Appreciating Phone Reps: Follow-up

Appreciating Phone Reps: Follow-up

The New Year inspires many of us to resolve to form good habits, break poor habits; become a better person, read more, exercise, be more sensitive to others; set new goals, clean out drawers, closets, garages, attics, offices, sheds and be kinder in conversations, etc.

Several responses to Appreciating Phone Reps indicate that the blog jogged some meaningful early-attitude-decisions. Comments and emails from former phone reps have been enlightening, proving what we already know, that good behavior taught to our children by word and example is also caught as we age and observe, listen to or read about others, prompting an adjustment in our attitude and words as well.

Thanks for another great blog entry!  I woke up very early this morning and could not get back to sleep.  I Realized that it was Tuesday and I had not read your blog as I always do on Monday, so I got up and headed right to the computer at 6AM.  Your words put me in a good frame of mind to start the day. Thanks!P

This was an interesting blog post. Dealing with phone reps, working the system to get to a live person. Sometimes, after about six transfers, I am not sure if this is a live person so I ask, "Am I speaking to a live human now?" It can also happen if a live human picks up after only one transfer because I expect many more buttons to push.  But I prefer to wait rather than leaving a message. I am rather impulsive and want an answer NOW! Waiting for the telephone to ring is nerve-wracking. I'd rather put the phone on speaker phone, then work on something on my computer while they play their music and repeat every 10 seconds how important my call is. One time I did that with Chat, then forgot about it and didn't notice when they did turn up. Telephone works best for me. But getting angry and yelling at the reps? That's not okay. It's simply not decent. I want to be a decent person so I do my very best to stay calm and be polite. After all, I have to live with myself!  S

So true about life in general. Good advice for talking to students and their parents. L

Really interesting and successful phone conversation with service rep!! That's a job I used to have at Nationwide Insurance. It can be really tedious as well as challenging. But I loved it. Now I get calls from residents here in the condo community or they stop in the office when I volunteer once a week, as am secretary on the board. But these folks are not volunteers and constantly demand, complain, are busy bodies, or neurotic and challenges good communication! Some days it takes all I have to be polite, keeping my attitude calmed. And there are other influences that cause me to be cranky, still not an excuse. I will put into practice my sweeter understanding self in 2022!! Thank you for the reminder. R

I enjoyed this week's blog.  I was a phone rep for several years.  I learned an "I'm sorry you're having this difficulty" goes a LONG way when dealing with an unhappy or angry customer.  When I'm the upset caller and the rep doesn't apologize, it certainly doesn't calm me down.  It's kind of weird how a simple "I'm sorry" can be so diffusing of a situation. D

Since Medicare enrollment is over, they have stopped for now. I am still going to be more considerate.  H

Really good blog...I was a phone prayer representative at the 700 Club for a few months where I had to listen to tearful, hopeful and heartbreaking prayer requests, pray with them and ask for a financial donation in about 2 was very difficult for me to "cut off the call" and my career there was short. Whenever I have to talk to a phone representative from my Healthcare, Medicare or Consumer Cellular, I always ask for their name and where they are located...I keep the conversation light and friendly and I can't remember when I was ever aggravated. S

Great blog! I was on the rep side (another career ago) and many escalations were transferred to me as well. Gosh, my title was actually "escalation supervisor." The front line was mostly college students and they were so happy I would take those "not so nice" callers. If I could not solve the problem or diffuse the caller, I would politely say, "Would you like to hold while I page the manager, or would it be better if I asked her to give you a call back directly?? That usually did the trick...Thank you!  B

When I emailed my phone rep to tell him about good responses I had received from the blogs that he had inspired, he replied that he was looking forward to reading both when he returned from vacation. Now, I wish I could somehow send the blog to all his future callers.  I’ve heard from a few who have shared the blog with their family and FaceBook friends so hopefully we can get the word around about appreciating phone reps.

Verses from Proverbs offer excellent advice for times when we struggle with dialogues that go awry in the neighborhood, during family gatherings, and sometimes curt conversations even showing up at church meetings or clubs.  Thoughtless comments which slip out easily are often misunderstood and muddle even longtime friendships. If we make any changes for 2022, let it be endeavoring to eliminate relational conflicts. For that, we all need the wisdom that comes from above.

…if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, 5 then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.  For the Lord gives wisdom and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding. …10 for wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul. Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you. Prov. 2:1-5,10

We are wise to be on guard all the time by pausing before we speak to give our minds time to respond in an acceptable and healing way.  Maintaining a goal of leaving listeners better than we found them resembles the regular routine of adding oil to a machine to insure smooth running.

Remember, it’s not the situation we’re in but the attitude we take. Perhaps that brief sentence could become your mantra for 2022.  If you have children or youth or are a teacher, it would be a good principle to introduce. We never outgrow the need to adopt new or adjust and/or eliminate worn out attitudes. Have a safe, refreshing, productive and pleasant 2022.

P.S. after finishing composing this blog, I came across the following: In school, we study; and then get tested.  In life, the tests come first and we scramble around seeking wisdom to apply understanding to the daily situation tests. We choose the changes on the outside; the Spirit makes needed changes on the inside.

“…to be made new in the attitude of your minds.”  says Paul in Eph. 4:23. The New Year is a fresh, crisp beginning for improving our attitudes.

When my friend, Lynn, called me on New Year’s Day, and I shared what this week’s blog was about, he suggested adding the descriptive addition of ‘on-the-job-learning’. I think it fits well and reminds us that improvement is an on-going endeavor.

Father, help us to reflect the changes you’ve made in us. Amen

Next week begins a brush-up on understanding what to do with our emotions and cognitive thinking.