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2018? It’s here now? How did that happen so fast?


YEAR END Goal Setting – LAMA LESSONS in Money, Time, and Energy

All our training classes begin with “INTENTION” and a short definition is “Being Determined in Advance.” A question I get at all training classes is: “Judy, what is the difference between Goals and Intention?”

Thanks for asking because the response is very important, and it can change the way you think about goals. Since, the Universe always says YES…you better get those goals right! There is a Universal Law at work, and it’s just like gravity.  So, at the end of every year, we talk about year-end goals, New Year’s Resolutions, and Next Year’s Goals.  This will be quick to learn.  The most important thing about goals is that they are specific and measurable.  Intention is general and imaginative, creative and the vision from 40,000 feet.

Here is the “kicker.”  All goals need to be based on INTENTION.  There are no hidden meanings, no hidden agendas, and no fooling the FORCE.  Therefore, you need three things:

  1. Purpose for your INTENTION- WHY do you want what you want?  Don’t set a money goal unless you have an Intention in mind.  Example:  I want to make a $50,000 goal. (BOLDLY stated.)  What for?  AH YES…for College tuition.  It is my Intention to put my kids through college.
  2. Goal- Sell $50,000 worth of training programs to pay for college fund.  (Now we’re talking.)
  3. Discipline- Discipline yourself to follow the plan in two ways. Daily and Monthly, I will be determined in advance to create for myself a Production Goal and a Management Goal. I will work as if the Management Goal is the one I must make and that my life depends on it.  This is exciting! Determined in advance.
  4. Production Goal- Defined as what you need to do to meet the phone bills, the payroll and/or the advertising budget. This will be different for each business.
  5. Management Goal- Defined as the bigger goal; the one used to manage yourself.
  6. Plan or Strategy- If I wanted $50,000 in training courses, I would make a plan, a strategy, and a budget to play with that would get me $60,000 worth of training programs. (20% more than Production Goal.) These goals can be predictions based on facts that are already there. Last year, I made $35,000 and did XYZ; now this year I need to keep 90% of my clients from last year and obtain 10 new clients. So, what’s that plan for this?

Thinking BIG is hard for everyone.  We have been so brain washed into thinking sacrifice is good, or maybe someone told you that you’ll never make your goals.  Of course, we’ve heard so many limited thinking stories and rules that now we believe in them.   It is so simple, but it just isn’t easy to give up those old thoughts that now are beliefs. (Beliefs are often just thoughts you repeated for years.) It’s time to give up the limited thinking and just watch what happens…what have you got to lose?   Yes, it is 2018.

Quote: “At the moment of commitment, the world conspires to make it happen.” 

Set your Intention on the most important MAIN thing.  Then set a goal to match the needs of that intention.  Finally, begin a plan for the strategy to create the circumstances that allow it to happen.

How do you say, “Thank You” in LAMA?


Maybe you would like some ideas this year on words and ways to say them, that really acknowledge another person.  When I want to say something wonderful, I usually start blubbering like a baby because, I start to seriously think about what someone means to me instead of taking them for granted.  When I am coaching in a call center and the agent says, “Thank you for calling,” or “Thank you for being our customer,” I always want to thank the Agent for the good job and embellish it.  Most agents find me a little on the corny side, but the wonderful thing is, they GET IT!  If you are teaching Customer Manners, or Company Goals with Customer Affairs or Quality Care, it may be part of your responsibility to listen for how we express our thanks.  I will LAMATIZE a couple of Thanksgiving expressions for you when you are the Coach, the Manager, or the Trainer.  This will start you thinking about how to say “Thanks.”

  1. The Customer asked for something. The agent completed the job. Here is what you can say:
  2. L – This is what you heard…Agent did a nice job and thanked the customer for calling.
  3. A – Corey, you really helped that customer and you did it fast.
  4. M – When we teach etiquette we say the usual things, but you didn’t just say the usual things. You were kinder, you offered even more education if the customer needed it, and you probably made that customer feel good about doing business with us.
  5. A – How did you learn to put that extra caring into your calls?
  6. The Agent handled a call with panache even after the Customer became angry at having to wait so long for a real person…The customer had started with “ALL YOU PEOPLE…”
  7. L Agent was calm and collected even while working under pressure of an angry customer who was name calling and threatening.
  8. A – Jennie, I am just so proud of you. You did a fantastic job with that call from Mrs. Jones.
  9. M – You were helpful without being patronizing, I especially liked it when you said: “I am so sorry this happened to you, Mr. Jones, but you called the right place now and I will help you with this.” Thanks again for making it your business to represent our company with such empathy.
  10. A – Where did you get that way of expressing yourself?

