Services manual - Ufone Frontline staff serves as the backbone of an organization and pave way to shaping customer perceptions. Therefore, relevant training programs should be devised to make employees efficient so that they enable two way communication. This manual consists of the following basic topics: 1. Personal Management • • • Hygiene Body language Appearance

2. Emotional Labour • Anger Management (Dealing with difficult customers)

3. Interpersonal Skills • • Interaction Personal/interpersonal conflicts

4. Time Management 5. Role Conflict Personal management Being a part of the front line staff means interacting with the customers. Many times a customer judges the firm by their employees who are present in front of the. Hence, those employees should look their best and act their best in order to make a good impression on the firm and keep them coming back for more. There are many factors that are included in personal management of firm. The ones that apply to ufone are listed below.

Personal hygiene: It is important for the frontline employees to be as neat as possible or else it will create disgust in the customers. The most important factor included in personal hygiene is grooming. And employee should be properly groomed with a proper hair cut and hair style. Hair should not be falling all over an employee’s face as then it makes a bad impression on the customer. Also unkempt beard also makes a bad impression, so an employee should shave properly before coming to work. Nails should be properly cut as when coming in contact with the customers, he should see proper clean hands instead of dirty ones. Women should avoid makeup over dose as that does not look proper when they are in contact with different types of people, some may be allergic or some may not like that look. Oral hygiene should also be taken care off since frontline employees need to talk to the customers, bad breath or dirty teeth will cause customer disgust. Appearance: Employees should look their best when they are dealing with customers. Their clothes should be clean and properly ironed. Everyone should have one look that will give a sort of unity feeling in the environment. Different color of clothes should be avoided; same color will make a better impression. Shoes are one thing that every one notices, they are the thing that people also judge the other person by, and therefore employees should wear clean and proper style of shoes. Body language: Body language can convey a lot of messages to the person in front. It is important to keep a good form of body language that tell the customer that he is being listened too and make him feel welcome. It was noticed that employees at Ufone branch did not make any eye contact or did not smile at the customer they were dealing with. They appeared to be obsessed with their computers. That mistake should be avoided. Employees should make proper eye contact with the customer and smile while speaking to them. He should greet the person properly and make him feel warm and welcomed. While sitting, the employee should not slouch; he should appear relaxed but sit straighter. Composure and posture of an employee should be maintained at all times, it should make them look confident. Interaction:

While interacting with customers, employees should speak properly. If a customer is speaking in English, the best way to reply would be in English as well. An employee should be well spoken and should know what he is saying to the customer. The employee should be friendly to their customers, even if they are dealing with difficult ones. They should apologize to the customer is their work has taken too long. A proper greeting and a proper goodbye is a must as that adds impression. Frontline employees are many times put under a lot of stress because of their customers so they should be well trained in stress management. They should be able to handle the stress and remain calm at all times. It is important for an employee to make more eye contact and smile to the customer. They should not be as engrossed in their computer as that makes the customer feel ignored. The employee should always listen to the customer and reply politely back to them even when they are dealing with difficult customers. After the employee’s case has been handled, they should say a proper goodbye and wish them a good day. Training session: Employees should be trained once every month on personal management and they should also be evaluated once every month so the company knows where they stand with their employee. If there is any difficult employee or the management thinks that there is something personal that should be dealt with in private with an employee, then it should be done on one to one basis. The best way of training employees on personal management would be by:

Visual displays: in this different pictures and a power point presentation should be shown to the employees about how they should deal with personal management matter. This is an effective way of getting the message across to employees.

One on one training: employees should be called one by one for the training session and should be told everything there is to know about personal management. Also different employees may have different habits, these could be dealt with in these one on one session as more ground can be covered that way on personal basis.

