Last week we started talking about the different characteristics that are usually common amongst the best customer call center agents out there. They have a good memory, pay attention to detail, are organized while staying flexible depending on how situations play out and most of all are friendly. Here’s five more to keep you busy.
Calm Under Pressure
Dealing with frustrated customers all day isn’t easy. People react in various ways, often feeling ashamed at how they acted once they get off the call. Being able to remain calm despite various verbal tirades being thrown them (or a chatterbox), staying calm is crucial otherwise, your customer satisfaction levels will drop tremendously.
Effective Communication Skills
Um, yea, obviously you are a call center agent. This means more than being an effective speaker, the more important communication skill is listening. Being able to take in the information from the call and provide a solution in words they can understand will help provide solutions first time around.
This is tricky as looking at an agent’s raw numbers and seeing them processing lots of calls is cool, but they need to be effective calls. You need to ensure they aren’t sacrificing quality for speed. If it takes 50% longer to resolve a call, but you know they don’t need to call back as their problem is solved, that’s a win. Note: this means your agent will need to know how to deal with the inevitable…why did they take so long to answer my call from customers if the speed has been slower recently.
No two calls are the same in call centers. While there are numerous standard operating procedures, they don’t fit the case of all customer queries. A great call center agent will be able to identify how they can move away from the standard operating procedure without bending their own guidelines to provide a helpful solution. Often the customer will know they’ve come up with a unique solution for them and in this case be very helpful.
A call center can spend hours trying to get a new agent up to speed. This is all well and good but self-motivation comes from within. This can mean a bunch of things, but in general, it’s the way that they want to continue to learn. They won’t rest on their laurels getting by with the bare minimum. They’ll ask for feedback, ongoing training, and volunteer for more responsibilities.
In addition to the five last week, you are probably thinking that these are all characteristics of a nice person. That’s quite true, but the call center can be a pressure cooker situation and customers often let their nasty side out and having the right characteristics to resolve the issues is key. If you can find call center agents with the majority of these characteristics, you’ll soon have an A-team at your disposal.