The best call centre consultants are like doctors - they look beneath the skin of client to determine the best way to sell him a product.
Over 200 thousand Poles work in 1500 call centres in Poland. Call centres get commissions from companies that do not want to have their own hotlines or salesmen. One employee of call centre can sometimes work for several client companies, switching from one to another between the calls. They sell mobile phone services, FCMG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) such as cosmetics, provide hotline, or vindicate the debt.
Nowadays western corporations use Polish call centres more because they appreciate the smaller cultural difference, with only 10% more expense comparing to the call centres in India.
The consultants must work according to the specific rules. Marta, call centre employee has such productivity rules: 19 talks per hour for 7 hours minus 30 minutes for lunch, which she can have the earliest 2 hours 40 minutes after the beginning of her shift, or the latest 2 hours 40 minutes before the end of her shift. She also has 20 minutes for being "not ready" which she can use for anything, like going to toilet or stretching her knees. When she uses "not ready" minutes, she starts her stop watch, which counts every second because her productivity percentage is being lowered if she uses more than 20 minutes. And noone will give her additional productivity points when someone calls just because he is bored and wants to have a chat, or she gets a call from pervert that breaths heavily in his handset for two minutes. She is not supposed to stop any conversation even if she has to listen to insults.
She was taught at the training that there are four types of clients in the world: red - talks with a high voice and feels superior because he pays high bills, that's usually businessmen or lawyers; blue - medium bills, looks out for flaws, professor; green - that's a client that always says sorry, happy that finally got connection; yellow - has a prepaid phone, always unhappy, that's usually mothers who bought their kids a phone and now child has blocked a PIN number. The worst thing is that after each conversation she must propose a "Texas" package, asking the exact words "do you sometimes happen to call more than your bundled minutes?" It's a greek tragedy; if she doesn't propose the package, she will have less productivity, if she does, but the client was hard, he will score her "aspects" with four zeroes on his phone's keyboard.
(text by Edyta Gietka/Polityka Magazine)