Building a Cohesive Virtual Team

Information and communications technologies have created organizations that span geography and time. Multi-site environments, cross-functional teams, and extended-hour or 24/7 operations are common contact center examples. If you are a manager or director, you may have the responsibility of getting results from those who work in different locations, who don’t report to you, or who don’t work the same hours. …

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Customer Access Strategy as Playbook

Does a customer access strategy sound like something that would be nice to have? Actually, it’s vital. Just ask anyone who’s part of the University of California’s Retirement Administration Service Center (UC RASC). The University of California is the world’s leading public research university system, with ten campuses, five medical centers, three national labs and a network of researchers and …

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Customer Service Strategy: Avoid Common Pitfalls

Herb Kelleher, co-founder and former CEO of Southwest Airlines, once said, “We have a strategic plan. It’s called doing things.” He makes a great point. Developing strategies shouldn’t be an overly academic or formal exercise, with the result being a plan that’s really not put to use. Avoid these five common pitfalls, discussed in my LinkedIn Learning Course “Customer Service …

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Employee Engagement: A Key Metric in All Service Environments

Employee engagement should be a key metric in all service environments. Research shows that employee engagement influences – even drives – customer satisfaction and loyalty. Retention, productivity, and quality are all strongly and positively correlated with employee engagement. There is a powerful connection between employee engagement and business results. In a recent LinkedIn Learning course “Service Metrics for Customer Service,” …

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Hands-on Leadership

One of the keys to high levels of employee engagement in contact centers – and the strong performance that follows – is hands-on involvement from the top. For example: Among other endeavors, Dan Gilbert is the founder and chairman of Quicken Loans, the giant Detroit-based mortgage lender. Gilbert speaks often of Quicken’s core values, saying that they “drive every decision, …

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The Edge of Service: Principles of Effective Budgeting

It’s that time of the year, and as you head into budgets and budget presentations, I encourage you to make them as complete as they need to be — but as brief and to the point as possible. In a recent issue of The Edge of Service®, I include an excerpt from one of the LinkedIn Learning Courses that I’ve …

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When Building Your Brand, Be Yourself

In a recent issue of The Edge of Service®, I relay my experience meeting actor and author Henry Winkler at a recent ICMI Conference. Winkler reminded me of advice that my mother used to give me, especially when facing awkward or difficult challenges—”just be yourself.” It was sound advice then, and it still is now. And I believe it’s good …

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Contact Center Management on Fast Forward – Fourth Edition Now Available

It’s hard to believe that Contact Center Management on Fast Forward is in its fourth edition. It is a testimony to the strategic importance of contact centers to organizations of virtually any type. It has been a privilege to be a part of an industry that is dedicated to connecting with customers and helping organizations succeed. If you’ve read any …

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The Power of Employee Engagement

The impact of employee engagement is incredible. In fact, engaged employees are four times more likely than non-engaged employees to go beyond what’s expected of them according to the Temkin Group, a US firm focused on customer experience. Other studies show that quality improves, customer loyalty goes up, and employee turnover goes down. Learn more about the power of employee …

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Article on Customer Service Trends

Sam Del Rowe recently wrote an article for www.destinationcrm.com titled “The Top Customer Service Trends: Building Better Service Beyond Voice.” In the article, Mike de la Cruz of Directly and I provide insight into artificial intelligence (AI), omnichannel strategies, and agent involvement in the future. If these are issues on your mind for the future of your customer service center, …

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