I was speaking with the receptionist of a local radio station today, I won’t name the station. I had been playing phone tag with the founder and owner of the station, because he connected with me on farcebook a week or so ago, sent me a proposal by email, and was trying to reach me since yesterday by phone as a follow-up to his proposal.
This young lady was very nice on the telephone yesterday, so when I finally hooked up with this station owner dude today, I told him that his gal answering the station’s phone deserved a raise because she was so polite, kind and patient on the phone.
During my brief discussion with, let’s be frank and call him an Asshole, during our two or three-minute conversation I thanked him for his proposal, but explained that our organization was not ready to even consider developing a “radio” show at his station.
As I answered his question regarding time-frame, which I said six months (and a brief tag in there for ITAD), he interrupted me in mid-sentence saying, “I’ve got to go”, and actually hung up on me. Mr. Radio Station Owner, it wasn’t that you hurt my feelings, I just think it was a rude and unprofessional thing for your to do, which DID inspire me to write this post today, hahahahahaha.
My human reaction for a moment, was to call the station back just for the purpose of leaving him a polite voicemail telling him how rude he was. As I was speaking to the young lady (receptionist), and she was a gain very polite, she mentioned that she used to work for a large insurance company, traveling all over, training their Call Center Customer Service people. Ahha, that’s why she gave such good phone I complimented her again. She laughed. I briefly explained my quick conversation with the owner of the station and told her, “Naa, I really don’t have to leave him a voicemail, but the next time he walks by your desk, tell him you have a message for him from Tom Saxe”. She said sure. I said, “Give him this brief message, say quote, unquote, and give him both fingers”, she laughed.
This reminded me of so many times recently having to spend time with my old domain hosting service, I say old, because my experiences, plural, like 15 times, were the worst simply because they moved ALL of their Call Center activity to the Philippines. I then transferred all my website hosting services to a company whose Call Center was here in the Phoenix area.
Okay, I’m being a little long-winded here, so I will get straight to my point. Based on my many contacts with the new hosting service, (in Tempe) I decided that at some point I would write a post for my blog, and give everyone a few tips on not just what to do if you work in a call center, but tips for ANYONE who using a telephone to communicate, wither it’s business or personal.
Now, this is based on my recent experiences with the local web hosting service, of which I have had numerous calls to “fix” problems with my new service they are providing.
Most of these calls were good experiences, many were not so good. Not getting into detail, here are a few tips that were necessary to share with the various call center dudes and dudettes that I spoke with.
Lesson number 1, and the most important lesson. If you are receiving a call from a “customer”, regardless of the issue or reason for the customers contact with you, or the product or service your company is providing, LISTEN! I don’t care how long the customer is talking, trying to explain the reason for his or her call, DO NOT interrupt your customer. Wait until the customer has finished explaining the issue or problem.
You, as an employee of a call center have an obligation to LISTEN first. Now, if the “customer” does start to go off subject and talk about the wonderful time he spent for vacation in Pacoima last year, or he or she starts to breathe heavy and you suspect there is some masturbation going on (in that extreme case you obviously would accidentally disconnect the call), there is a polite way to get a word in to get the customer back on track.
Lesson number 2, if you are being paid by the hour to be a “Customer Service Representative”, even if you really have to take a shit, or you are anxious to take a cigarette break, don’t give what I call, the “Bum’s Rush” to try to end the call with the customer. The customer deserves as much time as needed.
Lesson number 2.1. Don’t give an excuse like, “Well, I have tons of calls waiting so I really have to go”….BULLSHIT, I say wait until the CUSTOMER is finished, and satisfied with the results of the conversation. So many times, I had to call back because the call center dude had not fully answered my questions or was just a total ass and should go back to flipping hamburgers.
In conclusion, I told the young lady at radio station XXXX today, that she was very special, very good at what she was doing, and no surprise to me when she mentioned her call center training background. I told her that I would hire her in a second.
Moral of this story? You can either satisfy, or piss off and lose a customer for your company. How you speak, how you listen, how you do your job, is a critical part of the company’s image to the world, and ultimately, it’s earnings or losses. The radio station? Nah, not interested in doing business with them now or ever.
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Strain: GrandpasBellyButtonLint, harvested October 23rd, 2017
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