Okay…That’s it for this month.  Please come to our WEBINAR on November 16th…All about Thanksgiving – Making a Difference with Gratefulness and Appreciation.  We Appreciate you. There are gifts and surprises for all who attend.  Happy Thanksgiving.

Quotas Never Work – Intention Does


Training in Contact Centers is all devoted to RESULTS based on Goals! HA! That’s funny…

To learn that words don’t teach is the hardest lesson that I know. The world’s management seems to think that the numbers they generate, and the words they use to express those numbers, work. Well, here is the bad news for them, but the good news for you. Words DO NOT TEACH…Only Experience, and Emotional Experience at that actually teaches.

Now, you understood that. So, how would the training department, the marketing department, the Supervisors, the Managers, the Coaches, and the Agents relate to that? I spent my life teaching agents to come from their experience and intention. It never fails to be successful because these words never rely on the STATS. I never have the Agents Set Goals. “First Intention Then Enlightenment.” I teach through experience of personal stories, relationships, and train the Agents to find the emotional need of the customer, the buyer, and even their own. This works because it’s the experience that teaches. When the Agent relates, they own it…they own it because it is theirs.

There is no substitute for Aliveness or the Experience of Agent Satisfaction. There is no substitute for Intention. What you call goals isn’t it! There is no substitute for The Experience of the Customer.

The Customer Experience is so big in all discussions today yet it appears that all the work is being done on the level of technology and not on the level of the HUMAN BEING EXPERIENCE. Doesn’t that strike you as peculiar?

Change the Believer not the belief.

That’s the game to play. Right MINDEDNESS is also big right now. This is the LEADING EDGE of thought. MOLECULES need to change in the training room to suit the new thinking! Not more money to the agent, even though that would be good; not better-quality call check forms with a Positive BENT…but that also would be important. Change the molecules in the Training Room and you will have fantastic results. So, the question is “How do you that?”

Change the Believer means – GO the OPPOSITE way

The customer is NOT the most important person interacting in the call center…THE COACH IS! The Coach has the responsibility for at least 10 agents. Get It? Got it? GOOD!

The training in quotas, goal setting, and results is not the way. Training on INTENTION is, and your agents know this to be true, even if they’ve never heard it before.

The Quality Department doesn’t need three-page forms…they need 6 questions:

  1. Was the Customer “happy and satisfied” with the tone, words, and recommendations?
  2. Was the Agent “energized to serve” the customer though out the call?
  3. What “acknowledgement” would the Agent like to receive?
  4. What “corrections” would the Agent like to make for the future?
  5. How will the Agent do that?
  6. When will the Agent have this done?

SO SIMPLE yet not so EASY

Teach your Agents to “THINK” and to “BE”.  Open their minds to the possibilities instead of the technology driven numbers. Diversity also means the different way of THINKING. Cognitive THINKING is needed. Deductive THINKING, too. WE really don’t want agents to do what we say. We want Agents to know what to do and say. We want them to THINK for themselves. They will grow through this.

Agents quit all too much and too fast. Agents are lonely at their jobs. Agents know how to text, but some don’t know how to relate. Intentional teachers are needed. Where are the teachers and trainers who will teach Agents how to Converse or how to communicate and how to find the emotional needs of their customers??? Find those trainers and take them in…
Aside: This reminds me of an old song by Loggins and Messina and hit record by Anne Murray. “Find the girl who holds the world in a paper cup, go on and drink it up…love her and she will bring you luck.” (Danny’s Song) Find that TRAINER! (MIC DROP!)

Attention all Trainers!  

Start training your Agents on INTENTION. Study how to do that! TEACH THAT and simply add it to your present curriculum! The RESULTS will be better than all the quotas in the world.  Results will be Satisfaction for Company, Customer, and Agents.

Attention all Coaches!

