What You Need to Teach Your Call Center Agents

Contact-Call-Center-Agents

Customer expectations are constantly increasing. They want agents who are personable, quick and skilled. As a result, call centers are putting more time, effort and money into their training programs and contact center solutions. These training programs and solutions ensure that the call center agents are prepared to make sure the customer has the best experience possible.

Difficult Calls

Every call center is going to encounter some difficult calls. It is crucial that the team knows exactly how to deal with these tough situations while keeping the customer happy. Here are some ways to ensure your team handles these difficult interactions in the best possible way:

  • Role playing: It is important to always keep your team members sharp. Spend time getting your agents together to role-play different situations that could arise, including situations with difficult customers.
  • Anticipate customer difficulties: When your company makes any major changes difficult calls are more likely to pour in. Make sure your team is aware of any new products, recalls or announcements so that they are not caught off guard with any customers that are upset by the new changes.
  • Create emergency signals: If a customer becomes irate, emergency signals let management know that they should intervene. Emergency signals allow agents to still be on the phone with the customer instead of placing them on hold, which could cause a bigger issue.

Attention to Detail

Working at a call center can be very monotonous, but that is no reason to skimp on details. Since so many customers contact call centers daily, many of them have the same questions. It is important to remember to make sure that each customer’s problem is solved before the call is over. By doing this, your agents can ensure that they answered all of the customer’s questions. This is also a great way to make the customer feels like they are appreciated and that the agents are doing their best to solve the customer’s needs.

If you want to teach this skill to new hires, have them role-play different situations and listen to tapes of more experienced agents. This will show them how to act in different situations and give them examples of how to take care of different customer issues. Make sure to have refresher training sessions every so often to remind agents that it’s always important to focus their attention on the customer.

Behavior

Working in a call center can be very stressful at times, which is why it is so important to choose employees that are able to adapt to the environment. It is also essential to let new employees know what behavior is expected at all times. There are three traits that are crucial for agents to possess when they are working with customers. Agents should always remain calm, patient and friendly.

  1. Calm call center employees are more likely to calm down any upset or angry customers. Agents that remain calm are also more likely to think critically about the situation at hand, giving them an opportunity to fix any issues seamlessly. Calm agents typically do not have a short turn over rate because they are less likely to get frustrated and burnt out.
  1. When customers contact call centers they expect its agents to be patient and clearly explain the issue and how to discover a solution. Although many customers may have the same issue, it is vital to remain patient and take the time to answer whatever questions they have thoroughly. This may seem tedious at times, but the customer will be thankful and leave the conversation feeling like your company really believes in its customers.
  1. Customers always remember excellent customer service and terrible customer service experiences. Friendly agents are going to give their customers a better experience than agents that act uninterested or angry. A friendly demeanor can change a customer’s outlook and help them stay calm while their issue is being resolved.

During the hiring process ask potential employees how they handle stressful situations, watch their demeanor and ask them for examples of times that they diffused difficult situations. This will help create a company culture that focuses its attention on the customers, which will pay off in the long run.

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Bobbi Phelps produces content on behalf of the contact center solutions provider, Kova Corp. An avid writer and learner, she loves to use her skills for engaging others in important topics in creative and effective ways. When she is not working, she loves exploring, hanging out with her dogs, and binge watching shows on Netflix. Tweet her @Bobbi_Phelps or connect with her on LinkedIn.

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