The Best CX is Created by the Best EX


“I hate my job. If they don’t care, why should I?”  

That was the response I received from my daughter’s friend, Jake, after I asked him how he liked his new job as a customer service representative for a large national retailer.   I felt bad, as I had convinced him to try a career in Call Centers since he didn’t have a college degree and had asked me for career advice.  

I had started on the phones myself and knew that Call Centers are still one of the few places you can earn your way up the ladder without having a degree.  He was a likable, bright, and positive young man who genuinely enjoyed helping people so I thought a career in Call Center would be a perfect path for him.

When I asked what he meant about them not caring, he said that over 90% of his calls were irate callers due to the same issue; broken promises caused by lack of communication and coordination between the retail store and the service center.  One would promise a customer something that the other couldn’t deliver.  He said he’d tried to speak to management about it, but he doesn’t think they listened because they never got back to him, and nothing has changed. 

He said, “So I don’t even try much anymore. I’m just trying to get through the calls” while he’s actively looking for another job.

Jake’s experience is just one real-life example of what recent market studies by Gallup and others have clearly proven in their statistics:  A great employee experience (EX) is THE fundamental foundation to creating a great customer experience (CX).

These studies show that companies with high EX and high employee engagement enjoy the following bottom-line results for compared to companies with lower engagement:

Increased Revenue

  • 21% Increase in Profitability

  • 26% Greater Year-Over-Year Increase in Annual Revenue

Increased Customer Satisfaction

  • 233% Higher Customer Loyalty Rates

  • 10% Improved Customer Experience (CX) 

  • Ability to Charge a Premium of up to 16% More

Increased Efficiency

  • 41% Lower Absenteeism

  • 59% Less Turnover

The Challenge: A Disconnect in Engagement

A recent study showed that 84% of contact center leaders believe they have improved their approach to employee engagement over the past year.  What’s concerning is that Gallup’s 2023 State of the Global Workplace Report and other recent studies report that a staggering 69% of employees in the U.S. and Canada are not actively engaged or are actively disengaged at work, despite these best efforts by contact center leaders. 

Clearly, there’s a long way to go to create an improved employee experience. The biggest challenge is that only 22% of companies understand the drivers behind their employees’ disengagement, highlighting a critical gap in awareness.

The Cause: Identifying the Missing Elements

These research studies pinpoint several elements that have seen the most decline and contribute to employee disengagement. These include:

  • Connection to the Mission or Purpose of the Company

  • Clarity of Expectations

  • Opportunities to Learn and Grow

  • Opportunities to Do What Employees Do Best

  • Feeling Cared About at Work

The Good News: Time-Tested Programs Are Now Available To Help

There are a lot of programs on the market but very few were developed iteratively over time by seasoned industry leaders who’ve faced these same challenges in employee engagement.

The C’s of Success™ is a scalable program developed by Adam Boelke, an award-winning former VP with over 30 years of experience overseeing global call center operations for Fortune 500 companies and others and provides a proactive approach proven to create a culture of engagement that delivers bottom-line results.  

The crux of this method was published by the leading best practices organization, the Corporate Executive Board (now Gartner) in their annual white paper “Managing Highly Effective Employees,” and includes effective, in-depth strategies to help you create an intentional culture in the 7 “Pillars” he’s found necessary to support a culture of engagement.  They are:

  • Clarify: Mission, Vision, Values, Foundational Beliefs & Strategy

  • Connect & Commit: Transition from Employee Awareness to Ownership

  • Calibrate: Alignment of Expectations, Activities and Goals

  • Care & Camaraderie: Creating a Culture of Caring and Teamwork

  • Continuously Improve: Creating a Culture of Innovation and Development

  • Communicate: Building Trust Through Effective & Consistent Communication

  • Celebrate: Meaningful Recognition & Rewards

Adam Boelke is a CCNG Academy member helping fellow members and leaders optimize call center performance and establish a culture of engagement that drives bottom-line results.

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