Customer Experience News & Trends

Coaches: Take the sting out of criticism

Criticism from the boss can sting – but it doesn’t have to leave a bruise. Here’s how to help agents improve without hurting their morale.

As leaders and coaches you sometimes have to criticize agents’ work. It’s understandable – even expected – in a contact center.

But you don’t have to make it tough to handle. To take the sting out of criticism:

  • Get to the point. Managers often try small talk before getting to the point. It just postpones the inevitable. Cut to the chase in a private talk.
  • Make a link. Link agents’ actions to the consequences. Example: Instead of saying, “Your paperwork is sloppy,” try, “Mistakes in your orders caused three late shipments.” It helps agents see how their behavior affects others.
  • Check for understanding. Stay with agents until you’re sure they understand what was discussed and their next step in the right direction. Ask them to repeat what you covered, and agree to a date for a follow-up meeting.

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