6 Strategies For New Call Centre Agents

Congratulations! You just hired a new call centre employee. They spent a few weeks in training and now they are scheduled to hit the call centre floor. The question is, are they ready to handle your customers inquiries and complaints?

Are your agents feeling overwhelmed? Most likely!

Getting the bodies in the seats to reduce wait times and meeting the customer’s needs is critical. And, you don’t want to stress out the agents and have them quit.

If you have your new agents focus on these 6 principles - most of your calls will be winners.

1.      Confidence

It doesn’t matter what type of calls you are making or taking, you need to sound confident on the phones. If you don’t sound confident, the customer won’t believe what you are saying.

That’s great but what if they don’t have confidence yet?

Fake it until you make it.

In between calls, have your team practice positive self talk. Have them say things like “I am good on the phones, customers want to buy from me”

If they had a good call, cheer their progress. And obviously, you as a leader need to be there. Get away from your desk, walk around, and help your team.

2.      Listening

Most new hires are nervous about going on the phones. They tend to talk fast and they are unsure of themselves. Good listening skills are critical to sales and customer service.

When you don’t listen, you miss key pieces of information that will help solve the customers problem. Listening means you are focusing on your customer. It gives you time to think and find a way to solve the problem.

3.      Build Rapport By Using The Customers Name

With every customer contact, you want to solve problem and create a connection. Every contact call is an opportunity to show your customers how much you care, and strengthen your brand. However, it's not always easy to make and keep your customers happy.

One of the easiest ways to create a connection with a customer is to use the customer’s name. Everyone loves to hear their name. It's a simple and easy step to help you build rapport. 

4.      Ask Good Questions

Asking quality questions will give your agents the ability to steer the conversation, create credibility, and not prolong the call. However, you can't ask effective questions unless you are closely listening to customer and understanding the problem.

Paraphrasing the customers concern and then following up with quality questions will help your agents steer the call and satisfy the customers needs.

5.      Empathy

It’s about understanding what the customer has gone through. Sometimes the customer is upset. Really upset! You can use key phrases like “I understand”, “That has happened to me”, “I agree”, “I hear you”, “I get it, let me see what I can do”

When you show the customer empathy, most times it will calm a potential escalation situation.

6.      Have Fun

The call centre role is not easy. They will have great calls and difficult ones. They need to expect it. If they come into work with a bad attitude, they will hate the job and it will rub off on other members of the team. And that wouldn't take long.

Ramping up new hires is not easy. But, if you can have your team focus on these 6 core principles, you will be off to a great start! 

About the Author Ken Matthews

Ken Matthews is the VP of Collections at Peter Stephan Law Firm

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