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The GCS Blog

The GCS Blog

Helpful information on Contact Centers, Customer Service and People Skills

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Best Practices  |  Call Center Tips  |  Client Relationships  |  Communication  |  Contact Center Consulting  |  Customer Service  |  Education & Learning  |  Increase Profits  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Performance  |  Team Building

Real Solutions for a Municipal Turnaround: How to Make Customers Happy, Engage Employees AND Stay Under Budget

Managing a customer call or service center is a lot about managing the numbers. Both the macro ones – how many calls, how many agents. And the micro ones -  how many calls can one agent take on, how many calls can one agent take on happily.

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GCS News  |  Leadership

Attention. Thank you. Forward March

Did you know that in the 1940s the American Auto Industry did not make any cars for almost three years? During World War II the auto makers turned their assembly lines into wartime producers of military equipment. Over 40,000 tanks, 100,000 planes and dozens of ships were created in the name of freedom. The auto makers turned their talents from cars in January of 1942 to producing military equipment in April of that year. It was a transformation that changed the world.

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Outsourcing Guide

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The Complete Call Center Outsourcing Guide helps you plan for better outsource success. Get this guide and subscribe to our blog.

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Best Practices  |  Employee Engagement  |  General  |  Inside a Contact Center  |  Leadership

Coaches are Just Teachers Trying to Help Us Win

When asked “Who was the most influential person in your life growing up?” the most common answers (after “my mom” or “my dad”) are usually a teacher or a coach. At GCS, we refer to the most influential people in our CMRs’ business lives as Supervisors but, aren’t they really teachers or coaches? They work daily with CMRs on presentation skills, right? At GCS, we are changing the titles for “the most influential people in our company.

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Call Center Tips  |  Leadership  |  Marketing

Marketing to bank customers has gone from sky high to ground zero...

Our clients need a hug. That’s the feeling I got at the conference in Phoenix this week. The ABIA is the industry association for insurance carriers that market through banks. Over the last two years, marketing to bank customers has gone from sky high to ground zero with almost all marketing being suspended. So, with this suspension in marketing, the conference networking was around two main subjects: a disdain for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and where we go from here. A couple of weeks ago we wrote about the CFPB and their interest in reducing fraud and deceptive marketing to bank customers. We continue to get requests from our clients to verify sales and document our procedures. To date, we can celebrate our A+, top grade response from our clients and their clients.

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ABIA  |  Conferences  |  GCS Culture  |  Growth  |  Leadership

First Impressions

The newest member of our sales team, Jason Sterns, recently attended the 2012 American Bankers and Insurance Association Annual Convention with President and CEO Greg Alcorn. Jason was kind enough to tell us his first impressions of GCS while attending this event and meeting some of our valued past and present clients.

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Best Practices  |  Call Center Tips  |  Communication  |  Employee Engagement  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Motivation  |  Productivity  |  Strategic Planning  |  Team Building  |  Time Management  |  Tips & Tricks

Tips for Collaborating in the Workplace

In his famous one-hit-wonder “Ice, Ice, Baby,” Vanilla Ice tells us to “Stop, collaborate and listen.” It’s catchy and there’s also some truth to what he’s saying. Collaboration is an important workplace practice. Whether you’re giving a supervisor your input on a new program or you’re building out a proposal for a potential new client, collaboration is key.

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BPO  |  Call Center Tips  |  Increase Profits  |  Innovation  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Outsourcing  |  Sales  |  Technology

Domestic Help or Work Abroad? Deciding where to Outsource Your Business Services

Is your business thinking about outsourcing your interaction center and BPO processes? If so, you’re facing a complex set of decisions that will affect customer care and communication. 

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Best Practices  |  Communication  |  Employee Engagement  |  Leadership  |  Management

Principles for Leadership from Dr. Gerald Bell

About two years ago our company had Dr. Gerald Bell come to speak on leadership and management strategies.  I was unable to attend his event myself, but I am consistently reminded of some of his principles (which I find very useful!). This morning, our Vice President of Human Resources, Bucky Cline, saw fit to remind us, of some of the strategies that can help us be the best leaders and employees we can be.  If you would like to learn more from Dr. Bell, check out one of his numerous books or sign up for a seminar!

