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The 10th Characteristic of the Best-Managed Contact Centers: They Are Effective, Engaged, and Open to Change

Spotlight on Strategy: Join Brad at ICMI Contact Center Connections from October 28-30 in Chicago. He'll be speaking in session 103: "Characteristics of the Best-Managed Contact Centers." 


Henry Ford once said, “If I'd asked customers what they wanted, they would have told me, 'A faster horse!’” What are your customers really trying to tell you?

The most successful contact center teams continually review and reassess how they do things and the results they are achieving. What can be improved? What should be scrapped? What assumptions no longer make sense? What can be done differently? They would agree with the advice of management consultant Dr. Ichak Adizes, who reminds us, "You don't know what you don't know until you know it ... The right solution is a continuous search for the right solution."

Successful contact center leaders also design an organizational structure that facilitates collaboration among and across job roles and business units. They tap into the principles of good organizational design and revisit their structure often. They continually work on identifying positions they need and defining the responsibilities that go along with each. They gauge whether agent-to-supervisor and supervisor-to- manager ratios are working as they should, and adjust them as needed.

Above all, successful leaders know that communication is the glue that holds the whole thing together. They work hard to maintain effective communication, including across distributed teams. They understand how communication creates meaning and direction for people, and they are committed to keeping a common vision at the forefront of the culture and daily activities.

A colleague recently purchased a blender—the kind that makes juice and smoothies. She said the choices were at first overwhelming. She investigated models with positive ratings but also found that in many cases, anywhere from 10% to 15% of the ratings were one star. The thing that swayed her is that one manufacturer had responded to every low rating with an offer to help. She went with the brand that was engaged.

You can’t engage if you don’t show up. You have to be in the game. So, how can you harness your contact center’s potential to change, connect, engage?

This blog post is part of a series on the Characteristics of the Best-Managed Contact Centers. To learn more, join Brad for session 103 at ICMI Contact Center Connections, October 28-30 in Chicago. 

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