Impact Learning Systems

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Call Center Training: Fun Games to Motivate the Call Center Team, Part 1 Jodi Beuder

Call Center Training GameKeep­ing cus­tomer ser­vice and sales rep­re­sen­ta­tives moti­vated, inspired and excited about their job can be a tough task. So what can call cen­ter train­ers, coaches, and man­agers do to keep employ­ees ener­gized and loyal? The fol­low­ing is an excerpt from McGraw-Hill’s The Big Book of Cus­tomer Ser­vice Games, writ­ten by Impact Learn­ing Sys­tems exec­u­tives Peggy Car­law and Vasudha Dem­ing. Call cen­ter train­ing can be fun, while still obtain­ing pos­i­tive results from call cen­ter rep­re­sen­ta­tives.

Call Cen­ter Train­ing Game: “Are You Alive?”

  • Objec­tive: Call cen­ter rep­re­sen­ta­tives prac­tice using tran­si­tions to avoid long, awk­ward peri­ods of silence when talk­ing to cus­tomers on the phone. This game is ideal for any­one who has fre­quent or long pauses dur­ing trans­ac­tions with customers.
  • Time needed: 10–15 minutes
  • What the coach needs: A small, light ball, pil­low or stuffed ani­mal. A copy of the fol­low­ing printed on com­pany stationery:
    • Transitions:“One moment please.”There’s noth­ing wrong with this phrase, but it sure doesn’t com­mu­ni­cate much to the cus­tomer – only that he or she needs to wait. We know you can do bet­ter than that.What are some alter­na­tive state­ments you can use to com­mu­ni­cate with cus­tomers when you’re han­dling their requests?Examples: Mrs. Jones, it will take a minute or two to find that infor­ma­tion in my files.

      Write down your exam­ples here:

1.___________________________________________________________________________________

2.___________________________________________________________________________________

3.___________________________________________________________________________________

4.___________________________________________________________________________________

  • What to do now: Divide par­tic­i­pants into pairs and give each pair a copy of the hand­out. Tell them the pur­pose of this activ­ity is to prac­tice using tran­si­tions to avoid “dead air” when talk­ing to cus­tomers either on the phone or in per­son. Allow them five min­utes to com­plete the handout.
  • After five min­utes, have all par­tic­i­pants stand in a cir­cle a few feet from one another. Tell them to toss the ball around; who­ever catches the ball has to use a tran­si­tion state­ment and then toss the ball to some­one else.

Post-Game Dis­cus­sion:

Q: Why is it impor­tant for call cen­ter rep­re­sen­ta­tives to com­mu­ni­cate with cus­tomers rather than allow long peri­ods of silence?
A: Cus­tomers don’t always know what you’re doing. By com­mu­ni­cat­ing with them as you process their requests, you reas­sure them that you haven’t for­got­ten about them, and you keep them informed about the process. Cus­tomers love to be “in the loop.”

Q: When do call cen­ter cus­tomer rep­re­sen­ta­tives need to use tran­si­tions in cus­tomer ser­vice inter­ac­tions?
A: Answers vary.

Q: If a call cen­ter employee is talk­ing to a cus­tomer on the phone, when should they be placed on hold, and when should tran­si­tions be used while keep­ing the cus­tomer on the line?
A: Stan­dard prac­tice is to put a cus­tomer on hold if you’re going to take more than one minute to find the infor­ma­tion or process the request. Remem­ber to always ask the customer’s per­mis­sion before using the hold button!

Stay Tuned: More Games to Come!!

For more games, check back to this site from time to time and type “games” in our site search engine. Active call cen­ter train­ers and man­agers main­tain a much more respon­sive team–one that is more will­ing to par­tic­i­pate in achiev­ing goals and fol­low­ing pro­ce­dures to ensure a suc­cess­ful work day. Includ­ing games in your ongo­ing train­ing activ­i­ties pro­vides a fun way for your team to prac­tice skills that are crit­i­cal to their success.

Jodi Beuder, Cus­tomer Expe­ri­ence Advo­cate at Impact Learn­ing Sys­tems, believes cus­tomer ser­vice exists not just out­side the com­pany, but inside, too.. “Hav­ing excel­lent cus­tomer ser­vice skills and knowl­edge are para­mount to cre­at­ing strong work­ing rela­tion­ships, whether you are in an office or out in the field.” With over 17 years in Mar­ket­ing Exec­u­tive roles, Jodi has ded­i­cated her career to assist­ing com­pa­nies grow their brand pres­ence and sales, and most impor­tantly, their cus­tomer reten­tion and satisfaction.
Jodi Beuder
View all posts by Jodi Beuder
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