By Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD
Standing groggy-eyed in a fast-food restaurant, contemplating my breakfast options, the positive, friendly demeanor of the girl behind the counter captured my attention. Suddenly she saw someone out of the corner of her eye, and her smile widened. “Good morning Jimmy,” she called out. I assumed Jimmy was a friend.
I was wrong. Jimmy was an older man with a weathered face and considerable limp. He headed straight to an open space at the counter and with much effort, produced a handful of change cupped in his twisted hands. He spilled a few coins on the counter; the girl collected them and rang up an unspoken order.
Then she poured his coffee, meticulously mixed in sugar and cream, topped it off, popped on a lid, and presented it to a grateful Jimmy – all with a smile. She did this with all the care of someone making her own cup. She served Jimmy happily, doing much more than was expected. Her actions framed the rest of my day. I can only guess what it did for Jimmy’s.
I suspect her attitude of cheerfully going the extra mile was so much a part of her that it had become habit. What a difference her positive attitude made for Jimmy and me, as well as for the other customers and her co-workers.
Do you have someone like this young lady in your call center? What if all your staff could be like her? Caller satisfaction would jump, complaints and problems would drop, and your call center would be an even better place to work.
Whether it’s pouring coffee or answering the phone, employees with positive attitudes make a huge difference.