Impact Learning Systems


Attitude Makes a Wonderful Difference Monica Postell

I recently watched a ter­rific video inter­view with Tony Hsieh on Meet the Boss TV about Zap­pos and his busi­ness phi­los­o­phy. You don’t get to work for Zap­pos unless you are pas­sion­ate about cus­tomer ser­vice. It’s core to the company’s cul­ture and "cul­ture fit" accord­ing to Hsieh is the key to hir­ing the right employ­ees. He said that they “hire for atti­tude” because it’s “pretty hard to train a good atti­tude if you don’t (have one).” How true!

Cul­ture fit is really impor­tant to me. I want to feel that work is fun (It’s OK that it’s also hard and may require long hours; that comes with the ter­ri­tory). Hap­pily, I’m sur­rounded with like-minded peo­ple with sim­i­lar val­ues. What’s more, I’ve found (and I think Tony Hsieh would agree) that a company’s cul­ture nur­tures and helps good atti­tudes grow and get stronger. I see it all the time with the peo­ple I work with.

For exam­ple, I’d rather tape a real cus­tomer ser­vice rep with a great atti­tude than use an actor. Why? Because in this case, I think atti­tude trumps training.

Now, before all of SAG, AFTRA and non-union voice tal­ent that I’ve worked with over the years rains down their col­lec­tive wrath on me let me share that I’ve always had a pas­sion for the behind the scenes world of audio/visual pro­duc­tion. Early in my career I spent hours in Chicago record­ing stu­dios coax­ing the “per­fect read” from actors. It was my job to get some very tal­ented pro­fes­sion­als, who made sig­nif­i­cant bucks using their voices com­mer­cially, to sound like real cus­tomer ser­vice, tech sup­port or sales reps. The Pro’s always deliv­ered. Not only did they sound great but also actors like Tom Aman­des (long before he was Dr. Harold Abbott on "Ever­wood") could inter­pret a script with lit­tle input, could adjust the “read” on a dime and gen­er­ally make me feel like my direc­tion was bril­liant. (I espe­cially liked that part.)

We use a lot of recorded sam­ples in our train­ing. Exam­ples of “what not to say” often stim­u­late groans of recog­ni­tion and spark good dis­cus­sions. In our coach­ing pro­grams, man­agers prac­tice mon­i­tor­ing calls and deliv­er­ing feed­back. After each call we ask the man­agers what they thought of the call. Invari­ably after one par­tic­u­lar sam­ple call a man­ager will blurt out, “How do we clone her? I want her on our team.”

This reac­tion never ceases to make me beam because the voice tal­ent in this case isn’t a card car­ry­ing pro­fes­sional, she’s our client ser­vices man­ager — an Impact employee walk­ing the walk and show­ing off her great attitude.

With a back­ground in per­for­mance improve­ment and instruc­tional design, Mon­ica Postell works with Impact Learn­ing Sys­tems in design­ing and deploy­ing train­ing and devel­op­ment pro­grams that fos­ter real cus­tomer loyalty.
4 Attitude Makes a Wonderful Difference
Mon­ica Postell
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  • What are key attrib­utes of a desir­able cus­tomer ser­vice rep­re­sen­ta­tive which I can deter­mine at hire? — Quora

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