News & Insight

We’re Not Mind Readers – Why Communication Matters

You’ve tried everything, but nothing you’ve implemented seems to have a significant or lasting impact on your customer satisfaction metrics. While standard approaches may help you meet certain goals like average handle time (AHT), they don’t significantly improve CSAT or NPS. What if a different approach existed that used human communication science to help your brand? Good news! It does.

Utilizing Dialogue

In today’s digital world, Artificial Intelligence (AI) has found a place in most homes in the United States. Given the increasing adoption of AI and its potential use in the engagement (contact) center, many leaders are reconsidering the role of humans in the customer experience. At STARTEK, we too believe there is a place for AI in the contact center. But we also believe there is a place for real dialogue. After all, the last mile of every customer journey often starts at a human intersection. When the conversational need of the customer is social, and the complexity of the situation is high, AI needs to power down while humans talk. And that’s where dialogue comes in. We define dialogue as a structured yet spontaneous process of exchanging information. This is achieved through elements like managing ones’ emotions, sharing experiences, and negotiating identity – all of which result in mutual value creation and reciprocal advocacy.

Get to Know Your Customers

If you think about it, our identity is mostly constructed and managed during conversations with others. We manage our self-image during conversation, and we all experience moments of vulnerability during which a carefully crafted comment can make an impactful difference. This is also true with your customers in the engagement center who often have conversational needs such as assurance, guidance, education or relating. For example, a customer may call in about a technical issue pertaining to their phone. Vulnerability dictates that the person may be feeling unintelligent because they need to ask a specialist for help. Another customer may be feeling embarrassed and irresponsible if calling in about a billing issue caused by a financial struggle. By utilizing the concepts of dialogue, engagement specialists are equipped with the communication knowledge and skills to quickly get to know your customers and help people in need by developing trust, rapport, and credibility. Whether an engagement specialist (agent) is interacting via email, text, or over the phone, how well they are able to create a real human connection will make or break the customer experience. After all, customers need:

  • A sense of trust
  • A feeling of respect and importance
  • To feel like their concerns are being heard
  • To communicate in their preferred channel of choice
  • Prompt service and resolution

Engaged Communication Professionals

At STARTEK, we train not only our engagement specialists but also our clients’ front-line employees, managers, and executives to become expert interpersonal communicators who view customers as fellow human beings in genuine need of assistance. Engagement specialists are also encouraged to develop and use their own unique style when assisting customers – applying their own set of communication talents and expertise to every customer interaction. By teaching engagement specialists to engage in “whole brain” conversations, we see meaningful connections with customers, highly satisfying work for engagement specialists, and strong customer loyalty to the brand. In fact, when enacted, dialogue allows for the most communication complexity and produces the highest gains in customer-facing metrics such as customer satisfaction, retention, and sales. Remember, communication is the heart of every organization, so don’t forget the glue that holds it all together.

If your communication style is teetering in the transaction or interaction design phase and you want to move to authentic dialogue, contact us today. To get started, visit our website at and fill out our contact us form to learn how we can take your customer conversations to the next level.