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Communication  |  Education & Learning  |  Employee Engagement  |  Expressed Interest  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Star Principles  |  Training  |  Webinar

Be A Coach, not a Supervisor.

We certainly did not know exactly what to expect with the CMRxchange webinar. Holly Czuba, George Simons and I accepted the offer to present a live session on coaching, communication and collaboration to an online audience of contact center professionals.

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Education & Learning  |  Employee Engagement  |  Growth  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Team Building  |  Training  |  Web conferencing  |  Webinar

CRMXchange Webinar; Coaching with Style goes well!

  Greg Alcorn, Coaching with Style Webinar during CRMXchange virtual conference.

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Communication  |  Fund Raising  |  Leadership  |  Marketing  |  Political  |  Strategic Planning  |  Tips & Tricks

For or Against "Obamacare", We Can Help You Motivate Your Base Constituents

The tension and excitement in the air are palpable this morning after the supreme court's decision to uphold what many call "Obamacare".  President Obama's landmark health care reform bill has a number of stipulations. Among the most discussed:

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Communication  |  Education & Learning  |  GCS Culture  |  General  |  Leadership  |  Performance  |  Relationships With Your Customers  |  Team Building  |  Tips & Tricks

4 Traits of World Class Listening (Being an Active Listener)

We all know that listening is a important skill.  Both personally and professionally, being a good listener can make or break your success. Here are 4 tips, originally described by Dr. Jerry Bell (http://www.bellleadership.com/) to amp up your listening skills and become an active listener.

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Best Practices  |  Call Center Tips  |  Education & Learning  |  Employee Engagement  |  GCS Culture  |  Growth  |  In Our Centers  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Product Conviction  |  Star Principles

Leadership by Listening; Leadership & Management

When you see someone visiting your site, it is human nature to question their motive: are they a client or prospect? are they an auditor? is something important happening?

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Best Practices  |  Communication  |  GCS Culture  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Time Management  |  Training

Personal Growth [Expressed Interest]

Yogi Berra said lots of funny, mixed up quotes. “You can’t think and hit a baseball at the same time” was one of my favorites. It sounds strange, but makes sense when you put it in the context of learning. Professional baseball players practice and drill so that instincts  take over in the millisecond they have for deciding whether to swing the bat.

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GCS Culture  |  Leadership  |  Marketing

X2 Mentoring

On Thursday, January 5th, the marketing team at GCS welcomed to the Salisbury office the X2 Mentoring group from the Youth Services Bureau in Rowan County.

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GCS Culture  |  Leadership

Leadership Rowan [Future Perspectives] ~ September 2011 Session

Renewal

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Leadership

Leadership Rowan [Artistic & Historic Perspectives] ~ November 2011

November's Leadership Rowan class was on artistic & historical perspectives in Rowan county.

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Communication  |  GCS Culture  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Star Principles  |  Training

Leadership Rowan ~ Simulated Society ~ Lessons Learned

I've had the good fortune to be provided with the opportunity to take part in a year long leadership class.  Leadership Rowan is  designed to prepare individuals to assume leadership roles in the county and to further enhance the abilities of existing leaders.  One day each month from September to May we will meet at a different location within the community and learn how that aspect of the community functions.  For example, there is a criminal justice day, a county history day, an arts & culture day and a healthcare day, just to name a few.

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Best Practices  |  Call Center Tips  |  Communication  |  Employee Engagement  |  Leadership  |  Management  |  Productivity  |  Tips & Tricks

The Evil Micromanager. Or, when it's OK to Micromanage...

Micromanaging has a negative connotation associated with it. And rightly so. No one likes to have their boss breathing down their neck, making decisions for them. All employees appreciate a certain amount of autonomy in their work. It allows for ownership of their work. It allows for a more engaged employee. Don't agree? Check out the video in this post.

