel like these skills are at opposite ends of the spectrum [...]

By |November 10th, 2015|Training / Coaching|

Why So Many Contact Center New Hires Fail

It’s a given that we spend a great deal of time and money recruiting and training agents for our centers. Sometimes we hire someone who looks great on paper and knows how to present themselves well in interviews, but they don’t make it past the training program. Even those who seemed so eager to work [...]

By |October 6th, 2015|Corporate Culture, Training / Coaching|

Too Many Process Cooks Spoil Customer Experience and Agent Support

Unfortunately, the story shared here is based on a real company event. Names have been changed to protect the innocent, but too bad the company name can’t be shared so they can be shamed for their part in poor customer experience and agent support. An agent recently told me about a customer service situation that demonstrates [...]

By |September 8th, 2015|Corporate Culture, Customer Experience, Training / Coaching|