“Make Your Agents feel right and SMART to ‘self-correct.’ They won’t QUIT as often. It will also build their self-esteem.”
And Finally. . .

Attention all Supervisors and Managers!

Train your Supervisors, and Your Management in keeping their promise to “Create a safe-environment” for all who work with them. What a wonderful Call Center World you will CREATE INTENTIONALLY!

Judy McKee – The LAMA Training and The Positive Coach Approach (818)945-5141

 

What is all this talk of LAMA™


It is a Skills Training Course on Communication that works!  That’s all!
The L-A-M-A Technique™

When you know the difference between “What Works and What Doesn’t Work!” you can create a Contact Center Learning System that is FANTASTIC! REVOLUTIONARY! AND one that Cannot and Will Not fail.  It is based on the same principle of gravity, and you never doubt that do you?  Judy McKee started in 1979 generating so many appointments, to sell or list real estate, that she was made a manager, then a trainer for a large Real Estate Company.  She said. “What’s so hard about getting appointments?  I get them all the time.”  The Independent Agents would not do what she said. Lesson Number One in the LAMA Training.  PEOPLE WOULD RATHER BE RIGHT, THAN RICH.  When she got the job of training the new hires, they didn’t know any better.  They just wanted to sell real estate, so Judy asked them to put their manuals under the desk because the manual said, “How to hold an open house.”  Judy said, “Who cares if we hold houses open…we just want to sell them.”

This seemed like perfect logic to her and to the new hires. This is when the LAMA Training was born.  It was called the Statement/Question Technique until Discover Card took our training and penned the acronym LAMA. Judy McKee trademarked the name, and the rest is history, as they say.

The LAMA Technique™ is born to WIN!

Why won’t it ever fail? Because it is built on Principles like Integrity, Gravity, and the Law of Attraction.  And, the psychology of Human Beings and their reactions to surviving.  The program is built on the human need that everyone has to be RIGHT Or Certainly NEVER Wrong!!!  We call it IRDS.

  • Intention to produce a result by creating a safe environment and setting a goal
  • Relationship to the Customer by “Never Making the Customer EVER feel wrong or Stupid”
  • Discipline, or we say Self- Discipline is Simple but NOT easy to do. Practice LAMA!
  • Skill: The LAMA Technique™. Use it constantly during the call until the end and then just say “Goodbye.”

Many have tried to teach the LAMA™, even though we hold the patent and the IP.  Inevitably, they fail at it because they think that it is only the technique they are teaching. (They can’t help themselves, it works and they love it.)  The reason the LAMA™ works, is because it is based on the principles above.  When you use the technique to Control the Path of the Call, it’s never used to manipulate or force.

This means that, while speaking to the customer (and this requires practice, roleplaying, and coaching) every question, every statement, every explanation, every acknowledgement, and every rebuttal has to be spoken with the clear intent to give the Customer the Best Experience and engage that customer in the conversation, not just the close. We want people to be able to say the right thing. We want our agents to know what to say, and why not to just use the scripted words. We want our Agents to know how to talk, not just speak the words we give them. If we give them words they don’t like to say, we are asking them to be untrue to themselves. Is that what we want?

The key element of this program that contributes to the dramatic success of the users is The L-A-M-A Technique™.  This is a special skill that, once learned correctly, enables representatives to perform in an extraordinarily successful and professional way.  Trainers acting in a monitoring and coaching role can readily measure the effective usage of the technique, and determine which representatives need continued coaching or counseling to bring them up to peak performance standards.

McKee Consulting, LLC proposes to provide complete documentation designed to be used in the training course by your agents and staff.  This documentation will also be used by the McKee Consulting, LLC trainer in the process of training your staff.

Call me for an outline of the Training and You will see…it’s not like other programs. Why? Because it works!  No tricks, no manipulations, no urgency or cards up our sleeves, just SKILL Learned.   Skill Requires Practice.  Hence, the Coaching is required.  It’s just like Baseball.

October Quiz

~Judy

Words Don’t Teach – And All That Jazz!


Words are only symbols of something else.

