Working in customer service can be mentally exhausting. Customer Service expert Jeff Toister provides a number of tips and tricks to help you stay focused and sharp during your day. For example, it's important to take breaks after difficult calls to reset and to monitor your attitude throughout the day.
- Let's face it, serving customers over the phone all day long can be exhausting. This video will give you some techniques that can help you stay fresh and focused. Let's start by taking a look at why serving customers over the phone can be so tiring. One challenge is called emotional contagion. Other people's emotions can be contagious. We really can catch a bad mood from someone else. This can wear us down if we talk to angry customer after angry customer all day.
This makes it important to do a mini reset after a really difficult call. Take a deep breath. Get up and stretch or go get a cup of coffee, tea or water. Another challenge is emotional labor. This is the effort you put into putting on a display of a certain emotion. In customer service we're expected to be warm and friendly with our customers. It's easy to do if you're in a good mood, but it's much harder if you don't actually feel warm and friendly. Just like physical effort, emotional labor becomes increasingly difficult the more you use it.
So if you're having a bad day, you've got to find a way to get in a better mood. One way to do this is to keep a list of what I call attitude anchors. These are things that can help you feel better. I've created an attitude anchor worksheet that you can download and use to make your list. You'll notice there are two columns on the worksheet. The first column is labeled maintenance anchors. These are things you can do everyday to stay in a good mood. It might be eating a healthy diet, spending time with friends or family, or working on a hobby that you enjoy.
The second column is labeled repair anchors. These are things you can do to repair a bad mood. It might be taking a walk, listening to music, or having a conversation with a friend. Attitude anchors are personal so what works for me might not work for you. The key is identifying what keeps you in a good mood and making time to work on those things. The final challenge I'd like to share is called directed attention fatigue. Take a look at some of the typical symptoms, distractibility, irritability, impatience, indecisiveness and procrastination.
Directed attention fatigue comes from over-using the parts of our brain responsible for blocking out distraction and focusing our attention. Many people who serve customers over the phone are constantly doing this. Unfortunately, the only known solution is rest. That means taking your breaks throughout the day and using those breaks to recharge. It also means trying to get a good night's sleep so you're fully rested the next day. Overcoming these challenges isn't easy, but putting some effort into staying fresh and focused can really pay off.
You'll be able to serve your customers at an higher level and you'll feel better at the end of each day.
- Developing the perfect phone greeting
- Filling dead air
- Managing holds and transfers
- Expressing empathy
- De-escalating angry callers