Emotional Labor and Intelligence

Essay by benewUniversity, Bachelor'sA, November 2006

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ClientLogic is not unlike any other corporate call center and is charged with emotion. Like other companies they have to account for this when hiring and training workers to take on this critical role in customer contact. The emotional labor of dealing with customers can lead to costly employee burnout and high turnover rates. It is important to figure out ways to counter stressful situations so employees are not overwhelmed by their work.

One of the biggest challenges faced by a CSR is dealing with the hostility that can come their way from the customer. A lot of the call center workers feel that they have the ability to help the customer, but do not have the authority needed to take action. This forces the customer to get angry enough to ask for someone who does have the authority. This can be incredibly frustrating for the initial call center representative.

Another big challenge for call center representatives is scripting. Most workers say that scripting is too restrictive and shows less emotion to the customer. According to Larry Hunter, a professor of Management at University of Wisconsin-Madison, scripting builds skills, and managers have a reason to want to use them but more scripting is associated with less job satisfaction, greater burnout and a higher intention to quit the job. To read more on this study please visit (http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article.cfm?articleid=997&CFID=2051003&CFTOKEN=68173421).

ClientLogic, overall, I believe is a little weak in the Emotional Intelligence category. The constant pressure to do more with less, to answer more calls with fewer people, and to decrease cost at any cost is hurting the call center business big time. If we don't properly assess a candidate for competencies that drive performance, then we deserve the turnover we get. High on the list of critical competencies is agent resiliency.