Adonis Diaries

Archive for June 8th, 2018

Seth Godin posted “Your call is very important to us”

Rules for treating inbound customer calls with respect:

0. 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 7 min, 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 10 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 a first resort as a result of #1, above.

3. Change your onhold 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).

Comments and Notes posted on FB and Twitter in Arabic/Lebanese slang. Part 8

Note: These are notes and comments in Lebanese dialect written in Latin characters and with numbers (2,3, 5, 7,8) representing vocals and consonants Not available in Latin or Saxon languages.

Egypt President Sisi nakirat: Gaza hospitals are closing for lack of oil.

A7yaam kalimaati taka3ou 3ala 7itaan. Mo3zam al wakt tadkhol al 3akel

Nisbiyyeh aw shi tani, taalama al mourrasha7 lazem ye koun sammad $100,000, al natijat ta tama7war 7awl “tabakat 7akimat” min zamaan

Mazbout Na3eem Kassem baddo ye 7awel Loubnan ila dawleh Islamiyyat? Khemmana Hezbollah bado dawlet moush ta2ifiyyeh?

Intakassat bayn Saad wa waziraho Al Jarra7: Saudi Kingdom badha tsakker kaman Ogero bi Loubnan 

Alfo lejnat lel nazar fi ma3ayeer moukata3at Israel, kabel ma al siyassiyeen yedlo bi mawakefhom
Nifayaat 3ala shate2 Sami ejet min nifayaat Beit Chabab, Cornet al Hamra wa Mazra3at Yachou3. Hal baladiyyat bit kebb nifayatouha bi majra Nahr al Kalb wa al shetteh al ghazeer bit jamme3a bil nahr

2al shou? ellak 7a2 tetfarraj. ka2anno msharda2 etfarraj 3ala le3ba al mou3aa2

Moush msharda2 erja3 3an kareeb ila Garderie. Hal mara me3tebrat enno al Club her private playing ground. wa hiya al mo3alimat

Kaalat enno ya7ok li bass etfarraj. 3ala shou? 3ala le3b ma2zoum?

Power to decide is an either/or proposition.

Two groups don’t have power to make the same decision, at the same time, in the same way.

Empowerment is smoke and mirrors until management loses power.

When managers and front-line employees “pretend-collaborate,” for example, the group that makes the decision has the power.

Collaboration only occurs between equals committed to consensus decision-making.

Power and authority are zero sum games

The degree that one group gains decision-making power is the degree that another group loses it. When it comes to power, there are gainers and losers. (The plight of Lebanon civil war was that there were No victors, and the militia/mafia leaders ruled Lebanon after the cease fire)

Empowering another is losing your power.

Empowerment doesn’t work where managers won’t give up power.

Preaching empowerment and hanging on to power, at the same time, is manipulation. It’s a way to make people think they have power so they’ll go along and work harder.

Realistic empowerment:

Empowering the workforce creates engagement because it disempowers managers.

  1. Empowerment demands transparency. Those making decisions must have information. If you can’t or won’t share information, you can’t empower.
  2. Empowered organizations have fewer managers. Flat organizations inevitably fire managers. Managers only play at empowerment because they’re protecting their jobs.
  3. Empowerment requires radical preparation. You aren’t disempowered one day and empowered the next. The workforce needs to develop management, communication, and decision-making skills, for example. The role of management during empowerment is preparing the workforce and lowering the number of managers.
  4. Empowered employees connect with customers. Customer service and product development begin with people who actually do the work.

Get real:

The power to “sign-off” on decisions reflects ultimate power. Others are advisers or puppets.

Empowerment, realistically, is a dance of shared power. One time you lead; another they. The most important aspect of empowerment is the negotiation between equals regarding who has power in any given circumstance.

How is empowerment being fleshed out in your organization?

This entire post is inspired by, “Stewardship: Choosing Service Over Self-Interest,” by Peter Block. Peter’s book is highly recommended, but not for the faint of heart.




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