April 1, 2021

Psychic Income- 7 Ways to Show Respect to Your Call Center Associates

Do you and your supervisors care about your associates on a personal level?  I’m not saying you are best friends and go out on the town, but do the reps know that you, as a manager, care about them?
Respect is something that today’s generation really takes to heart, and we need to be able to provide respect to make sure our culture is working at its peak.

This week, we talk about “Psychic Income”, what that is, and seven ways to show respect for your call center associates.

  • Showing Interest In Our Call Center Associates As People

Do you go out of your way to make your associates know you respect them? Do you show interest in your associates as people? Asking your associates about their home life, their kids, and their family is really powerful in terms of mutual trust. Start the day with casual morning meetings, one-on-ones, and show that you really care about them. As a boss, it is important to connect with your mid-level management as well. It cannot all be about work.

  • Coaching & Reprimanding in Private

Coaching or reprimanding someone for a mistake is best done privately. If you coach or reprimand someone publicly, or in front of their friends and coworkers, the immediate response will be defensiveness. They will lose respect for you as a person because you just embarrassed them in front of everyone. Always give critique in private, whether that be an IM or Video call or in person. If an entire group needs to be corrected, that’s fine, just never pick on individuals during that talk.

  • Celebrating in Public

On the flip, always congratulate publicly! This builds trust. Celebrate every single accomplishment, and pick out individuals if they are doing a great job. This way the whole group, or even the whole company, can feed off that positive vibe. No matter who it is, a job well done feels good for everyone.

  • Talking About Advancement

I like to do weekly analyses where we talk about goals with each rep individually. This is an appropriate place to talk about advancement with your associates. For example, Susie has been doing very well, and you tell her there are management trainee positions open. You tell her if she can get her hours up by just two hours a week, she can move up in the company. This both incentivizes her to get her attendance up in order to be promoted, but also is a way to avoid berating her for having a slightly low attendance. No one wants to be stuck on the phones forever.

If you have college kids working at your center, know what their majors are, their passions, and route them with skills that will be beneficial to both your organization and their future career plans.

  • Why & How to Keep Team Meetings Positive

One of the biggest mistakes supervisors make is having negative meetings. Not to say every meeting should be rainbows and butterflies, but there is a time and place for coaching and critique. This connects back to the idea of coaching in private. Do not individualize negativity, because it affects the group. Morning meetings and shift kick-offs should always be high-energy to boost morale.

  • Having Reps Talk Positively About Other Reps

I like to host incentives to get our reps to speak positively and publicly about Expivia. I will offer pizza parties and lunches if we can get 200 reps to post something positive about Expivia on Facebook or Glassdoor. You can do this individually as well. During group meetings have everyone mention something positive they noticed from another teammate. This is an awesome way to boost morale and the positive energy within specific groups. Our Slack channels and IM’ing have made it easier as well, some people are a bit uncomfortable giving compliments or talking about a coworker face-to-face. Being able to reread your compliments makes them stick a little better.

  • Keeping Management Office Hours

If you are a contact center manager with supervisors beneath you, or even if you are a supervisor, set aside 15-30 minutes a week and host office hours. Let your associates come to you freely during that time to talk. Sometimes it can turn into a complaint session, but it is important that you hear these complaints and struggles, help them, and let them know that you care that they succeed.

My dad always called it “psychic income”, which means additionally paying your employees in the respect and attention they deserve.

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Advice from a Call Center Geek is a weekly podcast with a focus on all things call center and contact center. We discuss topics such as call center operations, hiring, culture, technology, and training and have fun doing it! #callcenter #contactcenter #CX #custserv #callcentergeek

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