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Executive Interview : Must Ask Questions for the contact center industry - Interview With Juhani Kaariainen
What is your number 1 priority for your center in the short term (next 3 months) and why is it critical?
Information calibration between Clients and Contact Centers. Critical is a strong word. Please take this as a critical-light-thought. Fast changing world.
In your opinion, what is more important to you when managing your center? Net Promoter Scores?, Customer Effort?, First Call Resolution? Employee Engagement?
Management is not my path today. I believe that satisfied customers rule the world in the end. Both customers and clients are realists, the Bell Curve is there. It's up to us to explain solutions correctly. Academic-surgery or Layman-talk, no matter what.
How have you adapted to meet changing channels like Twitter, Facebook, Live chat, etc. and what challenges has this posed in the way you have run your center in the past?
Early hungry bird can't find the worm. Start with "Poster-level" and let moderate organic growth lead the process.
How do you structure your team to make sure the customer reaches the most appropriate employee to answer the question at hand?
TM-Mentor-Agent trio works fine. Just keep in mind to arrange relevant education to all. Accept no status-outsiders.
In your opinion, what technology has had the greatest positive impact on your customer satisfaction results? - please explain
Old fashioned dialogue when customer gets an aha-experience. Walk-throughs on web-sites are yes still needed and creates trust and gives to actual customer feeling that s/he has learned something today. Change frustration to knowledge.
Away from reality for a moment - Assume you have unlimited budgets and could change 3 things in your center, what would you change and why?
1) Work rotation gives holistic view. Quality should be a kind of On-Off unit i.e. "kill your darling" regularly.
2)Off time moves to a third party composed from floor walkers and fresh university guys. Then back to On-staff, hopefully same folks.
3) Flexi-time gives puts energy where it's needed.
What do you see as the 3 key 'hot topics' in the industry today and what are you doing as a center to address these?
Info-calibration - Openness - and Communication Measurements are hot. Mouth to mouth works relatively fine at the moment i.e. organic growth rules.
From a Human Resource 'HR' perspective, what initiatives do you rate as the most successful when it comes to retaining talent in your center?
Pick genuine internal communication talents with moderate speed career plans. People learn what's needed if you can deliver individually.
What are some of the common mistakes you see or hear others doing in this industry - mistakes etc. that we can all learn from?
Remove fast and big dollar signs from entrepreneur's eyes. Win-win situation exists but don't count just heads and money. Give the process time.
In your opinion, is the customer service you personally receive in your country getting better? getting worse? or staying the same compared to say a year ago?
Status Quo, no change.
Artificial agents - will they kill or support the contact center industry?
Seems that folks have good relaxed attitude. Machines are machines and easy to forgive their errors.
Share 3 ways to have fun in your contact center - elaborate with details where you can
1) How-are-you-plus works fine as usual
3) AW and hobby talk
What's the best way to schedule staff? explain your answer
Pro-active dialogue as always. Agreement rules.
Gamification - how does it affect the contact center performance?
More and more fast keyboard users, good for AHT.
How to reward your best staff - what do you do that makes them more loyal and perform better?
Do you believe the future leaders of this industry are the people at the front line, or others coming in from other industry sectors or parts of the company and why?
Changes in the sport-world will deliver us the greatest leaders in the future. They have energy, psychology and right spirit.
Do you believe in the saying 'Happy Staff = Happy Customers' and why?
Happiness can smooth daily frustration-moments. Wrongly oriented happy staff just makes things worse.
Outsourcing your contact center to a 3rd party - good or bad and why?
No matter who runs the CC if it's managed right.
ContactCenterWorld.com is the Global Association for Contact Center and Customer Engagement Best Practices and is the largest networking group for contact center industry professionals with over 145,000 professional members. Founded in 1999, ContactCenterWorld.com helps members improve service, performance, reduce costs, enhance sales and employee engagement.
About the Top Ranking Performer Awards
The annual Top Ranking Performer Awards was established in 2006 and is regarded by some as the Olympics of the contact center world as companies from all around the world compete for these prestigious awards and recognition. The 2016 awards are open already – details at www.ContactCenterWorld.com/worldawards
About the 2016 Contact Center Masterclass Best Practice Conferences
The annual Top Ranking Performer Conference was co-established in 2006 to run alongside the Top Ranking Performer Awards and is the most recommended industry conference in the contact center World. Delegates from all over the world attend and hear best practices shared by those who run centers. 4 events are run annually – one in Asia Pacific, one in Europe and 2 in North America – details at www.ContactCenterWorld.com/conferences
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