“Its for you!”


How can I put this without over abundance of swearing. I think I would say that working in a call centre is hard going. Military style clocking in, and out. You have to account for every second of your day. You take a break when they say you can, you eat when they say you can. You take calls, that is your role. You could be the most brilliant person in the world. But let me just say, call centers are, refuges of the brilliant, talented people who just couldn’t seem to get anything better due to one reason or another. Just because you work in a call center does not automatically equal - Massive screw up. But, I digress…

The people who answer the phones, you are often told "You are the most important people in this business." And other such horse-pooh remarks. Frankly, if you believe that, you will believe anything. No, you are an expendable peon whose wage is probably only just higher than the cleaners, but, lower than that of the security guard in the main foyer. No, there are many others who will happily sit with that piece of crap on their head, and take your spot should you fail at your job.

Also lets consider the so called "managers." Most of them, couldn’t manage getting drunk inside a brewery. Most of them too have NO idea about the product they are a manager in! Its actually absurd. You wouldn’t get a colonel in the army, who at one point wasn’t a recruit! They are probably paid double what you are, maybe slightly more, and what they do is a piece of cake. A trained monkey could do the same job. Some may say no its stressful its hard work yadda yadda yadda. No no no. Swap placed with me, then you will see what hard work TRULY is as you talk to some of the most ridiculous people in the world.

So lets get onto the people. We can divide the worst customers up into as follows:

The Tantrumers: These are the angriest of the angry. They will threaten you with court, with the regulator, with anything they can think of. Maybe even… *gasp* changing to another company!! "Now sir, don’t do that, if you talk like that, you will ruin my day! But if you really feel you want to leave, our loss shall surely be their gain(!)" They are ridiculous and there are two ways a "Conversation" With these idiots can go. Either, you have a good laugh at it, or, you feel utterly broken. There is no middle ground. Your winning strategy here; Shut down. No emotion, turn into Spock and be logical. Do not raise your voice, do not show ANY feeling to them at all positive or negative. The Tantrumers want somebody to fight with, or, somebody to use as a punching bag. If you can be Spock, they get neither, this breaks them.

The Legal Experts: And by "expert" I mean somebody who may have read something in a newspaper once and suddenly feels they are a qualified lawyer now. Hilarious. I once read something about open heart surgery. I suppose I should now change to be a heart surgeon. But, the legal experts will happily tell you that you are in breach of contract, and how they pay their bills etc etc… The best way to beat these pretentious armpits, know your T’s & C’s, or get a list of the ones most relevant to your line of the business and then quote away! Shoot the ‘experts’ down in flames! Because I will guarantee you, 99.9% of the Legal Experts won’t even know where to FIND the T’s and C’s much less have read them! So happy hunting!

The Whiners: These are the people who may have before hand been a legal expert, or a tantrumer. They still have the problem, maybe, and maybe not, this is variable. But Whiners are usually the end result of a legal expert being shot down in flames by a T&C legal expert seeking missile. Or, they were a tantrumer who took a Vulcan nerve pinch from Spock. However, some Whiners start out life as whiners, and will whine from their very first call. They will whine about anything and everything, ranging from the company and could even progress onto the weather. The best way to deal with these whining little rat bags? Pretty much, use a combination of the strategies from Tantrumers and Legal Experts, T’s and C’s combined with cold logic. Your goal is to make them realise they are being stupid in such a way you don’t directly call them stupid.

"Network / IT / Computer Technician and or Engineers.": As I work in Telecommunications, these people can pop up occasionally. And they can do your head in as they make you feel like some upstart idiot whom they have lowered themselves to talk to. Best way to prevail against these people? Simply ask them to do something, and then provide absolutely no guidance at all. It need not even be something complicated, perhaps something as run of the mill as ‘please check your ip address for me.’ Something most Network / IT / Computer Technician and or Engineers should be able to do blindfolded and having just been woke at 4am. If they truly are what they say they are. If they are trying to bull-pooh you, expect a reply along the lines of "Refresh my memory, how do I do that again?" Or "Is there a particular way you want me to check it?" Usually something like that to try and save their own face, while at the same time getting help from you. This is your opportunity, to feel really smug inside, as you know that you just made them feel bad. Because lets face it, some people need to be put in their place every once in a while. Even me. :)

Finally you have the Sarcasm Snipers: These are the people who say little but will be only too happy to be sarcastic with you. Just remember sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, and they probably are not very clever, so they resort to the lowest form of wit to try and bolster their own minuscule confidence to make themselves feel better while at the same time trying to make you feel worse. Sarcasm Snipers can be effective, however their ability to use sarcasm is often very limited to perhaps a sentence, maybe a sentence and a bit if they particularly proficient. However, there are ways round this, MAKE Them talk. Take their sarcasm seriously, start doing this and you force them to speak to you like a normal person instead of in sarcastic sound bites which they probably rehearsed before even picking up the phone, and when you do that, again, you lured the sniper out of their nest. You won.

On the whole customers are ok, but one or two can really ruin your day. Now, stats, but… that is a rant for another day.

Peace out

posted under Rants
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