No More Agents On Islands: 5 Ways Customer Service Enablement Unites Frontline Agents

Wondering how to build a customer service team remotely? You are so not alone, my friend!

I’m going to preface this post by saying that I’ve never written a blog post before. But, I’ve read several articles about how quarantine is a great time to try something new, so here we go! 

On an island?

Right now, working from home, closing many public places, and socially distancing ourselves has limited our amount of social interaction. Most of us aren’t talking to others as frequently as we once did, and I know I’m not alone when I say that some days working from home feels like working on an island.

One day last week, the only call I had during my entire workday was with a really wonderful customer support agent who helped me over my lunch break obtain a return label for one of my (many) online quarantine purchases. The opportunity customer support teams have right now to be the bright spot in someone’s day completely hit me. A support agent may be the only human conversation someone has in a day that’s not with someone in their household.

With so many new guidelines and changes to the work environments, a ton of teams are trying to figure out how to build a customer service team that’s responsive, empathetic, effective, and efficient, whether they’re still remote or all back together. 

The best of the best

I was thinking back to some of the best customer service examples I’ve experienced, and what might have been included in the customer service training manual for those awesome agents who helped me. I’ve learned a lot in my previous work experience and even more from my customers, and it seems like in order to provide effective customer service enablement, a few things are essential to the training program: 

1) Remarkable customer service skills onboarding and ongoing training

Customer service skills are woven into the curriculum whenever possible. Not only the soft skills, but the unspoken things like anticipating someone’s next question, and being efficient with your work to solve the problem quickly. If you’re interested in hiring someone to help do this or simply learning more about customer service enablement in general, click that link back there—we’ve got a few great resources for you!

2) Tons of examples of good customer service situations 

When these great examples and best practices are shared with the team so they know exactly what they’re striving for, in all types of customer service channels that are offered, everyone wins. Agents win, customers win, the company as a whole win. One of the best ways to make best practices the norm is with an LMS that gives agents easy access to tons of practice scenarios and anecdotal stories of what to do in certain situations.

3) Customer service tips 

Sharing customer service tips amongst team members to build the camaraderie is so important to cultivating a happy working environment. When top performers can share what’s working and highlight their successes for the benefit of others (not for themselves, of course), CSAT and NPS will inevitably rise.

4) Practice

If opportunities to practice are plentiful, team members don’t feel like they’re working “on the spot” or unprepared. Customer service training exercises can be synchronous in real-time with peers, or virtual, but should definitely not be overlooked!

5) Ongoing support

Ongoing support from management, QA team members, team leads, mentors, trainers, coaches, and more will help ensure that everyone’s maintaining the skills and learning they need to succeed.

That’s all I’ve got for now! Did I miss anything? Did you learn something? I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to reach out to me at lucy.svenstrup@lessonly.com, and we can talk about all things CSE and training.

 

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The divine middle
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