5 Phrases a Contact Center Agent Should Never Say

Written by KOVA Corp

There are many times in the course of a day that an agent may be stumped by a question or frustrated with a difficult client. No matter their struggles, though, it is important that they keep their cool while in contact with the client. This article will touch on some of the phrases that many agents find themselves saying in an uncomfortable situation, even though their managers would most likely not approve.

1. “We don’t deal with that.”

If a client calls into a company looking for assistance with something in particular, it is very likely that they are not contacting the correct department. Instead of making them feel uncomfortable or angry for your unwillingness to help, state that you can transfer them over or find them the correct number to call to get an answer to their question. In contrast to “we don’t deal with that,” offering a solution will be highly appreciated by clients.

2. “If you keep yelling, I’ll hang up this call.”

If a caller is shouting, presenting them with an ultimatum is not the best way to handle the situation. In the case that you or the caller does actually hang up, they will most likely call right back and be passed along to another agent. Instead of passing an unhappy caller around between agents, the original agent can insist on their ability to solve the caller’s problem, if they can discuss it calmly. This technique tends to be more successful that offering a threatening ultimatum.

3. “I’ll just put you on hold.”

The words “ on hold” is perhaps the most despised word for callers. By saying that word, agents are running the risk that the caller will get upset and not agree to it. This puts the agent in an uncomfortable position since they most likely needed to request something from a colleague or supervisor. To avoid the words “on hold,” let the customer know that you need to do something like ask permission from a supervisor or confirm with a colleague. It is also important to be upfront and tell the customer how long they can expect to be on hold.

4. “Would you like to speak to my supervisor?”

Sometimes, it is inevitable that a customer will want to speak with a supervisor. While it may seem tempting to save time and offer them the option sooner, there are a variety of reasons not to. Not only will your supervisor not appreciate you sending a high volume of your calls to them, it makes an agent appear as a pushover to the customer. If they know the agent doesn’t have the power or confidence to say no, then they will be programmed to always ask for a supervisor immediately.

5. Nothing

Saying nothing at all without any explanation can be problematic, to say the least. If an agent needs 30 seconds to do a calculation or read something over, be sure to explain to the client why they have all of a sudden gone completely silent. Callers should never have to ask if the agent is still on the line or be questioning whether the line cut out.

With our Speech Analytics platform, you can have calls placed into categories based on words and phrases spoken during the call.  With this platform, you could easily find any calls that contain any of these phrases, in addition to others that may be considered flags.  We can assist in finding emotional calls, and reduce customer attrition by having software “listen” to all of your calls and provide insight into the largest source of data coming into your Contact Center, the words spoken by your customers and your employees.  Contact us to find out more.

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