Upgrading customer satisfaction through a new approach to coaching

If someone told you about coaching that saw a 9-point rise in customer satisfaction (CSAT) scores in the space of a month, you’d be interested, right? If they also said that scores rose even further and stayed at that level month after month, you’d surely want to know more? That’s what Comdata achieved through a new holistic approach to coaching. The project manager behind it, Laurent Volkoff, Head of Support Process and Methods at Comdata Maroc, told us what happened and how.

Laurent, please tell us more about this new coaching method?

We call it MYT – Manage Your Team. We piloted it in Morocco in 2020, then tested it in Mexico, UK, Turkey, Romania and Czech Republic, and now we’re rolling it out across all our geographies. So far we’ve trained 600 managers in 6 months, and the results have been very convincing. 

What’s different about MYT?

In the contact center industry, coaching has mainly been seen as a practice, based on training sessions. Which is fine, but what you see with the training approach is that you invest a lot in it, the managers ‘get it’ and implement it, but then after the first month it starts to fade away. They revert to how they used to things.

So we decided to do things differently, and we started to look at coaching as a holistic approach, not a practice.

Tell us more about this approach?

There are three parts to it, each one innovative in itself. The basis is a mission statement, reminding people – coaches, managers, everyone everyday – that coaching means: “Developing the behaviors that generate results”. 

All the key words are there for them in that statement. Who did you develop today? What sort of behaviors can we improve and develop? Why are we doing this? These are your questions as a coach.

And the second part?

The second element is the processes that guide our managers. We have processes for managing and coaching individuals, such as onboarding, one-to-one sessions, side-by-side sessions and debriefs, and also for managing teams, such as daily briefings and team meetings. Having these in place allows us to audit and improve continuously.

And the third part?

This is the most innovative element of all: a KPI to measure the effectiveness of coaching performance, which we report monthly to our Exco. We call it the Coaching Progression Rate, or CPR, and it reflects the concrete value generated by Manage Your Team coaching.

Having a KPI is transformational because it delivers an absolutely clear message: that we care about coaching and measure its effect. 

So MYT starts with individual floor managers and goes right up to our CEO and Exco through our referent MYT managers in every country and through me, the project manager.

What sort of results have you achieved? What makes MYT such a big development for Comdata and our industry?

The first client we used this for was a media client. We introduced MYT in two activities, customer care and direct sales, in August 2020 and the CSAT was +9% in September 2020. And the following month the CSAT was 101% and it stayed at that level in all the following months. 

So there are two big stories there – the immediate rise in CSAT and the subsequent stability in terms of our contractual obligations. 

The client was delighted, and the credit for that should go to our Operations people. At the end of the day, they are the people who put their trust in this new approach and they are the people who delivered the results.

So, then you decided to take it further?

Exactly. And the next client we piloted it with was a transportation client. Here too, we saw an immediate, and sustained, progression in quality and productivity metrics. We entered the bonus zone and never left it.

We’ve used MYT in sales teams too. And because sales is a very dynamic area, it’s a good way to measure the success of introducing it. 

Our proof point on this one was a major international telco provider. We introduced MYT coaching for some of the agents in December 2020 and saw a jump in their revenues compared to the global figures; we then prioritized MYT for agents we identified as needing additional coaching; and then rolled it out more widely. 

Through that process, we tripled our sales revenues on the account over 5 months – just by caring about coaching and understanding more about it.

They sound like spectacular results. How do they link to the bigger picture of customer management trends?

There’s so much talk in our industry about digital transformation, but we cannot overlook the importance of people transformation too.  Throughout my education and career, I’ve always been very interested in how people lead change – it can be historical figures, political figures, educators, trainers, coaches – and the results that can be achieved through leadership.

In our industry, the leadership, coaching and people element is especially important because we’re people-intensive. 

Tell us more…

Coaching is a major issue for our clients because our agents are their representatives, the voice of their brand. The way our agents act and react and behave is important to the way the brand is seen by their customers. So of course they care about the way we coach and manage our agents. In outsourcing their customer management to Comdata, they’re delegating their most precious asset to us – their customers.

In every tender we do, the clients want to go into this topic in great depth – who are our managers, how do we train them, how do our managers support their teams. The employee experience dictates the customer experience in our industry, so the clients want to know about the effectiveness of our management and coaching approach. 

With MYT, we can demonstrate and prove this effectiveness, and our prospects and clients are seeing that and realizing the innovation involved. It’s not just an abstract philosophy, it’s a concrete lever that brings results – and can be audited. 

The clients clearly like MYT; what about the people doing the coaching and being coached?  

From the 600 managers in 11 different countries who we have trained, we have around 98% in Net Promoter Scores. So, we’re confident in the path we’re taking with them. 

But it’s better I let our coaches and agents speak for themselves, so I’ll tell you some of their feedback. One of our people in Morocco summed it up really nicely: “Since the introduction of MYT, continuous improvement is part of our daily life. The coaching allows us to take a step back and ask ourselves the right questions in order to identify our areas of improvement.”

Or take the words of Hamza, one of our coaches in Morocco: “MYT has brought me closer to the teams. It has allowed us to consolidate the bond between the manager and the collaborator. And since I am the coach of the coaches, I can feel the bond every day.” 

And I’ll give you one more great feedback we received – this time from one of our agents: “Among my experiences in contact centers, this one represents a unique adventure that allows me to develop my professional skills.”

So how will you build on that – what’s next for MYT?

We’ll keep on rolling it out to our coaches and managers globally. We’ll keep on monitoring the Coaching Progression Rate. And we’ll learn continuously – listening to our coaches, managers and clients and looking for anything we can fix or improve. We feel there’s so much more we can achieve for our clients and their customers through MYT, so watch this space!

To find out more about MYT and how we use the employee experience to improve your customer experience, get in touch.


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