As a customer service representative, your communication style greatly affects the way you interact with callers. Often, how you talk to customers and approach the issues they raise can determine the success or failure of a transaction. To keep delivering your best performance, it pays to be aware of the way you’re communicating with customers so you’ll be able to enhance your skills.
Plus, call center managers often look for agents with great communication and customer service skills. These are the most well-rounded professionals who are both tech-savvy and capable of empathizing with customers, listening to them, and offering great solutions.
Here are the four main communication styles agents use when talking to customers (and some tips for performance improvement).
If you’re an analytical agent, then you probably pay more attention to specific details instead of the big picture. During conversations with customers, what probably annoys you the most are vague descriptions and too much emotion.
Although your unmatched ability to analyze the smallest of details makes you an efficient problem solver, you may appear cold or aloof to customers.
To prevent this from happening, be careful with your choice of words. Make an effort to be friendly to customers. If they’re having a hard time explaining their problems, you may ask them questions to help them get to the bottom of the issue, but do so in a nice manner.
As opposed to the analytical agent, the intuitive communicator focuses on the big picture. If you think this is your communication style, then you probably don’t get sidetracked by unnecessary details easily. This makes customer service transactions straightforward and fast.
The downside is that you may easily lose patience when dealing with problems that involve too many details. Don’t let this discourage you by shifting your focus to the issue raised by the customer.
Functional communicators may be the most intelligent type, as they have the qualities of both the analytical and intuitive agent. Because they’re interested in how small details add up to the big picture, they can easily explain step-by-step procedures to customers.
These customer service skills almost make them the ideal call center agents, but they also have a weakness. They may find it hard to explain complex ideas or concepts to customers in easy-to-understand terms, or they may get carried away and be unnecessarily verbose.
To avoid this, remember that you must always communicate in the clearest and most succinct way. Be patient at all times, especially when you’re delivering complex messages to customers.
Personal communicators are great listeners. They empathize with callers, make use of emotional language to appease customers, and are highly tactful. Often, they effectively resolve conflicts even when customers are getting frustrated.
The problem is that they tend to focus on people’s emotions at the expense of problem solving, as they don’t value details that much. Therefore, agents with this communication style should learn to balance their emotional and logical sides to enhance the quality of customer service transactions.