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December 11, 2007

Comments

Nick Urbani

I'd like to touch on a point you made regarding the call center in Bangalore- it is representative of Atida's approach to customers. It's also representative to it's approach to marketing. Its apparent Atida views customer service as just another department within the organization, when really it is part of marketing. All departments are a part of marketing. We talk about it all the time- marketing as strategy- marketing is strategy. I know there is a study to back this so I feel confident in stating marketing oriented businesses are more successful than businesses that view marketing as "the marketing department."

If Atida adhered to this approach they would view customer service as a marketing opportunity to increase the lifetime value of each customer and positive word of mouth. I know you can't disagree with me on this Johnny because you taught me it ;). But I challenge you're proposed action plan and you may disagree on that. From reading the case study, if I'm CEO, I question my leadership team behind the action plan. I believe it takes a different mentality to fix the problem. Jim McIntire and (I believe the other executive's name was Lisa) are not fit to execute your action plan. Their expired view of customer service and marketing won't cut it- I'm looking for the business card of the executive head hunter I met last week.

Any thoughts?

-Nick Urbani

Danielle

Damn it, Johnny, you know how I hate push-ups!

Otherwise, I completely agree.

(and at least they're better than burpies...)

Johnny Chan

Nick-

Love your thoughts there! I did so many mental push-ups from your post that my left cerebral hemisphere is SWOLE right now. Ahhhhh, da pump, da pump...

To be clear, what you're saying is that it's not a "process" problem, it's a "people" problem. It's hard to disagree with that, bud. An action plan isn't actionable if without a strong leadership team behind it.

You're right - a new company activity requires a relentless pursuit of impact from the leadership team. You can't except the change to happen if the change agents don't buy-in to the "why" behind it.

Perhaps a new approach would be best. If Ram Charan is right - that there are four business components consisting of strategy, operations, processes, and people - then we should look at fine-tuning the process and people pieces in parallel.

So the new process might look like this:

1. Institute a new organizational directive.
2. Build the change agent team from the marketing function.
3. Institute the action plan from the original post.
4. Relentlessly pursue impact (from the C-level suite) to attach accountability.

Love it? Leave it? Mental curls for the girls?

Johnny

Johnny Chan

Danielle, of course it's not mental burpees! Burpees deplete anaerobic energy and that would surely affect our ability to analyze.

You're so silly.

Johnny

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Really, johnny you are so silly.you give funny process.

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Thanks for sharing us this article. It is indeed very interesting to read most especially that I am working in a call center company. Keep up the good work!

Danielle

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I used to work in a call center, it is a very stressful job, every time you hanged up, there was already another call waiting. Can you imagine spending all day answering the phone to angry customers.

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