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10 Years  |  GCS Culture  |  Innovation  |  Leadership  |  Outsourcing  |  Productivity  |  Sales  |  Strategic Planning  |  Technology

Listen to CEO, Greg Alcorn talk about GCS's Beginnings and Growth, both at the Company and Industry Levels.

  At the end of July, GCS is going to be celebrating it's 10 year anniversary.  In honor of such an accomplishment, especially in an environment that is seeing many businesses fail, we're going to be providing some historical perspectives on our growth and changes in the industry over the next several weeks. Two years ago, Greg Alcorn talked to Smallbiz America about GCS.  Listen to the brief interview here. Related articles Marketing & Communication Tips for Your Agency (gcsagents.com)

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GCS Culture  |  Leadership  |  Motivation  |  Performance  |  Productivity  |  Strategic Planning

Staying on Course with Strategic Meetings and Improving Successful Processes

Twice a year we formally block out two days to evaluate how closely our daily activities are aligned with our strategic objectives and then make any adjustments to stay on course. In many ways it is a matter of concluding we need more of the same, just better.

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Call Center Tips  |  Careers  |  Communication  |  Employee Engagement  |  GCS Culture  |  HR  |  Leadership  |  Motivation  |  Performance  |  Productivity

Will I Ever Be Engaged? Exploring Employee Engagement in the Workplace

  A good case for the necessity of employee engagement. via Gallup.

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Communication  |  Leadership  |  Performance  |  Productivity  |  Star Principles

6 Tips on Leading an Effective & Efficient Conference Call

  Let’s face it, conference calls are even more of a necessity in many industries today.  When managed properly, they are an effective means of communication and a valuable business tool because they decrease travel costs and increase the speed of decisions. Below are some of the key tips I have found effective to use when leading a call. Prepare an agenda. Always have your agenda prepared prior to the call and never attempt to ‘wing it’.  As the meeting organizer, it’s your responsibility to take the lead, make sure the proper people/departments are invited, and create an outline that’s easy to follow.  Be sure to include talking points under each bullet to keep the call moving along.  Send out the agenda prior to the call so people can see the review the items and prepare their own notes.

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Client Relationships  |  Communication  |  GCS Culture  |  Leadership

Planes, Trains, Automobiles, a Misplaced Laptop and Team Support

I found myself challenged with the topic for the blog given everything I experienced last week. Even with the typical trials of traveling, from cancelled flights, locked keys in rental car and treacherous driving conditions,( not to mention my laptop taking a roundtrip vacation to NJ for the weekend,) I landed on what I feel was the most important theme of the week, Team Support = Sales Support.

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GPS  |  Leadership

Leadership Rowan [Local Government] ~ October 2011

October's Leadership Rowan day was about Local Government.  Local government day was something I found to be very informative. The last time I remember learning anything about how our government operated I was 14, and that was geared towards operations of our federal government.

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Communication  |  General  |  Leadership  |  Motivation  |  Productivity  |  Star Principles

Practice Makes Permanent

You’ve heard the old adage of “practice makes perfect”, maybe when you were playing a musical instrument or learning to write or participating in sports.

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Client Relationships  |  Leadership  |  Motivation  |  Productivity  |  Strategic Planning

A Strategic Start.

Coach Chip Hester

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Careers  |  Client Relationships  |  Leadership  |  Productivity

A GCS Client Services Director calls the plays...

Many people ask me what my role as a Client Service Director is responsible for and I liken it to being a quarter back on a football team, we set up the game, call the plays and control the field.   Client Service Directors here at GCS serve as the liaison between our Clients and our internal operations.  It is our responsibility to make sure that everything from the start up of a new program, to processing the invoice is taken care of flawlessly.  We have many tasks that include inventory management, performance management, program set up and much more.  Client satisfaction is our goal and what we strive for everyday.  Communication, Organization and Customer Service are really the key elements to our success in this role.

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Client Relationships  |  Leadership  |  Productivity  |  Star Principles

Listening isn't the same as waiting for your turn to talk.

I was doing some research on presentation styles the other day and ran across something that reminded me of this maxim:

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Leadership

Leadership Self-Awareness

Image via Wikipedia

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