NobelBiz® Blog | First Contact Podcast VIDEO | How does a company own a customer’s momenthttps://nobelbiz.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/christian-montes.png Host Christian Montes Executive Vice President Client Operations ‘Nobody owns the customer, but someone always owns the moment.’ How can a company make sure that it owns the customer moment? More from the episode! https://nobelbiz.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/07/Furniss-roundpic.png Guest Bob Furniss Senior Director, Global Salesforce at Slalom Published on July 14, 2022 Work Remotely with our True Omnichannel Solution: Owning the Moment Christian: I love what you do there, when it comes to the idea that in that customer service role to drive that positive customer experience, it's people working with people. And if you have a person that cares, if you have a person at their core, as you say, that has a service mentality in that you have a great question related to that, but you not only have people that are willing to listen and care, but to do something about it. They're compelled in their nature to do something, to solve a problem. And it's so great to be able to take that core of people and then build them up. You know, you don't talk, stop at just hiring somebody and hoping for the best you're talking about training them, onboarding them continuous training. And I'm sure some sort of opportunities as they continue to grow. 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Now, one of the things you had mentioned in your LinkedIn profile that was actually really resonating with, uh, with me and others where, you know, nobody owns the customer, but someone always owns the moment. Can you kind of elaborate a little bit on that and how does a company own a customer's moment? Bob: The way you asked that my answer sounds a little silly, but you, you do it through, you do it through ownership. Um, you've gotta give your. Employees, the ability to own moments, give them permission. Um, I, I I've talked about that in training before that. I, I don't, I, I need permission to answer the question. Um, and so if I give you permission to own the, the, the answer, um, at bells south, we were struggling with folks who were leaving in, in a, in a churn situation. And we were giving away too many credits to try to hang on to customers. So we got together in a room and talked about how to, how to solve that and what our decision was was to put all of our agents through a negotiation training and have them the ability to listen and negotiate with the customer. And then we gave them the ability to give away twice as much money as what we had originally had approval, because what was happening is they, they could give up to a hundred dollars, but then for anything more, they had to get a supervisor's approval. So now I've got a, I've got somebody coming to somebody and asking a question. And so when we trained them on how to negotiate, when we train them on how to get to the, to the specific need of the customer, what we found is they were able to solve problems. And our credits actually went down and our churn went down because what I was doing was giving them ownership to the moment, giving them that ownership. And then I also would ask the listeners out there. When's the last time that you talked about a customer situation, when you're talking to your, your agents, when you're talking to your supervisors, use moments, we've talked about customer opportunities that on, on this call use moments where you're trying to change a policy or change a process, use those moments by talking about how the impact of the customer is and, and, and the customer that you impacted by changing that, um, so that they feel the ownership of the customer. The customer I is, has a particular kind of product, but I can own the moment that I talk with you and I can, I can seek out ways to solve your problems, to provide you with the, what you're asking for. And there are times the customers not always right. There are times where the answer is is no, but let me tell you what I can do versus just, no, that's not possible. I don't know about you, but my, my, my, my biggest pet peeve is so the policy says we can't do that. Really, really the policy says that the policy is living my life. The policy is in the middle of my problem, the policy didn't didn't, isn't gonna make it to their meeting tomorrow. I don't think, I don't think that's a legitimate answer own the moment. Help the customer. You know, that's so special. I mean, there's so much to unpack there, right? You really have so many layers, right? There's the empowerment of the agent. There's the trust that you give someone so that they can make decisions. And in the end, when you have that trust, you have that training, you have that reinforcement. goodness gracious. Look what it does to retention. You have people that actually like their job more they're feeling like they actually have a decision, right? You know, most customer service roles have high stress, but very low control. Right? You don't really have a lot of control in doing much and really are in many ways, companies will make you into a gatekeeper. 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