OMG…I am not a team player…now what do I do?  Don’t I fit in? (NO…) Don’t I play well with others? (YES, I do!)  Should I just say… “I am a team player!” Will I be more accepted then?  Being a TEAM player is acknowledged by the best companies as The Way To Be.  Often you hear, or see, great presentations about the word TEAM and what those letters stand for.  Another one I’ve heard is “There is no I in T-E-A-M.”   This is a very old paradigm.  The word team teaches nothing…the Experience of Being on a team can teach you everything…I like to use the very ancient words from the HAGAKURI. “Learn one thing, learn a thousand.”

My favorite way to put a TEAM together would be to use the analogy of JAZZ.  Each single person is an I AM or I WILL kind of person.  A person who can hold his own, alone if necessary, yet allows others to play as well to the best of their ability.  If you watched and heard a Jazz quintet play together, you would hear each musician do his or her own “thing.” It becomes a thing of beauty, and it’s called JAZZ.  Each player can SOLO as well as join in the tune with accompaniment.  It’s a joy to  be in the presence of this type of TEAM.   The Piano man, the percussionist, the base, the horn, and the guitar – WOW!  Put them altogether and “THAT’s ALL THAT JAZZ!”  A team can be like this.  This will work.

I have never considered myself a TEAM player.  I play on many teams and I love to experience the joy of working with the team, but I absolutely and positively expect each and every other player on the TEAM to do their own very best.  When I expect this, I usually get it.  I never use the term supervision of the team. Children require supervision, not a TEAM of adults.

Team leadership requires a certain willingness to be on the leading edge of whatever you are doing.  The leading edge requires a certain type of energy, a very strong imagination, and the positive approach to the game you are playing.

So, what are the NEW RULES?  How do you set up a wonderful TEAM?  How many players can and will hold their own, be responsible for the job getting done, and when a mistake is made, vow to take ownership and correct it without fear of some retribution from above.  FEAR of any kind ruins a TEAM.  Yet, it seems we are driven by FEAR or the FEAR of not surviving.  Try setting up a team by setting yourself up first to lead it…it won’t hurt and you may learn something new about these words…WORDS TEACH NOTHING.  You get to practice and experience your job, and your life, all by yourself. If you can do these things, you will give up your survival, you will have no schemes to justify, and you will have more trust in yourself. Remember: “Anything you resist will persist, and you cannot give away to others what you do not have.”

So here is what I work on every day to be a better leader, teacher/trainer, and coach.

  • STOP working for 20 minutes and see if I can quiet my mind. The sun will come up tomorrow and gravity will still work, without me pulling it, the tide comes in. Try this…you can relax.
  • DECLARE “Everything I experience is right, and every word I think or say may be wrong.”
  • Acknowledge you can’t “fool the force” – That is law in the UNIVERSE.
  • Check your own speech (words) that justify your making yourself right. (That’s a big one)
  • Lastly, when things are NOT going your way…ask yourself this question: “Would I rather be right or happy?” Then, give it up, and choose HAPPY.  Let them be right…SO WHAT!

Team playing is so much fun when you acknowledge you are part of it and at the same time responsible for all of it. Team playing is a fantastic experience when you know that what you think matters.  When you can trust yourself to be a leader and a team player at the same time…you will know what this article really means.  WORDS DON’T TEACH.  Experience your life!  It’s worth it.  Then TEACH others what you learned through experience (NOT JUST WORDS) and they may take your part, your advice, or even play the same tune while they develop their own instrument, and play on.

Now that’s what you want isn’t it…? And THAT’S JAZZ!

Judy McKee


 

Digitize Those Defining Moments! LAMAtize the chats, texts, and twitters!

 


It’s an idea whose time has come

Life Lessons in the Call Center are very real.  Here is a quick story about how one company used their new Salesforce Program (NO I am not a Salesforce salesman) to save a very upset customer!  (I am always looking for defining moments on a phone call, email, or chat.)  THINK L-A-M-A, then call us.

Here is the story about how one call center discovered that a customer had contacted their company four different ways, in just one hour.  And Salesforce did all the work.  The CX manager was pinged with a customer issue, and when he put in the information, Salesforce created a list of all four contacts, and the text of those issues. (Could this happen to you?)  Here is what happened.

  1. The customer contacted the company by chat…and hung up after waiting.  Unsure of where the agent had gone.
  2. The customer tried chatting again – was still left on hold…hung up again!
  3. The customer sent an e-mail, and received a terse, yet accurate return response.
  4. The customer received a CX survey.  They proceeded to send it back, blasting the company for terrible service but a great product.

