5 REASONS THIS STUPID WOMAN WOULD BE PROUD FOR HER KIDS TO WORK IN A CALL CENTRE

While setting a few poeple straight via my Twitter feed about the horrors of call Centre work, I came across a Tweet so eyebrow raisingly preposterous I had to get right down to business and call them out on their bullshit post haste.  The Tweet was a simple one, yet so evidently composed by someone who had never stepped through the ever revolving doors of a Call Centre it made my blood boil.  It said :

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The full offending article can be found here if you’re interested, but in a nutshell, she lists the five “skills” you need to succeed in a Call Centre.  And naturally, she doesn’t have a damn clue so I’ve done the decent thing and corrected her article just a smidgen, to ensure it’s factual. 

Carolyn says : 

1. COMMUNICATION

To succeed in a call centre you need to learn to listen, get concise, and speak clearly, fluently and with energy. You have to ask good quality questions and learn how to keep conversations on track.

Actually Carolyn, what you need to succeed in a Call Centre is the ability to cut out a customers’ bullshit mid sentence, before they bore you into the Verbal Nod zone, and an iron will last seen in WWII PoW’s.  You need to speak with about as much energy as you can muster after a day of suffering abuse and stupid bullshit, while trying to get your pals’ attention by pointing at your phone and making wanker signs.  I agree with listening however; it’s important you’re able to pick out a few key words during a call while tuning out the rest of the meandering, whiny, boring bullshit you’ve heard a hundred times today already.

2. PEOPLE SKILLS

You need to learn people skills. It is essential to find common ground, make small talk with the customer and to build rapport. As hard as it may seem at times it’s always important to use humour and find the positives in every situation. Working in call centre teaches you how to calm people down or build confidence in others. Ultimately you learn to empathise and problem-solve from the others person’s perspective.

Finding the positives in every situation really is a stalwart skill of the Call Centre veteran – it takes real ‘People Skills’ to find the a positive highpoint of the conversation you’ve just had which has left the customer sobbing uncontrollably after their sixth call of the day and calling you a piece of shit for destroying their faith in mankind.  

You don’t need to see things from the customer’s perspective, because their perspective on the situation is wrong, because they are incapable of reading the smallprint or thinking rationally in their blind fury.  If they genuinely thought that the minimum wage store clerk who offered them  a credit card on the fly was doing them a favour and not somehow helping hurl them into a spiral of debt and telephone calls to India, frankly you deserve the hell you’re about to suffer to attempt to rectify the situation.

3. TENACITY

You have to have motivation to take or make those calls. Self discipline, personal resilience and time management are the characteristics which will make you stand out in this industry.

Or as most of us know it, alcohol consumption or smoking a joint during your piss break to help you cope with the abject misery of the rest of your day.

4. TEAMWORK

Whether you love or loathe BBC 3’s ‘Call Centre’ Manager Neville Wilshire, he has got team spirit in that place and it all snowballs from him. When they sang ‘We Are Family’ I wanted to be in their family! The support, friends and (sometimes romance!) is all part of this unique and wonderful close knit environment. You only get out what you put in and everyone needs to do their fair share.

Ah yes, BBC 3’s “The Call Centre”.  Because that’s just what call all Call Centres are like.

5. BROADEN YOUR HORIZONS


If you think of a call centre job as being ‘stuck in a building on a business park’ you are looking at it all wrong. Those telephone lines bring in people from all walks of life and as almost 80%* of UK call centre activity is inbound; the customer is calling YOU to ask for help.

When you walk out of that business park at the end of a shift knowing you helped people, learned life skills, got paid and had fun? Well, it sounds like a good deal to me.

Presumably that’s because you were abused as a child or something, because that’s the only possible reason I could conceive as to why you think working round the clock and on weekends, taking abuse and all kinds of shit from condescending jackasses for every minute of your day, and having no career prospects whatsoever is a ‘good deal’.  I’ll make a deal with you – you spend six months selling insurance in a Call Centre, and if you feel the same way then as you do know, I will know you’re a bigger liar than you are a fool.

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On another note, look at some of the replies to this crap, first quote courtesy of jobsworth company linespouter Laura Doyle :


“I completely agree Chalky, the more time I spend visiting contact centres, the more amazed I am by the industry – and even if agents don’t stick it out in the long run, the fundamental skills they will acquire are fantastic and easily transferable.”



You must be one of those fucks who walks around the Call Centre with a notepad and cheap suit, and is oh so impressed by the hour we spent before you arrived tidying the place up, and removing all the shit form people’s desks like their phones and magazines.  You’ve never spent any time working in a Call Centre answering the phones, so of course you’ll be amazed at how professional it all seems.  And as soon as you’re gone, we’re all back to slouching in our seats and muting the dickhead on the phone so we can laugh/hurl abuse at them for allowing themselves to fall into such a stupid fucking predicament that they have to call us.  But yes, our skills are highly trasferable... to another Call Centre.


And look at this stupid jackass, who goes by the name of "Chalky" Langley (here's a tip "Chalky", using your nickname about the place doesn't make us like you more; in fact we hate your stupid fucking best mate mentality and mock approachable demeanour) :


"The problem is our teams and our customers hear and read all the negativity out there surrounding our industry instead of articles like this. There may be a couple of bad apples that do not look after their people but generally I think we offer a career option that is rewarding and fulfilling in so many way…and the customer service to match. Well said Caroline!"


Another out of touch executive who fails to realise all those ‘coffee mornings’ with staff are prearranged with the people least likely to bitch and moan irrationally, of which there are many.  I would say 80% of your staff hate you.  80%, or however many unfortunates in your organization have to sit and answer the phone.  They hate you because you tell them they’re valuable, yet pay them less money than the guy who comes to fill the vending machine.  They hate you because you think working in a Call Centre can be a rewarding career option, because you are surrounded by overpaid Team Leaders who know they have a sweet deal and don’t want to jeopardize that shit by telling you how unbearably fucking miserable their staff are.

