On hold, and doing a slow burn….


Nothing is more cold-hearted than being placed on hold and listening to music you do not like, or an infomercial about  services you are attempting to use – if someone would just pick up the phone.

How about the inconsiderate front desk person who wants to know why you are calling and a brief description of your needs before connecting you?  Even the top of the ladder manager should know that is not the way to encourage new business and keep present customers.

Seth Godin, “Seth is a writer, a speaker and an agent of change” and has a word directed to those top-level managers who allow impolite telephone greetings.  I love #1

Seth Godin, clicking on his head leads to more posts from Seth's blog.

Seth Godin, clicking on his head leads to more posts from Seth’s blog.

“Your call is very important to us

Rules for treating inbound customer calls with respect:

 Spend a lot more money on this. Hire more agents. Train them better. Treat them with respect and they’ll do the same to those they interact with. Have a bright red light flash on the CEO’s desk whenever anyone, anywhere, is on hold for more than 5 minutes. If it gets to seven, have the call automatically route to the mobile phone of the CEO’s spouse.

 1. Have a very smart and very motivated front line. “I’ll connect you directly to the person who can help you if you let me know what you need…” Don’t have these people pretend that they can help. It leads to long conversations and frustration.

 2. 80% of your inbound calls are about the same ten things. First, eliminate those problems in future products, packaging and policies. The best way to handle these calls is to eliminate them. Second, put clear, fun and complete answers to these questions online where they are easy to find. And third, hire talented voice actors to record engaging answers to each, and offer them as a first resort as a result of #1, above.

3. Change your on hold music to Bill Cosby and Woody Allen records.

 4. Whenever the wait is more than two minutes, offer a simple way to be called back, and then make sure it works.

 5. If you’re closed, tell us the hours you are open and the relevant websites. Make sure the information is accurate.

 Even famous companies get all of these wrong… Only one of the five steps is truly expensive, and yet all six are regularly ignored by companies that don’t care or act like they don’t.

 (NB it’s just fine to make it clear that a call is not important to you. I’ve never built a company around amazing phone support, precisely because it’s so difficult to keep the promise. As far as I’m concerned, it’s fine for some industries to not do the phone well. Just be clear that this is the case by routing people off the phone or at least not lying about it).”
Posted by Seth Godin on June 28, 2013

Way to go Seth…

 

4 responses to this post.

  1. This is so true.What needs to be done to get an acceptance by most? Could we look at the possibility of suitable change in the system configuration?

    Shakti

    Like

    Reply

    • Compassionate, consideration would be a good start to let your clients (who by the way, pay the salary of employees) know you appreciate them.

      I hate being placed on call nearly as much as voice mail messages and never receiving a call back,
      thanks for your visit and your comment.

      Like

      Reply

  2. absoluely love this!

    Like

    Reply

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