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You never know where you’ll find inspiration. Recently I went to visit a call center in Hermasillo, Mexico for a company I’m working with. It’s called Listen Up Espanol, which handles up-sells on inbound phone calls for direct response companies– to increase revenue among people who place orders over the phone. It’s an impressive operation in its culture and technology. First the culture. This place so strongly believes in its values that it paints them on the walls – literally. All over the bright, colorful walls of the place are the words of their company credo, which emphasizes customer focus, personal growth, results etc. What an interesting way to bring a company’s values to life: bring it into the physical surroundings of the work environment. (The picture, taken on my old Blackberry, doesn’t do it justice).
Their culture seems to be more than just words: some reps on the phone were standing up and energetically talking as if the caller were right there in front of them. The phone interaction looked like an in-person sales meeting: good eye contact, lots of smiles and emphatic hand gestures. These are engaged people. Interestingly, the nearly 600 reps working the phones have video and interactive modules on their desktops to reinforce their training and motivate them in their work. The modules are created in-house by a mini creative agency: a few hipsters who look like they belong in the East Village of New York City. They turn call scripts into high concept imagery. And the company values are reinforced in these desktop modules. Looks like it’s working. The lesson here is that there can be very creative ways to reinforce and infuse a team with a company’s values.
On the technical side, it’s a paperless facility that provides clients with real time reporting on results. They work with the LiveOps technology platform, a leading call center infrastructure that has processed 270 million talk minutes. Data security is taken very seriously: their U.S. based data center uses two kinds of motion detectors, biometrics, surveillance cameras and 24/7 armed security staff.
And there it is: inspiration from a Mexican Call Center.