Soft Skills Customer Service Training: Respect in the Workplace (2023)

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Soft Skills Customer Service Training: Respect in the Workplace (1)The landscape in the workplace has changed significantly in many ways over the last few decades, making training employees about respect in the workplace more important than ever. Once a measure of productivity has been measured quantitatively enough to make things, the output of goods in units. But now productivity is measured in another way, the objective is not the production of goods, but the number of customers served in a measured time. It's so easy to buy merchandise from different vendors that the defining characteristic that will ensure customer loyalty is how the customer remembers being treated. This shift in the business world sets customer service as a priority above many other success factors. The ability to work hard is now defined by a skill set not associated with traditional blue-collar business or white-collar trade associations. Instead, what has emerged is a unique set of jobs defined by training and developing a worker's soft skills.

Instill respect in the workplace with soft skills

The recipient interprets soft skills training as showing respect in the workplace. It's a form of customer service, which seems strange at first, as customer service is primarily associated with the people the workplace serves, but in any organization there are two groups of customers. There are internal customers (those who have relationships with employees that facilitate productivity) and external customers (those who have relationships with employees of the organization in order to receive a service or product). Soft skills training is a necessary component to ensure positive and productive interactions. Positive interactions facilitate ongoing workplace functions efficiently and seek approval from those outside the company. This process creates and maintains a good public relationship.

What does soft skills training involve?

Respect in the workplace is established by giving the person the opportunity to be heard, understood and feel validated by the experience. This pattern holds even when the experience didn't give the person what they might have been specifically asking for in the encounter. Respect in the workplace is not related to giving or withholding a service or good to an individual. Respect in the workplace is all about whether someone received the consideration they felt they owed as defined by the respect recipient. Audience interpretation is important. This understanding is the key defining factor in determining whether someone felt respected, especially if the company relies on third-party surveys for feedback on satisfaction with the service or process. It is possible to respect someone through courtesy and gestures and still make that person feel disrespected. This happens when people think they are getting along, but in reality they are not. Respect, because it has many different interpretations by people with self-centered perspectives, it can also seem to have many different meanings. The key to respect is an open secret as it doesn't have many different meanings but has many different ways of being conveyed to an individual. The individual who receives respect in the workplace must be able to recognize this message.

Training in Soft Skills and Communication

The ability to properly communicate respect in the workplace to someone requires good interpersonal skills training because it teaches workers in the workplace a standard definition of respect. An employer offering an interpersonal skills training course provides the following services to its employees: Establishes a common and shared understanding of what respect is and is not in the workplace Provides a well-communicated standard of expected employee behavior to other employees, including relationships in the workplace (internal customer service) Shows employees the expected pattern of interactions with external customers (buyers or recipients of goods or services) Provides employees with training, tools, and understanding of the concepts needed to enact the Proper Use of Software Skills Why is soft skills training necessary? Everyone has good manners! There is a common misconception that most people have a basic, shared understanding of gestures that convey respect. It is not true that everyone understands respect in the same way. Examples of minor behaviors that most people consider basic but are actually culturally conditioned include:

  • speaker spacing
  • visual contact
  • voice tom
  • Posture
  • Deference
  • Titles
  • Sex or gender assumptions
  • Way of speaking
  • How to decline or deny a request
  • How to open a dialog line
  • How to end a conversation
  • Control of an interaction
  • De-escalation of a changed person

There are many aspects of soft skills training that can be used to offset negative associations of cultural bias.

Examples of misunderstandings about Soft Skills in different cultures

As an example from the list above, let's consider eye contact between speakers. Depending on the environment in which someone was raised and the culture that established the norms of deference in a hierarchy, the amount of eye contact made can determine whether an encounter shows respect in the workplace. In some cultures, it is disrespectful to maintain prolonged eye contact, but in other cultures, lack of eye contact is disrespectful. In Japan, for example, eye contact is considered rude. In the United States, the lack of eye contact is considered impolite, abnormal and rude. Lack of eye contact is such a precedent for normal interactions that lack of eye contact is considered an identifier of a social communication disorder. If you take a worker from an office in California and drop him off at an office inJapan, it would be all too easy for the American worker to offend the Japanese worker if they didn't understand the cultural differences that shape respect in the workplace. Another example is the space between individuals and how the speaker uses it. The space between the speakers determines the closeness of the relationship in the US, getting too close to someone can be perceived as aggressive or unwanted. The United States is associated with space. However, in other countries where space is not available, people are used to being much closer together without the perception of inappropriate aggression, or may even need more space depending on their cultural rules! The study of space and its impact on relationships is called proxemics. People in Saudi Arabia have a very different definition of respect than someone in Argentina, for example. These are just two examples of differences. Conveying respect is not universally understood, but it can be taught in a cultural setting, such as a corporate or work setting!