Role playing: when in training two employees should be asked to do role playing exercise in front of everyone. Every employee would have a turn in doing so. This will help to


understand the customers point of view and will help bring faster changes in the attitudes of the employees. Evaluation Every month the employees should be evaluated. Customers should be encouraged to fill out the customer evaluation and suggestion form. Employee of the month should also be chosen on this basis as this will encourage motivation. Frontline employees themselves should be asked to evaluate their fellow frontline employees and the management should be asked to do the same. In the end after all the evaluation has been done, it should be decided what needs to be added in the training session and what needs to be focused on the next time around. Helping Frontline Staff to Present a Positive Face (combating emotional labor) Arlie Hochschild created the term 'emotional labor' in 1983 to describe the things that service workers do that goes beyond physical or mental duties. Showing a genuine concern for customers' needs, smiling, and making positive eye contact are all critical to a customer's perception of service quality. These types of activities, when they're essential to worker performance, are emotional labor. When you have to face angry clients, or people who are usually unpleasant, emotional labor becomes a major challenge. A large part of that challenge comes from the need to hide your real emotions, and continue to 'smile and nod your head,' even when receiving negative or critical feedback. Implications for Workers When you are involved in emotional labour, you need to control your feelings in order to fulfill the goals and expectations of your organization. You can either express only your positive feelings or hide or manage your negative feelings. When people are dealing with negative emotions, they tend to do one of the following: • • Show emotion they don't really feel Hide emotion they really do feel


Create an appropriate emotion for the situation

There are two emotional labor techniques: Surface acting - You fake, or pretend to have, an emotion by using unnatural and artificial body language and verbal communication. Smiling and using a soft tone of voice help you show emotion that you don't feel, or hide emotion that you do feel. Deep acting - You control your internal emotions, directing them to believe that you actually are happy, and enjoying the interaction with the other person. Rather than feel like you're pretending, you convince yourself you're not experiencing a negative reaction. How to overcome issues with emotional labour: A team of management personnel should be made who will act as counselors. Any employee who is suffering from a problem can approach, through a hotline number, any member of the team and express their problems. This will reduce the anxiety and stress level of the employee as he/she will have a platform to lighten their heart from their problems. Anger Management Difficult customers are a nightmare of every frontline employee. Everyone knows the popular term that "the customer is always right." Unfortunately, the most difficult ones make it a point to rub this in your face. But there are tips for dealing with difficult customers you can follow to keep your head cool and avoid conflict with the customers. Some frontline employees make the mistake of aggravating the situation whenever a difficult customer makes himself or herself known. But these tips for dealing with difficult customers will help you be in control. 1) Get to the root of the problem Ask the customer how you can assist him or her. If the root of the problem is simple enough, don't say anything more that you know will upset the customer. Your goal is to solve the


problem and get away from the difficult customer as quickly as possible, without sacrificing your store's reputation. Difficult customers who leave with a bad experience often make it a point to spread bad word of mouth about it to other people. And you know how powerful word-of-mouth is and how fast it spreads. 2) Smile. It confuses people One of the best tips for dealing with difficult customers is smiling. Not only does it keep the situation from becoming too tense, it also helps you keep up a cool front. Being charming often alleviates the problem instantly. Warning: Be sensitive to people's emotions. A genuine smile is nice, but an insulting smile isn't. So do what you can to resolve an issue and accompany it with a smile. But don't smile while he's giving you a piece of his mind. You need to express your empathy, and not make them feel you're mocking them. 3) Offer a present One of the most effective tips for dealing with difficult customers is making sure they leave your store in a good mood. Ensure the customer that the mishap will not happen again. It's a small price to pay for a happy ending. The truth is, these types of customers are everywhere. And if you become rather difficult yourself, then the whole situation won't get anywhere. Follow these tips for dealing with difficult customers and you'll be alright. Perhaps next time, that consumer will have a change of heart. Chances are one person in a dispute is going to get angry or angry first. Try not to react to the anger. Stay focused on the problem and the solution. 2. If someone's anger is impeding your ability to do your job, transfer them to a manager or someone trained to work with angry people.