The Coach/CX Manager gave the original Chat Agent a pass…she was handling so many chats at once, and he thought the customer could have been a little more patient.  The Coach also gave the e-mail agent 100% for accurate information and a speedy response. Although the agent got good grades, the customer wasn’t happy.  Are you seeing the missing link?

The Survey comments were angry, and the customer could not understand why she was treated so badly when she was long-time customer of this brand and often purchases with her on-line account catalogue.

All of this could have been avoided in the very first CHATHow?  Wait for it…Here is the answer which can change that customer experience into a satisfactory one.

  • We call it L-A-M-A, you would call it templates.
  • We call it Training the agents to understand the Art of a Question
  • We call it digitize a response that includes the L-A-M-A

Here is how it would all work if the Chat agent knew how to L-A-M-A

  1. Chat comes in…Chat agent asks “How may I help you today?”
  2. Customer offers their needs
  3. Agent L-A-M-A-tizes and Digitizes the answer. (It could be a template as well.)
  4. The digital response ends on a question. This changes everything …(just be sure the question makes the customer right to answer it – don’t ask “How old are you?”).

Agent: “Thanks so much for chatting with me today.  I will look that up immediately and it may take me a couple of minutes.  I will be right back.  Do you mind waiting?”

Customer: “No, I can wait, I really like those jeans.”

  1. The customer is waiting by permission. The customer made this decision.
  2. The Agent ended her side of the conversation on a question asking for that permission. (So polite, so grateful, so customer centric – Call Center talk for CARING)
  3. The Customer waits patiently and receives the answer.
  4. The Chat Agent ends with, “So glad you chatted today…Would you like a coupon for your next purchase?” Customer says “YES!”
  5. Agent sends a link to the coupon and a final “Thank You,” and branding the call.
  6. Now, it’s perfectly fine that there is no question, because the Agent doesn’t want any more response. (You can do the same thing with e-mails)

Remember “The person who asks the questions, is the person who is controlling the path of the call, or the chat session.”  The e-mail and chat agents, don’t know this simple rule.  They never learned the L-A-M-A Technique, so they cannot be blamed or graded.  The fault lies in the lack of communication or soft skilled training course. (“The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars. But in ourselves, that we are underlings.” That’s Shakespeare, a little impressed…right?)

The L-A-M-A goes DIGITAL

With a L-A-M-A-tized/DIGITIZED first Chat session, there is only one contact. One and done! (Thanks to L-A-M-A) The customer does not need to chat twice.  This saves time in the chat area.  The customer does not e-mail anyone, or sends in a negative survey.

Great story about defining moments Judy . (Judy talks in third person) Could you please SUM IT UP?

*  The Coach (JUDY) heard the absence of a question which caused the customer to hang up. (What can I tell you…it’s what I do!)

*  The SALESFORCE program reported all the negative remarks from the same customer in just one hour, all in the same place, making it easy on the CX manager to get to the bottom of it. (Is that what you meant by sum it up?)

*  The Customer received a very nice note from the CX, thanking the customer, and got another coupon. (WHO HOO! The CSAT scores go up again.)

*  Judy or Sally received kudos from the company for teaching them the LAMA.

* The Company saved a CUSTOMER in the end. (We want them for LIFE, don’t we?)

* The Customer received both an acknowledgement and discounts.

* The Future Agents of Chats, Phone, and Email room will all be trained in the L-A-M-A Technique and the ART of the QUESTION.

* Salesforce made the digital part all possible and the L-A-M-A TECHNIQUE made all the communications work better.

The END….All is well and it all happened because of a Defining Moment when one person forgot to ask a question.  This will never happen again.  WIN WIN WIN WIN WIN… (How many wins in that?)

I would rather ZIG when everyone ZAGS than anything else.

I love that the Agents get to WIN too!!!

Judy

Mystical? Magical? Vicious? 


Are you caught in a Vicious Cycle that damages your self-esteem or the self-esteem of your Agents? The cycle can look like this.

