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The Value of Integrated Coaching in the Contact Center

As a diehard men’s college basketball fan, the four-week period between “Selection Sunday” until a national champion is crowned, commonly referred to as March Madness, is one of the most intense and exciting months of the year.

Sixty-eight teams tipped-off between mid-March and April, all vying for the crown of Best College Basketball Team in the Country.  And while all of the teams have talented athletes, and have achieved successful seasons to reach this stage, it’s their coaches that often deserve the most credit. 

Coaches recognize the strengths and opportunity areas of every player, and help guide each player to improvements that will ultimately boost the overall performance of the team.  You don’t find coaches telling players to simply “score more points”; they actually help them understand how to score more points.  And the best coaches emphasize “in-game coaching”, taking a few seconds during the game to guide the player to better performance, without taking him fully out of the game environment.

And while coaching in the contact center occurs almost as frequently as coaching on the court, not enough “in-game coaching” is happening. 

Contact center “in-game coaching”, or Integrated Coaching, is what the most effective coaches emphasize, by a more than 3:1 margin.  Yet many coaches still emphasize scheduled coaching sessions that happen away from the floor, away from the action, over Integrated Coaching.

And while some scheduled coaching time is needed, many organizations have slipped into the rut of using this time for performance evaluation, or spreadsheet coaching, instead of focusing on the behaviors that are causing those outcomes to occur.

The value of Integrated Coaching occurs because reps get short bursts of real-time Coaching that happen at their workstation, surrounded by the tools and resources they use everyday, based on the behaviors that should be improved to boost performance.  Taking them out of their environment for coaching is like a basketball coach waiting to give feedback until after the game has ended.  

And by that point, they’ve probably lost their shot at the championship.

Want to learn how to improve your supervisors’ chances for National Championship level success?  Join me at Contact Center Expo and Conference for an interactive & educational 75-minute session: Teaching Supervisors Best-in-Class Coaching Practices.

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