Response Design Corporation:Creating the Uncommon Call Center
Kathryn's Uncommon Call Center Blog
August 20, 2008 01:16 PM
Categories: Customer Experience 
What's Wrong With This Promotion (or is it me)?

I get an email a few days ago that tells me about some new metric research. The email says, "If you are looking to boost your contact center performance, this guide will quickly get you up to speed. Would you like a free copy of this complimentary guide? If so, just let me know."

Immediately I understand this company doesn't "know" me. If they did, they would realize I don't manage a call center and boosting an imaginary call center's performance is not top on my list.

But, I am a research junkie. Therefore, I notify the company that I would like a complimentary copy. I comply with their instructions: "To receive your complimentary guide, simply reply to my email." (There is no link to click.)

I inform the compnay in my email that after reviewing the guide I would like to promote their company and research on the Customer Contact Performance Forum (CCPF) ( I explain we have members who might be interested in requesting the guide (I had no intention of including the entire guide on the CCPF site).

The next day, I get the most baffling email response. The company representative says, "We would prefer this not to be published on a public forum" and "I've attached the guide for your review, but please do not publish a link to this guide."

My next step was to check the company's web site to see if it is legit (and it is). Not only is it legit but the company's products target customer contact / call centers.

I don't get this. Why wouldn't the company want free advertising? Are they concerned compeititors might get a copy of their complimentary guide? Didn't they offer this valuable guide to promote their brand, company, products, and services?

I start wondering what investments companies make (mine included) to promote our products and services that become sunk costs because we put some silly restrictions around them. How many times do we miss out on great opportunities becasue we are trying to protect ourselves from that 1-2% risk that may happen?

I would love to hear what you think. I'm still amazed. Help me - I'm concerned that I'm the crazy one for reacting this way.

Entry logged at 01:16 PM
August 5, 2008 10:51 AM
Categories: Management 
Manager Integrity Linked to Profitability

According to a study conducted by Simons, Walsh, & Sturman (2001) "employee perception of their managers' integrity - both keeping promises and demonstrating espoused values-were strongly linked to hotel profitability." In this study approximately 7500 employees at 84 hotels completed employee surveys that were then matched with the results from approximately 25,000 customer surveys and with financial records. The study showed that small changes in employee perceptions of manager integrity led to big changes in profitability (defined as EBIT divided by total revenues). According to the study if a hotel were to increase its management's integrity score by 1/8th of a point (on a 5 point scale) then the hotel could project an annual increase in revenues of 2.5 percent.

Interestingly, the researchers also found that employee commitment was more of a driver of customer satisfaction than was employee satisfaction.

The study defines "behavioral integrity" as how well a manager's deeds align (or misalign) to his words. In some ways this represents the older version of "walking the talk." When a manager's actions are not aligned to what he or she says then the employee does not consider the manager to have behavioral integrity.

While the study only involves the hotel industry, I think we can ask ourselves some important questions.

Are we, as contact center professionals, unaware of misalignments between our own words and deeds? How many of us examine whether or not we do what we say or ask how our employees perceive us? How many of us have considered how our integrity affects employee commitment and ultimately the success of our organization?

Do we teach any of these concepts to our managers or directors? Do we train our management team about integrity? Is it part of our performance appraisals?

What do you think about this link? Have you ever worked for someone with great integrity and found your commitment was better than when working for someone you perceived as lacking integrity? Or how about your commitment level when your witnessed a lack of behavioral integrity in your manager or management team? Did one infraction cause your commitment to wane or did it take multiple instances? We'd love to hear about this topic from your perspective / experience.

Simons, Walsh, Sturman (2002). Service from the heart: The relative influence of job satisfaction and affective commitment on service quality and employee turnover. Organization Science, 13(1). 18-35.

Entry logged at 10:51 AM
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