This is a Vicious Cycle of Negativity

I hear something wrong on a call, I get Quality to Agree it is bad.  I send out a graded form that tells the Agent what is wrong with the way she handled an issue or a person.  I set up a feedback session disguised as a “coaching” session.  In the meeting, I make sure the Agent sees the error of her ways.  I tell her how to do it right, or how we did it in my day.  I tell the Agent to fix this for their next evaluation. I hope they are repentant and willing to take the constructive criticism well and mend their ways. I watch and listen for improvement and wonder why I don’t hear or see much improvement. I am frustrated. (BTW so is the Agent and now lacking self-esteem)

This is a Vicious Cycle of Positivity

I hear the Agent make an error on a call. He said something that doesn’t please the Customer.  I ‘think’ that Agent needs more confidence and maybe a lesson on Handling the Upset Customers. I am the COACH and I am responsible to help the Agent improve. AND, to give him acknowledgment and show my “confidence in him.”  I set up a time to meet with the Agent for a coaching session. We listen to the recorded call.  I mention that I thought the customer was not happy with the way she was handled or the matter handled.  I ask the Agent if he felt the same.  Aha! We agree.  Okay, Perfect.  Now I ask the Agent, “What can you do in the future to make a situation like this a better experience for the customer?”  I tell the Agent, “I know you can come up with some good ideas and use them in the future.” (Building the Self-Esteem of the Agent) I tell the Agent he is doing a great job and I would like him to come up with some ideas for a way to handle this, and we can agree on it.

Why should you as the manager, supervisor, or coach build the self-esteem with Positive Coaching? If you build self-esteem instead of correcting, you’ll have a Vicious Cycle of Positivity:

  • Higher Agent Retention
  • Agent Pride in themselves and the company
  • Better Performance and
  • A Much Better Customer Experience

It doesn’t take a Miracle, and it isn’t Magic or even Mystical, but it is Vicious!  The fact that we don’t quite understand how to build our own self-esteem and that of our Agents.    What’s the Quickest way to Build the Self-Esteem of your Agents?  Okay WAIT FOR IT. . .

Tell your Agents how wonderful they are!  Find something good about a call.  Give them not only a compliment, but a specific opinion or a measure of something good they did.   People are so micro-managed and they have the computer listening in on their every word.  Imagine what it would be like to hear nothing but good stuff all day long.  Can you imagine that?  Is it mystical to say that…what you think is what you get?  What you think – GOES! Is it Magical when you take time to find something wonderful about your Agent, and then tell them? Is it a Miracle when they SMILE at you and feel proud of their work? If you spend at least one day every week, acknowledging your AGENTS, Miracles will Happen! The best part…the Vicious Cycle of Negativity will be completely obliterated! TA! DA!

*Share your stories with us.  We love to hear how our tips and coaching helps you and your company!

FEEDBACK SUCKS!

The biggest cause of turnover in the contact center industry is Negative FEEDBACK and everybody still does it!  Why ? ? ?


Usually I do not use words like “sucks” but I want your attention on my intention. Thank you for opening this blog. I want to help you be able to help the agents enjoy their jobs more.  I want companies to retain their agents and have much less turnover, and of course, I want everyone to use The Positive Coach Approach.

Feedback simply doesn’t work when it is negative.  Agents don’t ever quit their job. They quit their supervisor, their manager, their coach, or their quality call checker.

It seems people would rather be RIGHT, than happy.

Supervisors are racking their brains for a new formula, a new way to correct, a different way to “hold people accountable.”  What they really want are results that work for everyone; the Customer, the Company, and the Agent.  When applying feedback or monitoring using computer based bots, or when supervisors threaten with bad grades or poor quality assessments, they have forgotten that the agent is one of the three components to the equation.  I do know that they mean well…

This type of simplicity is very difficult for complicated minds. The technical methods are holding us hostage.

What do we want?

  • A happy atmosphere where people thrive and create a safe environment for the customers, and are wide open for the opportunity to sell something of value to the customer. This way everyone thrives; the Company, the Customer, and the Agent.
  • A happy environment with LESS TURNOVER
  • A new way to feel good about coaching

The Contact Centers are filled with good people who want to do a good job.  The people you hire come on with great anticipation, and they want to do it right.

And, just as soon as they get trained and start to work, the “feedback” starts. 

