Author Topic: My epic fail at beandipping  (Read 4167 times)

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Reika

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My epic fail at beandipping
« on: May 16, 2009, 10:18:23 AM »
[BG] I work in a call center for an insurance company, part of my job duties is to answer questions our agents have about new policies they've written, existing ones, their commissions etc. They need to identify who they are before a rep can give them the information they're looking for. Because they're essentially salespeople, many of them display some of the worst characteristics of such. [/BG]

Had a guy call yesterday and the call went something like this:

Him: I'm calling on policy x, policy y, policy z
Me: Okay, may I ask who I'm speaking with?
Him: Oh, I'm doing good, what are your weekend plans?
Me:  ??? ??? Um, I'm sorry, who am I speaking with?
Him: Wow, what a sidestep. Oh well, I'm Agent A, here's my id#

We get down to the nitty gritty of what he's calling about. After that he then goes into this minirant about how he was just trying to make chitchat and just wouldn't get that I had no idea who he was and that I had a strange male asking about my weekend plans. Or well, maybe I was totally off the wall in my response. If so, maybe the wise folks here can give me some tips for the future.

Shiraz_Much?

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2009, 10:30:14 AM »
Sounds to me like you handled it well.  That is a strange call.  I don't blame you for being perplexed and cautious.

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Black Delphinium

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2009, 11:41:25 AM »
The minirant can be countered by "Agent A, company policy states that I can't give you any info without confirmation of your name and ID number."
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StressedGroom

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2009, 01:13:50 PM »
In sales you are always looking to develop relationships with people who can help you.  At my company we are usually dealing with the same support people on the phone everytime; so you try and develop a relationship with them.  I've actually worked with one of our sales support people for 15 years and everytime I go to the main office she is one of the people I go see.

If he was relatively new to the company he may have assumed he would be dealing with you regularly and try to get to know you better, albeit rather clumsily. 

Reika

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2009, 02:16:17 PM »
In sales you are always looking to develop rel@tionships with people who can help you.  At my company we are usually dealing with the same support people on the phone everytime; so you try and develop a rel@tionship with them.  I've actually worked with one of our sales support people for 15 years and everytime I go to the main office she is one of the people I go see.

If he was relatively new to the company he may have assumed he would be dealing with you regularly and try to get to know you better, albeit rather clumsily. 

I could see that if we were a smaller company. But I have 40-someodd reps in my call center alone, and hundreds if not thousands of agents. I work for an insurance company known for it's "Awesome Appendages" logo that serves all 50 states as well as the various US territories.

Master_Edward

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2009, 05:50:06 PM »
He's a total stranger to you and he asked you about your weekend plans? Yeah that would've went over like a lead balloon with me too. He's the one being rude. And maybe a few screws loose. But I think you handled it fine. I'd be very cautious around someone who does that at work. Very unprofessional. If he does it again maybe remind him that you're there to do your job and not to get a date. I'm all for being friendly with the people you work with, but he definitely crossed the line.

Ed.

sarita

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2009, 06:29:50 PM »
I'm an assistant to an underwriter and she has hundreds of agents.  Of all of those, there are only two people that I can recognize without them introducing themselves - both because they have very distinctive voices and personalities.  The other 99% have to remind me who they are - except it seems like most of them think they're the only agent I ever have to deal with. 

I'd generally try to diffuse such a rant with something like "Oh, Agent X, you know it's company policy for me to ask those questions.  I don't really have a choice."  said in an apologetic tone. 

Reika

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2009, 10:49:58 PM »
See, if he'd even had introduced himself beforehand, I wouldn't mind doing idle chitchat about the weekend. I'm used to chatting with our agents and customers about various things, usually the weather and/or sports. But 99.9% of the time, they give me a chance to find out who I'm talking to and what they're calling about, then I use idle chitchat to give my oh-so-slow computer time to decide if it's going to work or not. And this was the first time I've ever had an agent chastise me for not giving in to idle chitchat.

Glad to know I'm not the only one who felt the situation was weird. :)

Bluenomi

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2009, 11:44:56 PM »
Ugh, I hate it when people do that, the overly friendly thing. Drive me nuts  >:(

If you ring me at work on a work related matter I don't appreciate you taking up my time with chitter chatter. Especially if you are someone I rarely talk to and I have other ringing phones to deal with. A quick 'Hi, how are you?' is fine but you do that AFTER you tell me who you are. If I know who you are without asking or you introducing yourself I know you well enough to ask how my weekend was but otherwise, keep it to business related matters.

It's even more annoying if I've answered someone else's phone and am attempting to take a message for them and I get a grilling about my life story  ::)

Twik

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2009, 05:00:00 PM »
Why do I suspect after "what are your weekend plans"? would have come "If you're not busy, how about a date?" Such cluelessness combined with P/A sulking when frustrated lead me to believe he was working in that direction.
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Reika

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Re: My epic fail at beandipping
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2009, 08:45:56 PM »
Why do I suspect after "what are your weekend plans"? would have come "If you're not busy, how about a date?" Such cluelessness combined with P/A sulking when frustrated lead me to believe he was working in that direction.

Yeah, that's what I was afraid of also. Guys think my voice sounds hot and a few of the agents don't think there's anything wrong hitting on the reps. Ugh.

Though an amusing conversation with another agent today. He commented that I sounded around his granddaughter's age (quite possible since he was in his 70s) and said that he wished she was as sweet as I was.