3. If you can't help a customer, give them options. The worst thing a customer can feel is victimized. 4. Accept that you may not have all the answers. Even if you think you know what the rules or parameters are, ask a higher up if you may do something differently for a customer. 5. Anger affects other people, so if you feel yourself getting affected by another person's anger, take a few deep breaths or stretch your body to get a little more oxygen going in order to try and gird yourself up against the anger. 6. If you are a customer, and you are not getting what you want, go to the next step -- a manager, a supervisor, etc. Often times, going over a stubborn employee's head (or their manager's head, too), will solve the problem. You may encounter someone very pleasant in an executive suite or office of the store One of the most essential management tool that front line employees should be well trained about and should have prior experience to is how to deal with anger while serving customer. Anger management is important because it could have a very positive impact on health and physical projection of the front line employees. When employees face Anger while at work, their physiological and biological activities are affected, accompanied by high blood pressure, heart beat rate etc. which affects the level of energy and vigor with which employees present themselves while at work. It important to understand that while at work, it is imminent that you (the employee) would face a substantial amount of customers who are dissatisfied with performance of the management at times. At times you might require to take a challenge to calm down the “unhappy” customer at work and ensure that he gets satisfied; this is a very difficult yet important task. There are some very important steps that you should consider while performing frontline duties to ensure that you get a right impression of your firm/organization and in the end ensure customer satisfaction. Some very essential points include:


1. Don’t take responses personally: it is important that you realize that if you encounter an angry customer, he or she is angry on the management or the organization that you work for. Hence, you should try not to take comments personally. 2. Honesty is the best Policy: it is important that you realize the importance of being honest. Hence if the organization is wrong or at fault, it is better to accept it and find a solution rather than further argument. This would help you satisfy customer and retain them in the long run. 3. Decide the implications based on your actions: Handling difficult customers can be challenging, but it's worth mastering the negotiation skills required to win their loyalty. When they're satisfied with the way you handle their complaints, they can also be among your biggest sources of business. And since customers are the lifeblood of any business, the more you can rely on regular customers and referrals then the less time and money you'll have to spend to get new business.

Four Things to Avoid while at work:

1. Don't make threats: it is important that you as a representative of the organization should not be harsh or rude to your customer no matter what happens. Being calm, helpful and supportive is something that you should keep as your motto. 2. Don't argue: It is important that you do not argue with the customer at any point. 3. Don't raise your voice: It is important that you do not raise your voice or shout in front of the customer since it is inappropriate behavior. 4. Don’t make the customer feel wrong: It is important that you remain in line with the customer opinions and suggest him/her various options rather than portraying an impression/image that the customer is wrong.

Time Management

Time management is not an inborn skill, but can be learnt easily through practice. In Ufone, you can differentiate yourself by your ability to handle information and manage your time. So here are 4 tips to make you better at managing your work: 1. Do the most important thing first.

Assist the customers before attending to anything else. If you have to make a customer wait due to some problem, then apologize for the delay. The first thing to do when you enter the office is to make a to-do list in order to organize the day with prioritized tasks. Keep this list accessible so that you are reminded of your tasks throughout the day. 2. Be proactive. We don't have problems finishing projects, we have problems starting them. Take the initiative in activities or duties and other will help you out. Once the solution has been started there are many to help you, plus an individual becomes self motivated to do so. 3. Don't leave work sitting on your table. The ability to quickly process information and turn it into actions is one of the most developing skills of the professional world today. Organize your work in files so that you can easily access them when required. Similarly, organize your emails in folders. If the message needs more thought, move it to your to-do list. 4. Multitasking is good. While serving one customer, try to fulfill the customer needs with multitasking. For eg. If the customer is looking for the payment of a bill, tell the customer about the new packages and start off quickly by the mode of payment of the customer. Activities Time management activities include a situation when you have to handle customers in a certain amount of time. And there is a specific PCT (per customer time) that you need to maintain in order to complete all the customers in the duration. Trainings would have to be done on a regular basis to keep employees in practice and maintain a regular quality assurance.


Games should be played in which employees are given a fixed amount of time and they have to make quick decisions along with manage their time. More common and practical example would be an activity that has the combination of team work and time management. Its called a “Rally”, in which group of 2 or 3s are setup among the employees. Then certain tasks are given with time duration and stop over and pit stops as in a real car race. But this one is on foot, with each stops having clues for the next game and stops. After a certain amount of games and stops the team reaches the final pit stop. All the teams start off together, the first team to arrive at the pit stop wins. During the rally, all the games are difficult that require different type of skills, some may require 2 people to work together to complete it, while others are more of strategy and time management activities. But the team that has the best team work and time management are determined to accomplish and win the race.


