Contact center: the importance of emotional intelligence. Contact center agents are, as you know, one of the most important assets of a company for a very simple reason: they are the first touch point with users. On this basis, it is to be assumed that this professional profile must have a series of attitudes and aptitudes that, together, will define how they communicate with clients when interacting with them.
Us, people, are human beings with emotions and, as such, it is difficult for us to isolate emotions in the work environment. In a sector like ours, where the contact center agent is in charge of establishing that relationship with customers from the very beginning, a fundamental concept in interpersonal relationships comes into play: emotional intelligence in the contact center. Do you want to know more? Keep reading!
Contact center: What is emotional intelligence?
Before delving into the subject, it is necessary, first of all, to understand what we mean when we talk about emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to perceive, express, understand and manage emotions when making decisions.
A concept that is not new: the psychologists Howard Gardner (with his theory of multiple intelligences) and Daniel Goleman (who delved much deeper into emotional intelligence) already introduced us to a concept that speaks not so much of the alteration of emotions but, rather, how to react to different situations in which emotions are involved.
Contact center: characteristics of emotional intelligence
That Emotional Intelligence (EI) is very important in a contact center is something that we are clear about. Now, can we be able to recognize the characteristics that people with a high degree of emotional intelligence have? Some of them are, for example:
- Ability to analyze own emotions.
- Authenticity and honesty: people who have developed this type of intelligence are aware of their feelings, they express them and do not repress them.
- Self-criticism: People with high emotional intelligence are able to recognize mistakes and be self-critical about their actions.
- Empathy: they pay attention to the emotions of the rest of the group (this is very important when we talk about customer service) and empathize with their emotions.
- They meet new people but, above all, they know how to surround themselves with people who contribute to them. That is, they try to stay out of toxic relationships.
Emotional intelligence: why is it so important in a contact center?
Now, bearing in mind that contact center agents face situations in which they also have to deal with angry customers on a daily basis, emotional intelligence plays a very important role in knowing how to manage the different emotions of users and manage to make them feel that the customer service is attentive and 100% personalized.
The importance of emotional intelligence in a contact center and its role in managing certain situations and empathizing with the customer in this era of digital transformation can be measured in aspects such as:
- Adaptability: that is, the ability for agents to take control of certain situations that can go outside the script for incoming calls or communication through other digital channels (social media, email, etc.).
- Relationship with customers: on a daily basis, contact center agents will be in touch with users who do not need empathy with them and others who, however, need to receive more confidence from those who are trying to solve their problem. Humanization, as we have said many times, is very important to get communication off to a good start and build a relationship that is expected to last.
- Ability to analyze = be a better listener. We said it a few lines above: an emotionally intelligent person will be able to analyze aspects during the conversation to know how the user is feeling. This will make it possible to anticipate her/his needs and, in this way, shorten the problem resolution time.
Software for customer service EVOLUTION
The emotional intelligence of agents must be complemented with contact center software. For a very simple reason: to provide them with tools that allow them to carry out their work in a simple and intuitive way. This way, they can focus on delivering a memorable customer experience.
Do you want to know how ICR Evolution can help you? Request a demo of our omnichannel contact center software!