Is “Emotional Intelligence” relevant to the modern contact centre?


The concept of “emotional intelligence” or EQ has been doing the rounds since the 80’s when Daniel Goleman first published his influential work Emotional Intelligence – Why it can matter more than IQ.
However unlike many other behavioural theories this concept continues to gain momentum and appears to be entirely relevant in ensuring success in a modern contact centre.
The crux of the theory is the idea that if you are self-aware of your emotional triggers you can better manage your own emotional response and ultimately build relationships by adapting your style to the emotional state of others. (Pardon the gross oversimplification).
The simple truth is there is a clear link between a person’s EQ and how successful they will be within a contact centre environment particularly in terms of:

  • Their ability to handle difficult and stressful interactions
  • Their ability to quickly assess a customer’s situation and adapt accordingly
  • Being able to work within and positively influence a close-knit team

A key difference between EQ and IQ is that the skills required can in many respects can be trained. These can include using positive and dynamic vocabulary, understanding and responding with genuine empathy, being able to deal with customers in a mutually beneficial assertive style, and being able to build rapport in a way that is appropriate to each customer interaction.
In fact ensuring your contact centre team respond to your customers in an emotionally intelligent manner is vital in delivering an excellent customer experience and will impact the relationships your customers have with your brand.
At Ember we offer an approach to training closely aligned to our principles of offering solutions to our customers that are measured and impactful. We work with our clients to find solutions that are innovative and engaging for their teams and always focused on delivering an enhanced customer experience that drives value. If you need help your team’s EQ, please contact Paul Mackenzie, Director of Ember Services on 0207 871 9797.