Interpersonal Skills Reducing the Cycle of Mediocrity in Frontline Staff: Activity: Ufone should develop a response on an ongoing basis according to the customer feed they get. This could be done with the help of placing a drop box at their service centers, creating blogs and collecting suggestions and feedback from their website. Ufone can track call volume trends and work on improving them based on what the customers say. This can later be inculcated to the front line staff in order to enhance the level of service provided and customer dealings could be improved. Response: Based on the input, Ufone can plan a response accordingly. Other than the frontline staff, they can calculate hold time which would in turn be a leading indicator to calculate how the response is changing and whether customers’ queries could be addressed and solved on the phone and or whether customers have to come in person to the service centers. Also the call abandon rate can be devised. Back log: This is the work in progress of an organization calculated in volume. Any task aging will be a bad indicator of jobs being done and would have a negative impact. However, this can be improved.

Retention Program: In order to have employees deal with customers in a lively way, it is important that they are self motivated. For this, retention programs can be devised. Rewards can be planned to lower down labour turnover so that increasing amounts of investment need not be made for training of new employees. Implementation can be done in the form of: • Employee of the month award and displaying the best employee’s picture in service outlets

• Special discounts for front line employees (the employees will be given credit for their phone line or if they are on post paid, then they will get a percentage discount on their bill) • Collecting all queries and then having a face to face discussion session with front line employees and management (the customer queries which are received and their proper responses will be discussed as a one on one session where one management personnel will be the customer and the front line staff member will answer his/her query) • Entrusting front line staff with responsibility and accepting their feedback as highly valuable because they are the ones who directly deal with customers. • Training employees in a way that they influence a purchase decision for packages and making them being able to do cross selling. . Role Conflict Frontline conflict takes place between the two bosses and the customer. For a telecom industry, it is very difficult to satisfy excessive customer demands. The employees have to believe in what the company is offering is right, however the organization/client conflict would be greatest when the employees think Ufone is wrong and decide to accommodate the customer instead. Various customers would need to be tackled at the same time, however, the conflict would be high when customers come with incompatible expectations and have to be satisfied at the same time. This could take turns with one customer taking additional time. This is the reason why time management is essential for meeting deadlines. Working simultaneously would be an issue, hence job specialization is important. To overcome role conflict: • • There should be proper job descriptions Managers and subordinates should understand each others’ responsibilities


Colleagues should understand and respect each other

Team Building 4Cs by Matthew Richter The organization can take help of Thiagi's Hello Game which would make the employees more interactive and willing to learn as much as possible from the training program. Customer satisfaction can be used as the training topic. The number of participants could be any, while teams are being formed. Time: 30 minutes to 1 hour Supplies
• • • •

Timer Whistle Paper Markers

Preparation Take four papers with these topics
• • • •

What are the components of customer satisfaction, What are the characteristics of great customer satisfaction What are the Challenges for achieving great customer satisfaction What are the characters involved for customer satisfaction

Flow Brief the participants. As a manger explain what is to be gathered by employees related to customer satisfaction and what they think about it. It should be jotted down on the papers provided.


Define terms. Define what is meant by each of the terms mentioned.

Components are the part of the business concept, for instance, taking feedback from employees. Characteristics would be the features associated with the telecom company. For example, the speed of service which the service is provided or queries satisfied. Challenges are the hurdles associated with the service, such as signal issues on special occasions and inability to satisfy customers. Characters are people are people who would be associated with Ufone, for instance, front line employees in service centers.

Now the teams are to be divided into FOUR equal sized teams. Brief the teams: Allot each team a different C and ask them to jot down points related to each. In this way they can discuss certain valuable points that were not tapped before. Give each team 10 minutes to survey the room and gather points for each C. Later on they should all be made to sit together and brainstorm what’s collected and data analyses according to it.


Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful