Leading While Distracted


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I know that driving distracted is a serious issue.  Nationwide Insurance recently released a study that that includes data from the University of Utah that says “distraction from cell phone use while driving (hand held or hands free) extends a driver’s reaction as much as having a blood alcohol concentration at the legal limit of .08 percent.”  But, as I was driving through the state of Kentucky this past week, I saw something that hit me as funny.   The signs that span interstate 65 had a flashing message  that read “Driving Distracted is Dangerous Driving!”  Is it just me or is it ironic that the big flashing sign that distracted me was put there to remind me that I should not be distracted?  Sorta crazy, huh?

So what does this have to do with frontline management and customer experience?  Glad you asked!

Do you have metrics and statistics posted throughout your office or call center that are actually distracting your employees from what is really important?  Do you have information posted on service levels or statistics but nothing that focuses on the level of satisfaction or quality?

I have been in many call centers across America that post “talk time stats” and “average answer-time” but not one metric anywhere that show  quality scores or customer satisfaction.  Yet the leadership told me that quality was a top priority.

So, do this soon – walk through your office for the express purpose of reading posters, banners, reader-boards and bulletin boards.  What is the message that you see?  Is your culture on display?  Is the customer represented?  Are metrics internal or externally focused?

I believe that the message we post are just as important as the message we speak!   Please don’t lead with distractions.

Bob Furniss
Bob Furniss' career has focused on improving customer experiences. As the Director of Bluewolf's Service Cloud practice, Bob leads a team of consultants who works with clients in three key areas: Salesforce Service Cloud strategy/implementation; Social Media strategy and implementation in the contact center; and creating vision blueprints to help companies set a new course for their contact centers in the areas of people and technology. Follow him on Twitter


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