14 comments:

  1. This, CCF, this is fucking brilliant. Keep fighting the good fight. You tell it how it is and that's no mean feat along with all the corporate bollocks you must have to put up with on a daily basis. Just know that you're not alone. I for one can relate to every point you've made above. I escaped the CC Matrix a few years back but still have nightmares. Just know that this has gone some way to exorcising my mental demons. It's good therapy. A wise man once told me that if you hang a headset upside down, it looks like a hangman's noose. I'll leave you with that one. Respect to you.

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  2. This blog is great. Think how much happier everyone would be if we did away with fucking professionalism at every point. One thing I could add is that they LIE. I've worked at one call centre where they realised they couldn't pay everyones bonus so they just held up a brand new bonus sheet and said "This always was the bonus sheet, what do you mean?" I'm like, "No its fucking well not, you are lying, give me my god-damned money i worked for!"
    lol I'm so fed up with the current call centre I've just stopped turning up for work. No I don't have another job lined up. I just would rather be ABSOLUTELY BROKE for 3 weeks than LITERALLY WASTE MY TIME saying "how can i help you today?" knowing I can't help at all.

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  3. Fucking YES! I found your blog by searching "how to get out of call centre work". In a couple of pages, you have reassured me that I have made the right decision to pack in my call centre "career" for good. I don't fucking care if I have to take a step back and earn less money elsewhere (I was paid quite well), and I am already aware of how difficult it is to find another job. However, I never have to deal with that fucking tit-wank bullshit anymore. For that - I am fucking ecstatic.

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  4. Brilliant! Your blog is spot on and I can relate to all of it! Carolyn Blunt is a naive person who needs to get a life and should have a go at working in a call centre to get the facts before giving approval of her children to become fodder in the call center world of bullshit. Hmm, there is something fundamentally wrong with a parent agreeing for her children to be subjected to potential anxiety and depression. Can she not read the hundreds of real stories people who work in call centres experience/have experienced or at least have the gumption to get off her idealistic cloud of perfect skills requirements and work in a call cerntre herself. Let's see if mummy is so upbeat and positive after the constraints of having to ask to go for a piss and then justify why you're 1 second late logging into your phone yet be expected to work in your OWN time if a call goes over the time you should have finished your shift and NOT get paid for it. Stupid bitch!

    Thank you for sharing this and your experiences too CCF.

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  5. If Carolyn Blunt had ever done hard time in a call centre she would spend every waking moment drilling it into her kids to never ever consider a call centre job. As a call centre mum, one of my proudest achievements was seeing my determination never to let my kids do this shit for a living play out in reality. Still, it's one of the few jobs where you get to jump ship knowing that no matter how dire the consequences, they're still way better than the unutterable crap you just left behind. Thanks so much for this blog, it's brightened many a dark day for me :-)

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    1. You are a great parent, I think all of us who have been tied to a call centre spend our lives helping others, starting with our children, in keeping them away from the horrors of call centre life.

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  6. your blog is epic, Caroline is as much as in touch with reality as the CEOS of city group those dick weeds that never heard of what is customer as kissing i mean service is , anyway call centers are modern day slavery Im working in one and everyday I go pretty much I see all the stereotypes that you mention in other articles and they are fucking true, sometimes i wonder if the fuck twats that designed all the rules of how to treat the customers are just a bunch people who were abused in their childhood and now thinking that deeming themselves less IS A GREAT WAY to make bussiness, the only people that heard of, that like doing or will fall into that mindset are masochists or if you like a more subtle definition of turning the other cheek while your being call a piece of thrash just because your manger told not to give a credit to a self entitled snowflake AKA customer who cant even pay a $50 dollar bill yet is threating you with hiring a team of lawyers LAW AND ORDER status then you must be jesuschrist or ghandi . I wonder if they design all this lovey dubey the client is the greatest shit in those black studed suits while being spanked in the ass with a whip , i swear some of this policies are just plain dumb. man fuck auschwitz i mean call centers.

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  7. It's even worse in mortgage since MMR. Customers are pieces of fucking shit.

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  8. Every statement made is so fucking on point its hilarious.
    We are trained to work our asses off .
    We work our asses off then they doc our pay and fuck with our bonuses adding some dumb fucking metric to stop us from getting any further bonuses.
    They add some stupid bullshit we gotta say to dumb fuck that is fight over a a miniscule amount that they ACTUALLY owe.
    The worst is that they create targets that are almost impossible to achieve and fucking place you on performance improvement plans and the like when you dont achieve them.
    shortly after this they will dismiss you for not reaching the company STANDARD.
    They made you do a shit job and fired you for doing it?
    Every call centre person especially those dumb fuck seniors/managers/Schmuck at the top needs tp fucking read this and gain a whiff of the shit they try and shove in avereyone elses faces.

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  9. EPIC and 100% correct. I worked in one of those hells and still have night mares after years getting outta it. I deeply appreiate what you are doing. Full support for you.

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    1. Recovering for years- love it. This is me in a nut shell, quit in 2014. It's 2017 & I still feel scarred. Maybe it's for life? I hope not! Also, 'hells'- yup, love your description. Well, all I got to say to them is this: "GO METRIC MY POO AND SEE MY DIET RESULTS: :)

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  10. I am working for a call center here in El Salvador, and it´s a fucking bullshit to see everyone hook to a machine to get yelled all day long I just cannot do this anymore.

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    1. Wow holy shit I didn't think they even had call centres there. I don't know how jobs or the economy fairs over in El Salvador, but if you can, get the fuck out. Your statement may be short but I can tell they've broken you.

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