Hiring for the Best Attitude – Hiring for Customer Service
As managers, one of the tasks we face is hiring employees with the right combination of “attitude” and experience. Interviews are often scheduled at our busiest times. We normally do not have a very long time to get to know the applicant well enough to say whether or not they are teachable, courteous and technical enough to fit into the organization.
Here are some thoughts on the hiring process:
Ask the applicant to define customer service. Many seasoned Customer Service Reps, for example, have trouble with this too. Many do not know the strategic reason for a call center or the exact role of the position they are being interviewed for. The right answer of course will vary, but you will discover whether or not they fully understand what is expected of them in this role.
Develop role play scenarios for the prospective employee to handle during the interview. Ask him or her to explain how they have dealt with a difficult person in the past. Have them tell you what it was about this person that bothered them.
Next, have them talk through their approach to handling this kind person. Look for their expressions and tone of their voice. This will give you a feeling they are suited for customer service.
Hire new talent. Experienced new hires are great because they take less time to train and they fit in; but experience can sometimes come at a price. Experienced reps could be burnt out or carrying extra baggage from their previous employer. Candidates may put on their best face during the interview. Seasoned candidates have the most experience with putting on this face. So look deep to find the face behind the mask.
Hiring a person because they have a good attitude is not the only solution to excellent customer service. When you have chosen a candidate, you may find they do not have the work ethic or technical ability they portrayed and make the customer experience less than outstanding. The key to providing excellent Customer Service is to hire employees with a passion for Customer Service.