I think we all like talking on the phone, but is everyone suitable to do it professionally? Privately, although it’s rude, we can always hang up when our conversation goes wrong, professionally you have to endure everything. What does “everything” mean? The average consultant has about 100 recorded calls a day, with different types of people caught somewhere in a difficult day at work or in the middle of some personal problem. A telephone consultant must initiate, conduct and calmly finish each such conversation.
Do we have to have some secret knowledge and predisposition to withstand and deal with such telephone challenges? Definitely not, everyone – regardless of age, sex, education, employment history – has a chance to work in a call center, provided that they pass the recruitment process. Recruitment mainly consists in examining the candidate’s predispositions during telephone simulations, diction and culture of expression are also important. Everyone learns the rest on the spot, thanks to special training and regular care of the trainer.
The Perfect Consultant
According to research, a telemarketer should be a very extroverted, energetic person with a positive attitude to life, open to people and new situations. Since this work is really about conversation, the person must not only be very talkative, but also must be able to quickly change the direction of the conversation and tone of voice, depending on the situation and emotions of the calling client.
It is also important not to react too emotionally to the moods and words of the other party. Composure, emotional resistance and high self-esteem will allow you not to pay too much attention to negative reactions of interlocutors and not take critical remarks towards yourself. These qualities are needed to be successful. However, to maintain this success, typical office skills are needed – order, great organization, diligence and persistence.
Only for Young People?
When we enter any call center in the world, we will immediately see that the team of consultants consists mainly of young people. For many of them it is the first job, but – as can be seen – often the first big step in their careers. They get another job in corporations for which they worked in a call center (or at their competitors), because they know their products and procedures very well.
In call centers, however, more and more often we meet elderly people, often even retirees. Such people have completely different predispositions, have more experience in conducting conversations, are more composed and easily use examples from everyday life or work. Mixed teams like these are great and complementary.
Knowledge Reduces Stress
Young or old, no matter – working “on headphones” means constant changes in campaigns and offers, pressure to record each conversation, very often contact with an unfavorable interlocutor, as well as remuneration often dependent on the result. This is why it is so important to motivate and conduct training on a regular basis. Each consultant is under the care of a trainer from the very beginning, who monitors and provides the necessary support, e.g. in the field of gaining knowledge about conducting interviews and selling various types of products.
When making the first calls, a well-prepared consultant cannot think about substantive shortcomings, therefore, depending on the project to which he will be dedicated, various forms of introducing him to work are prepared for him. The most common are: substantive training, sales training in the form of workshops and simulations of conversations with trainers, which take place regularly and consist in selecting the most difficult situations and their in-depth analysis.
The training’s teach every element of the conversation, both how to open it and how to get the interlocutor’s attention, and how to listen and relate to what the client says. Much of the science, however, is devoted to negotiation, which allows the agent to achieve the desired effect (by reducing objections) and successfully end the conversation.
During the training, great emphasis is placed on the agent always treating each interlocutor individually, looking for new ways to encourage conversation, and intelligently responding to his needs. Conversations cannot be artificial, detached from a specific case, so the trainer teaches how to follow the script without making basic mistakes.
There is no need to be afraid of the work of a telemarketer. It is a good place for young people who are just entering their professional path and for more experienced employees. Each of them can bring a different, unique quality to the telesales process. All you need is openness, optimism, appropriate diction and participation in training courses organized by the employer, which will provide knowledge and teach the art of negotiation.