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Updating your call center employee training program

Experts Don Peppers and Martha Rogers give tips on creating a call center employee training program that will captivate a mix of audiences.

In today's workforce, it seems that the majority of applicants for call center agent jobs are Generation Y-aged. I find that the current training methodologies of my organization are old and stuffy. Do you know of some exciting new ways for captivating Gen Y in the training room? And, how should we take Gen Y differences into consideration as far as our customer base goes?
The Gen Y issue is something our own clients have faced recently, too. Carlson Marketing, the parent company for Peppers & Rogers Group, has a variety of tools and techniques available, and we've deployed new employee training technologies for a number of clients.

For example, one of the world's largest software providers has been talking to us about helping them raise the bar for some of their field executive training. This is a very mixed crew, and we need to design a training platform that can accommodate a mix of audience levels, including not just generational differences, but cultural and economic ones, as well.

Some of the call center training best practices we employ include:

  • Increased use of blended media formats and technology. Mixing live, multimedia and technology delivery formats (even music).
  • Leveraging social networks. Include opportunities for social, team-based learning through increased use of breakouts and interactive sessions and exercises.
  • Dynamic approaches. Design an agenda that allows physical movement, rotation, etc. during the course of training sessions.
  • Gaming (online or live). Provide game-like simulation settings for some portions of training which may include some or all of the following elements: individual or team competition, rewards and recognition, time clock and more.
  • Facilitation support. While our subject-matter experts know the content, they are not always the best resources for ensuring meaningful, quality delivery. By teaming with or inserting professional facilitation support, we try to make the training more engaging for the audience.

    If this is something your company would like to learn more about, I would be happy to have someone from this discipline contact you and share some case studies, discuss problems and explore alternatives, just email me directly.

    Hear more in Creating Customer Value, a SearchCRM.com monthly podcast series with Peppers and Rogers.
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