Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Quick Tips to Re-Humanize Your Call Center

We have this theory that a robot apocalypse is in the works. They've already started slowly replacing call center agents. Well, maybe not. But it sure sounds like it. Sometimes we hear call center employees who are so one with their script that they come across a bit robot-like.

A call handling guide, or at least a few tips, could be really useful if your call center agents are starting to sound mechanical.

Smile for the Camera — or Phone


Think back to your first days on the phone when you treated every call with a helpful tone and a smile, even though they couldn't see you. One of the simplest things you can do to sound more pleasant on the phone (despite the fact that it's now your millionth call) is smile. It might sound silly, but listen to your friends or coworkers next time they talk to you and try to notice the difference between a straight-faced tone of voice and a smiley-faced tone of voice. Here are a few other tips that can help improve your tone on a phone call.

Say My Name, Say My Name


Destiny's Child had the right idea; if you don't share your name, the caller won't feel as comfortable talking to you. Let the caller know you're a human simply by telling them who you are. It might sound obvious, but if you've taken hundreds of calls in the past month, you could easily forget to mention it. Sharing your name with a caller and asking for their name in return makes the call more personable and friendly, so you'll both feel more at ease during the conversation.

Use Your Manners


Remember all those times your parents and grandparents reminded you to say please and thank you? Well, we're going to back them up on that. When you're handling a phone call with a prospective client, politeness is key. If you're not polite on the phone, callers end up feeling neglected and associate negative feelings with your company. Keep in mind that 78 percent of consumers bail on intended purchases if they have a bad experience with a customer service rep. That's a lot of leads you could rescue just by saying a few pleasantries.

Put these tips to the test. If they work, consider permanently adding them to a full-length call handling guide.