Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Attitude goes a long way.

     One of the biggest complaints I get from both callers and coworkers are the attitude and level of disrespect that is given. Most of us that have called into an 800 number have been so jaded by previous experiences that we automatically assume that the call will end poorly. Thos of us taking the calls automatically go on the defensive as soon as we hear a tone in your voice. This is where I will be focusing on today.

     As a caller, the best weapon you have in documentation of your issue. The next best weapon is your attitude. I know you can be frustrated and angry with whatever the problem is, but to lose your composure is not the best avenue to go. Think of it in the old motto you catch more flies with honey than vinegar. Same goes with people. Most of us on the receiving end of the call want to help, but cannot battle fixing and issue and playing psychiatrist as well. Believe me; I have had to do my share of that but it makes for a long, drawn out call for both parties. Before calling in, take inventory of what you have to discuss, what you want to achieve and how to get there.

     I have trained many agents on the phones and explained to them the first rule is to not take anything personally. Customers are not attacking you. You are just a voice on the phone representing the company they are calling. That doesn’t mean the caller can belittle or berate you. I have heard caller say to agents, “You’re the front line so you have to take my anger.” No we don’t. We need to solve your problem and help you out. We do not need to be your verbal punching bag because of an issue that frustrates you. I’m not saying you shouldn’t voice your displeasure but there is a person on the other end of the line. That person is the one you are asking for help, you may want to look at addressing them differently. If you treat the person with respect, you are going to get a more responsive, attentive, and helpful agent.

     In closing, rule of thumb is to try and keep your cool when calling. I have been on both ends and neither was a good feeling. Getting yelled at from someone and yelling at a rep didn’t solve my problems and honestly made it counterproductive for me.

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