Invest in Your Front-line Supervisors


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If you’re at all like me, you’ve lost count of the times you’ve read that you should be investing in your employees. Invest in your employees and they’ll stick around forever and become valued brand advocates. But which employees? Surely not all of them? That could be incredibly costly. With turnover rates at an all-time high, here is my advice to you: Follow this growing trend and invest in your front-line supervisors.

People Leave Management – Not Companies

There are many reasons a company may have high turnover: poor working conditions, low pay, bad hours, and mandatory over-time to name a few. But, statistics show the number one reason an employee leaves a job is bad management. A bad supervisor can quickly compromise an otherwise well-performing team. The ripple effect of bad management reaches all aspects of business and will quickly affect not only employee morale but also customer loyalty.

“People leave managers not companies…in the end, turnover is mostly a manager issue,” Gallup wrote in its survey findings. The effect of poor management is widely felt. Gallup also determined that poorly managed work groups are on average 50 percent less productive and 44 percent less profitable than well-managed groups. Compuserve

Front-line supervisors with excellent communication and coaching skills will transform a mediocre performing team into a good team and a good team into the envy of the entire center. Recently the Blue Cross Blue Shield Federal Employee Program needed to improve their customer satisfaction scores from an outsourced customer service department. Not only did they train agents, but they also invested in training supervisors with the critical skills needed to sustain agent training and improve performance over time. The results of a Gallup poll showed impressive survey results:

  • 98% of customers said their call was treated in a professional manner.
  • 91% said the CSR quickly understood why they called.
  • 92% said the response they received was given in a clear and understandable fashion.
  • 91% said the response they received was accurate as far as they knew.
  • 96% said the service they received was outstanding, very good, or good.

Reduce Turnover with Great Management

Good front-line supervision is integral to lowering employee turnover. With the high costs of recruiting, hiring, and training new agents continually increasing, why not jump on the bandwagon and invest in existing employees and improve overall company operations? Some managers and supervisors naturally possess exemplary communication skills. Others need training and exposure to the positive effects of a learn-by doing-method of managing and motivating employees.

“Whether you are pushing your ready-now talent to do something new or helping your ready-soon players elevate their game, learning and career development is an essential ingredient in retaining employees and creating a motivated workforce; one that dramatically improves organizational culture, alignment, execution and performance results.” Lisa Rohland, director of learning and development, GlaxoSmithKline North America. (as quoted in Chief Learning Officer, November 2011.

The next time you review your training schedule, be sure to include time for your front-line supervisors. Improving their skills with call center coaching training will reduce employee turnover and increase customer satisfaction.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Rachel Miller
Rachel Miller is the Customer Engagement Manager at Nimble - a simple, affordable social relationship manager.


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