How to bridge the cultural gap and convey respect

When you understand that the definition of respect is shaped by culture, that conveying respect in the workplace is a matter of overcoming cultural barriers, it becomes easy to see the solution. Since respect is conveyed not only in words but also in non-verbal language, the best way to bridge the linguistic divide is to teach people entering the workplace cultural expectations in the workplace. Teach the language of respect as it is spoken in the workplace. Customer service training is a necessary tool to teach workers that respect in the workplace is a high priority for the company. Respect makes people feel valued and validated, improves morale, and associates the workplace with positive feelings in a person's mind. Teach a common language of respect and set the expectation that everyone deserves respect within the culture of a company or organization and theemployee retentionit will be safer.

Training in soft skills and its impact on the cost to the company

Training employees on how to be respectful through both verbal and non-verbal methods requires an investment of time. This time investment is worth the opportunity cost to the company, especially if the company has difficulty retaining employees or has poor public relations. Employee retention is often considered a cost of doing business. Some companies have such high turnover, such as call center environments, that business operations run as if the attrition is so high that constant training and hiring takes place every year. It is normal and expected that some seasonal hires will increase the ability to operate during a period of time such as holidays. Gaining additional employees is usually measured in profits high enough to keep the company going through downturns. For example, before Black Friday in the US, which occurs after Thanksgiving in November, the holiday sales start to persuade people to shop before Christmas in December. It is clear that it will be necessary to increase the staff of call centers that operate in the financial sector, such as credit and bank cards, to maintain adequate service levels for answering telephone calls and processing transactions.

The normal, non-seasonal work environment

However, for other call centers that exist to provide a service to individuals, such as relaying information, handling account inquiries, activating a utility service, or selling an item that is not seasonally specific, these environments must maintain staff levels throughout. the process. year, regardless of seasonal influence. People leave their call center jobs because the call center culture can be very demoralizing and stressful. Call center metrics and constant hiring mean employees feel disposable and unimportant compared to the statistical demands of a service-oriented industry. To a lesser extent, the same effect can be seen in other work environments, such as cafeterias with 30-second timers in drive-thru windows. Any environment that has service criteria measured in performance metrics can discourage employees and make them feel disrespected. Quantitative performance metrics become the yardstick by which employee behaviors are measured, leaving employees feeling that the most important aspect of the job is how quickly they can speak and convey information without making the caller nervous.wait. , using the call center example. When the call center employee calls the support line for help, and the support line must also have a minimum call time, the call can be short and rude. Every person in this workplace interaction is concerned about time and how it will affect their performance measurement.

Quality of experience metric

There is another metric called quality in the workplace. This is often measured by searches with a range of numbers (1-5) or (1-10). Most companies use it to measure customer satisfaction and surveys have such a detrimental effect on the employee that employees ask people to rate them out of 10 so they don't get fired. This effect occurs with service personnel in restaurants, sales representatives in stores, and call center employees, to name a few. Despite the impact of quality on an employee's ability to hold a job, most companies don't take the time to train these employees in interpersonal skills. An employee who specializes in soft skills might not have to ask someone the question to give a 10 because the employee's natural interaction would be so confident and adept at handling the interaction that they wouldn't need to.

How to define soft skills

Soft skills largely shape interactions between internal and external customers. Words that describe soft skills include:

  • Diplomacy
  • Tap
  • Empathy
  • Understanding
  • Useful
  • perceptual
  • Sage for non-verbal cues
  • Able to calm others
  • Good at controlling interaction to minimize negative impact
  • Ability to direct energy towards good conflict resolution.

Where to find resources to teach and improve soft skills

service skillsis an organization that provides learning materials for companies to incorporate better soft skills into the corporate culture. Serviceskills excels at understanding customer service and also at providing the training needed to pass that understanding on to others. For a demonstration of how Serviceskills combines soft skills and customer service training to improve the work environment, check out thefree demoof the company's services. Serviceskills helps companies create a corporate culture that instills an attitude of mutual respect and consideration as key components of the workplace. Incorporating soft skills into the workplace will boost morale, help retain employees, foster goodwill, and enhance shared understandings in communications between internal and external customers. Try the free demo today.

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