Oh, yes, it’s kind at first…and then the real compliance and quality checks start to rear their ugly heads.  Words like “I want to hold people accountable.” And, “Constructive criticism is good for them.” Or even, “I have told that agent a million times to do it my way, and he/she still insists on doing it the wrong way!”

It’s okay to train and to coach, but if you call coaching “feedback” then your agents may feel criticized, and it will not be a good experience for them. Remember that you want happy agents, doing a great job for the customer and the company.

You only have to give up one thing…BEING RIGHT!                     Then the agents will do a GREAT JOB!

You don’t really have to be right.  All you can do is, trust that you hired adults who can self-correct, if you show them how.

The price you pay to be right goes across all lines, and is at every level. (Take this part home.)  This price is too high.  The agents QUIT!  The cost of turnover in the USA, is in the billions. Still, companies try every kind of scheme, every type of new way to hear what the agents are saying using robotics and artificial intelligence.  It is artificial…it is artificial!  It is unkind, and it is simulated intelligence. It’s not REAL.

ARTIFICIAL: Made in imitation, produced by humans, affected, or feigned

INTELLIGENCE: A capacity for reasoning or understanding, knowledge of an event or circumstance received or imparted, a gathering or distribution of secret information

Kindness: Gentle, tender and good, showing or based on gentleness or consideration

COACH: A person who instructs or trains and supports an athlete or performer

Nowhere in the dictionary does it say, criticizes, manipulates, schemes, grades, demeans, or makes the ‘coachee’ feel wrong or stupid. (I know you don’t mean it but you have been trained.)

Let’s consider a NEW way, listen to a new voice, the voice of “What Works” and not the voice of what’s right or wrong.

Here is some advice from this old coach.  I am not old school, I only have old values.  I am not uncool, I am very cool, I have sunglasses to prove it.  I am not righteous, I am kind.

Believe people are phenomenal when given the chance to show their true colors

  • Clarity is POWER

o   Put your attention on your intention

  • notice whenever you are bitter, anxious, righteous, parental, and right…usually you have a form in your hand

o   Put your attention on your intention to support in a kind way

  • Ask your agents to make the call great and to self-correct if needed
  • Ask them how they will do that and what they will fix
  • Ask them when they will have it done
  • First comes AWARENESS, then Enlightenment

o   Pay attention to your own mind and notice when you don’t think they can do it without your help and criticism

o   STOP this thinking immediately

o   Open the doors to a coaching experience instead of a FEEDBACK one

  • Pat yourself on the back for giving up the following:

o   Being parental – you just give it up, it doesn’t work anyway

o   Being manipulative – “Wouldn’t it be better if you just did what I say?”

o   Being forgetful about how KIND you really are and how much you want the agent to succeed and be happy to stay in their job

FEEDBACK doesn’t work, kindness and believing in your agent’s capability to SELF correct works.  These are human principles and they will never fail. They cannot fail, they are as real as gravity.

It’s always your choice.  Choose the Positive Coach Approach, even if you have to admit at first…it’s new to you.  Tell your agents and they will get it!  They are so smart and will STAY at their JOB much longer if they like IT and YOU.

