23 Nov Thanksgiving: 10 Ways to Say Thanks to Your Customer Service Agents
Posted at 05:00h in Agent Training/Retention
It’s Thanksgiving week! Time for family get-togethers, big meals and Black Friday. You can help your agents feel valued. In a time where retaining quality employees is vital, remember to thank your customer service agents, now and all year round:
- Recognize that your agents want to enjoy the holidays too. Help them to do that. Be as considerate as possible with scheduling. If you can’t realistically give them what they want, be honest. Offer them a future consideration to keep working relations positive. (Remember to follow through with those considerations!)
- Acknowledge their value to your business. You may be understaffed and your agents may be working extra hours. Appreciate their work. Make sure they know that you know your business cannot thrive through the craziness of the holiday season without them.
- Say thank you and mean it. These polite gestures are more powerful than you may think.
- Get into the holiday spirit. Decorate the workspace. Let your agents help if they want to. If they are working from home send a holiday newsletter or have an ugly (or most unique) sweater contest or have a communal board on your digital workspace where agents can share recipes, customer service stories (including agent hero stories) and pictures.
- Be inclusive. Not everyone celebrates the holidays in the same way. Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Yule, even choosing not to celebrate – do your best to ensure all faiths and lifestyles are allowed to be acknowledged. Celebrate the individuals not just the holiday.
- Support agents’ mental health. Remind them to breathe and give them space to do it. Support them during and after difficult interactions. As much as possible, let your agents take a moment to step away and regroup after difficulties so they aren’t depleted
- Give your agents a gift. This doesn’t have to be complex or expensive. Even a holiday card is better than no token at all. Consider an employee breakfast, seasonal snacks, digital gift certificate or even contributing to a white elephant exchange.
- Be empathetic. Even agents have emergencies whether it’s a sick child, car trouble or being sick themselves. These circumstances are already stressful enough. Work with agents to make things work and they will in turn work for you (that’s a lot of work).
- Show strong, clear leadership. Make sure company policies are clear and followed at every level. Balance that empathy we talked about with emotional intelligence and professionalism. Your example can be infectious and gives your agents confidence in you.
- Invest in agent knowledge and advancement. Give your agents the tools to thrive in their role with ongoing training and great tools. Have paths for them to advance and be compensated for their increased value.
Every investment you make pays you back in a smoother work environment and your agents showing up and going the distance with you this holiday season. Happy Thanksgiving!