Be an Attitude Adjuster

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We post a lot about coach­ing here at the Impact Blog! One key rea­son why it’s impor­tant to be a great coach is that your actions and approach to coach­ing can seri­ously affect your employ­ees’ atti­tudes and the over­all level of morale in the workplace.

In con­tact cen­ters where pos­i­tive coach­ing occurs and morale is high, employ­ees approach their work with energy, enthu­si­asm, and the will­ing­ness to suc­ceed. They want to come to work, or at least are enthu­si­as­tic about work once they get there. On the other hand, when coach­ing is always neg­a­tive or non-existent, morale is low and employ­ees can become bored, dis­cour­aged, and lethargic.

It’s not impos­si­ble to have high pro­duc­tiv­ity and decent bottom-line results in an envi­ron­ment where morale is low, but it is unlikely. As a coach (or a man­ager who rou­tinely coaches employ­ees), you should care about how your employ­ees feel, if for no other rea­son than because it’s the right thing to do. But even if you’re not a con­vert to that way of think­ing and that style of man­age­ment, here are some other good rea­sons for you to care about your employ­ees’ morale and apply prin­ci­ples of pos­i­tive coaching:

Pos­i­tive coach­ing leads to high employee morale. High morale in a con­tact cen­ter envi­ron­ment can lead to:

  • Increased job satisfaction
  • Lower turnover rates
  • Higher pro­duc­tiv­ity
  • Reduced absen­teeism
  • Higher own­er­ship of cus­tomer concerns
  • Less job-related stress
  • Increased iden­ti­fi­ca­tion with the company’s mission
  • Higher cus­tomer satisfaction
  • Increased cus­tomer loyalty

It’s good for you, it’s good for them—and it’s good for the bot­tom line. In a sur­vey con­ducted by David H. Mas­ter, the author of Prac­tice What You Preach, it was found that happy divi­sions out­per­formed unhappy ones by as much as 42 percent.

It’s easy to make the assump­tion that the key to higher morale is sim­ply to give the agents what they want. But that isn’t always the case. What they want—or think they want—may be min­i­mal work, lots of play, and plenty of pay. But we’ve found in a num­ber of cen­ters that what really makes employ­ees thrive is a dynamic, pos­i­tive envi­ron­ment in which agents are con­tin­u­ally learn­ing and their per­for­mance is con­tin­u­ally improv­ing. So how do you make this hap­pen? Good question!

It’s impor­tant for you as the man­ager or coach to cre­ate and fos­ter a cli­mate of enthu­si­asm, open com­mu­ni­ca­tion, and active par­tic­i­pa­tion. It’s in this kind of envi­ron­ment that agents will be pro­duc­tive and com­mit­ted to your goals. You’ll find that a lit­tle goes a long way: if employ­ees see you—and the orga­ni­za­tion as a whole—making an effort to meet their needs and treat them well, they’ll be inclined to give you their best efforts.

On the other hand, if you cre­ate a cli­mate of mis­trust and uncer­tainty, your agents will tend to do just enough to get by. And they’ll prob­a­bly only do that until it becomes more appeal­ing to find employ­ment at some other com­pany. Of course, in almost every orga­ni­za­tion there are some “get by” peo­ple who will always be “get by” peo­ple no mat­ter what you do to encour­age, inspire, moti­vate, and trans­form them. If you’re seri­ous about improv­ing the morale of your team, the time may come when you need to give stern warn­ings to those agents whose atti­tudes are weigh­ing down the morale of the group. Then, if they con­tinue to cre­ate prob­lems, it may be best to ter­mi­nate them.

Here are some tips for becom­ing a more pos­i­tive coach:

And if you need to train your super­vi­sory staff on pos­i­tive coach­ing tech­niques, please take a look at Mak­ing It Hap­pen™. This train­ing pro­gram, spe­cific to con­tact cen­ters, includes every­thing you need to improve the coach­ing skills of your super­vi­sors and team lead­ers so you can reap the rewards of a pos­i­tive work envi­ron­ment and good employee morale.

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