~Judy McKee

Get Clicking
Creating a team that clicks requires more than a data dump


     When it comes to creating a successful training session, much of the weight centers on the person delivering the information.  Delivering information in an entertaining way, that won’t put attendees to sleep, is only one measurement of success.  The media used, the data presented, and, of course, the enthusiasm of the trainer all impact what agents retain and, ultimately, employ on the call center floor.  However, no matter how skillfully a trainer delivers information, if they can’t inspire and motivate attendees, their efforts are wasted
     Training programs must be designed to deliver solid, useful materials and skills that trainees can readily use to enhance their performance.  An element of training that is often neglected is the addition of inspiration.  Dispersing information without adding ways to motivate and inspire reps ends in lackluster performances.  As trainers or call center managers, it is important to impart these contagious emotions to the entire call center team.  Doing so creates a team that “clicks.”  Neglecting to do so creates a team of agents who simply go through the motions.
What
do we mean when we say click?  It can mean different things to different people.  For instance, in the book, “Clicking,” Faith Popcorn and Lys Marigold say, “The very word [clicking], the very sound of fingers snapping – wakes people up, shakes people up.  A light goes on, the puzzle pieces tumble into place and suddenly you’re aware and alert to the chance for a brave new future.”
The dictionary defines click as to fit together, to become suddenly clear or intelligible.  The colloquial definition is to succeed or make a hit.  This definition could be compared to when, former Boston Celtics player, Robert Parish recalled the days he and teammate Larry Bird “played absolutely effortlessly and clicked on the court.”
Computer users might associate clicking to power.  Whether single or double clicks, a simple motion sends commands, moves icons, creates a link to the Internet, or brings an image flaring to life.  Click again, and it’s in the trash – Gone Forever!
As
 a final definition, some have described their personal clicking experience as a thunderbolt, a surge.  There’s a wonderful seismic word, tsunami, meaning a gigantic ocean wave caused by an earthquake or volcano.  That’s a terrific way of capturing the feeling of a real click – a powerful wave that’s capable of changing the world or an individual.
How does clicking apply to the world of call centers?  When a trainer and a group of agents click, agents grasp and understand the concepts that have been delivered.  One could say, when something clicks, a light goes on in the trainees’ head that says, “Aha!  I get it.”  But that isn’t where the concept of clicking ends.  Clicking continues on the call center floor as the elements learned are put to use.
To get agents clicking, it is usually best to end the training session with an inspirational story.  Inspiration has the unique ability to breed self-motivation.  Presenting a brief story after information has been delivered, will give the agent the ability to mix hard facts just learned, with individual emotions that together, will heighten their performance.
Trainees want life lessons as well as work lessons.  Trainers will often collect stories describing the success of individuals who persisted and achieved lofty goals despite hardships, setbacks, lack of talent, or physical attributes.  Stories can be readily found in biographies of scientists, athletes, inventors, adventurers, or campaigners for human rights.  Relating to agents how others have overcome their challenges, inspires them to look at their situation in a new light.  This thought-provoking exercise often brings a renewed sense of enthusiasm as well as a starting point for new ideas, solutions, or processes.
A trainer or call center manager might use a personal, on-the-job experience.  Not only does this technique bring the trainer to the agent’s level, it also addresses similar challenges.  Relating a personal experience along with the final, positive result gives trainees insight into their own tasks.  Learning from tried-and-true examples of others, gives trainees a head start, and helps them avoid making the same mistakes.
There is an old Samurai adage in the Hagakure that says: “The way is in the training.”  This means there is only one type of training, and that is the training everyone must conduct for him or herself.  Teachers and trainers have a great purpose in life.  But before they can be effective, they must first train themselves.  Staying mentally sharp requires continuous training and finding new ways to overcome hurdles.
As a trainer, if you’re able to impart to trainees a vision, motivation, enthusiasm, and the tools and information needed to support them in their jobs, then everything will click into place.  Don’t be surprised if the trainees eventually outshine the trainer.

Three Steps to Certification in The Positive Coach Approach


In every Contact Center in the World, there is a “Coach who has a tremendous responsibility to improve the skills of their coachees.”  Brain Training, Consciousness Movements, and Behavioral Styles all help to support better communication. Until the Coach Can Create a “Safe Environment” and give the Agent a chance to Self-Correct…all you have the same old thing.

There are THREE STEPS to Becoming Certified in a whole new methodology.  And these steps never fail!

Step 1: Discover Where You Are Now.  Check your results over the last year. Ask your Agents how they like the coaching and if they feel they are getting what they need.  Ask your Customer, “Do you enjoy talking to our Agents?”  And ask the Coaches if they passionate and happy to be coaching.  (Okay, I know that’s a lot for one step!)

Step 2: Admit you have a list a mile long of why any new program won’t work.  In fact,  write down all the reasons you can’t afford it, don’t have the time for it and think it’s just a new “thing” that will go away if you just ignore it.  You can never actually “get” your intention when it opposes anything else, so it’s best to get all those doubts and fears out there…look them over and simply decide.  So what if I thought that? Really, the TRUTH will set you FREE!

Step 3: Call the Authors of the Positive Coach Approach and say: “What is so different about your program, and what evidence do you have that it works every time?”   Now that’s a great start and we will take it from there.  See? It’s EASY as 1 -2 -3 – Remember We’ve GOT THIS!  AND We will GIVE IT TO YOU.