Customer Experience News & Trends

Do this and you might as well have smoked a joint before work

You probably do something at work several times a day that lowers your IQ more than smoking pot or losing a night of sleep.

If you let yourself get distracted by incoming e-mail, text messages or calls you don’t have to take, your IQ drops 10 points, an Institute of Psychiatry study found.

Multi-tasking can make customer contact center professionals act dumb, researchers say. What’s more, switching from task to task – say finishing post-call work and reading e-mail as it comes in – makes people less productive, not more efficient, other research has found.

In contact centers, customers need and expect focused attention (even if they don’t give you all of theirs – because they’re often guilty of calling, texting and eating at the same time, too!)

You may think you can’t stop multi-tasking: How will I get it all done?! But people who’ve tried it for a week or two found that everything got done because they were so focused on the work at hand, it got done faster and better.

So try some of these tactics to stop multi-tasking and stay focused on customers and work:

  1. Turn off the alternative. If you have to be on the phone, turn off your e-mail program and cell phone that receives text messages. If you’re on e-mail, send calls to voice mail. If you’re writing, filing paperwork or meeting with people, turn off all the electronics.
  2. Set shorter deadlines. Plan shorter meetings. Cut project deadlines in half. Get back to customers hours or days before you promise. The shortened time frame will force you to be focused.
  3. Set a schedule. Post the times you’ll respond to e-mail and text messages, answer and/or return calls, be available to meet, work quietly behind closed doors. Once you stick to those times, co-workers won’t interrupt you (as much) and customers will know what to expect (although, they may demand differently – and you can adjust accordingly).

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