The Coaching Effectiveness Assessment: Your Key to Improved Performance in Contact Centers

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COACHING

Coaching plays a big role in any contact center since it’s so important all agents be the best they can be. But coaching isn’t only about training frontline associates on the technical aspects of their job. Call centers also coach on the customer service skills agents and CX teams need to handle any situation that comes their way. 

While almost every contact center leader will say coaching is important to their business, not all coaches are created equal. 

And on top of that, many call centers don’t:

  • Know the qualities of an effective coach
  • Have a method to measure coaching effectiveness
  • Teach how to be a better coach

For an industry that relies so heavily on coaching, it’s surprising how much room there still is to improve the coaching at contact centers. 

What Does Coaching Effectiveness Mean to Contact Centers?

When it comes to call centers, coaching efficiency is all about making sure the process for training frontline agents is as effective and productive as possible. 

Good contact center coaching is about finding the right balance between time spent coaching and the performance improvement of each agent. High coaching efficiency means the training is working well, and frontline associates are quickly getting better at their job. 

6 Qualities of an Efficient Call Center Coach

The role of coaching in contact centers falls a lot on the individual team leads, supervisors, and managers. 

Tasking someone with coaching doesn’t immediately make them a good coach. Just because a frontline associate has outstanding KPI metrics doesn’t mean they have the ability to coach others. But for most contact centers, coaching ability isn’t a factor – or isn’t a major factor – in selecting a new supervisor hire. 

So what are the qualities of an efficient contact center coach?

1. Strong communication skills

Make sure your supervisor candidate has great communication skills. This means they’re able to listen carefully to others and respond with clear, meaningful conversation. 

2. Ability to identify problems in agent performance

Call centers might have a library of coaching collateral. However, if the supervisors don’t have the ability or tools to identify the cause of an associate’s poor performance, even the best coaching resources aren’t efficient. 

3. Ability to provide constructive feedback 

Delivering good news is easy; delivering bad news isn’t. A good contact center coach will be able to provide actionable feedback to help improve their frontline agents. Actionable feedback is clear, focused on a specific task, and time-bound. 

4. Deep understanding of call center operations and metrics

Effective coaches are familiar with the specific procedures and protocols of their organization, whether it operates in-house or as a business processing outsourcing provider. Great coaches use this knowledge to guide agents in achieving success within the established system.

5. Ability to create and implement a coaching plan

Creating a coaching plan isn’t as simple as telling an associate, “Lower your AHT.” Instead, efficient coaches help their frontline agents with a strategy of tactics to lower their AHT. And then the coach continues to follow up with the employee on the progress, changing tactics that are or aren’t working. 

6. Desire to create a better employee experience

Employee experience is directly impacted by an employee’s supervisor. According to a survey from Gallop and WorkHuman, Managers who provide regular employee recognition, tend to have employees that are 56% less likely to be seeking new job opportunities, 4x likely to be more engaged, and 5x as likely to see a path to grow within their organization.

An engaged workforce can save up to $16.1M in turnover annually with recognition as a key culture element

Gallup’s analysis of the study data shows that an organization of 10,000 people with an already engaged workforce can save up to $16.1M in turnover annually when they make recognition an important part of their culture.

3 Tips for Measuring Coaching Success

Understanding if your coaches are efficient can be tricky. But if you’re not tracking each supervisor’s coaching efficiency, you might be setting some of your best frontline associates up for failure. 

How do you measure coaching success? Here are a few tips to get started: 

Establish clear performance metrics

Identify key performance indicators (KPIs) that align with the goals and objectives of the coaching program.

Track the progress of frontline associate over time

Regularly monitor the progress of your representatives and agents to determine if coaching efforts are having an impact. Be sure to compare all the agents a manager is coaching to get an accurate result. 

Get feedback from agents

Want to know if a coach is doing a good job? Ask the people being coached. Employee feedback can help identify areas for improvement for individual coaches and the coaching program as a whole. 

20 Questions to Assess Coaching Effectiveness

Our team has worked with a lot of contact center coaching programs. Based on our experience, here are 20 questions you should use in your routine assessment of coaching effectiveness.

Coaching Skills

Answer Selection
Points = 0, 2, 5

1. Was the coach was prepared?
Did they prepare data, including: prior commitments, agent progress, or observed performance?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

2. Did the coach connect warmly?
Note the coach’s verbal cues or body language.

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

3. Did the coach praise first and effectively?
Was the coach prepared to praise the employee with their words, facial expressions, and with details and examples?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

4. Did the coach address a single corrective behavior?
Was the coach focused on a specific goal or KPI?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

5. Did the coach address the highest-value corrective behavior?
Did the coach outline the best tactics for the agent to improve?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

6. Did the coach ask questions about causes and solutions?
Did the coach actively listen to the agent’s responses?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

7. Did the coach avoid judging, mistrusting, and aggressive language?
Did the coach approach the situation from a supportive standpoint?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

8. Did the coach address objections and get buy-in?
Did the coach listen to the agent’s questions and help get solutions?


Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

9. Did the coach ask for agreement or commitment for a specific action or behavior?
Did the coach and agent agree on the goal? Did the coach confirm the requirements to achieve that commitment?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

10. Did the coach offer actions or commitment to take in support of the agent's commitment?
What next steps did the coach agree to do to help the agent succeed?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

11. Did the coach end the coaching session on a high-note?
Did the coach offer encouragement and positive expectations to close the coaching session?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

Commitments & Follow Up

Answer Selection
Points = 0, 2, 5

1. Did the coach get a specific, behavioral commitment for how the agent will improve?
Does the agent clearly know what is expected of them to achieve their goal?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

2. Were the agent's commitments broken into incremental, step goals, and not just a mirror of the end goal?
Did the coach establish key moments to recognize the agent’s progress toward their final goal?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

3. Were the coach's commitment actions appropriate and supportive of the agent's commitment?
Did the coach choose helpful next steps that will help the agent succeed?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

4. Did the coach set a follow-up date and timeline that matches the urgency or severity of the agent's opportunity?
Was there a clear and reasonable timeline established for the next check-in?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

Procedures

Answer Selection
Points = 0, 2, 5

1. Did the coach conduct the session in an appropriate location?
Did the coach choose a coaching location that was free of distractions and helpful for the conversation?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

2. Did the coach use an acceptable amount of time for the coaching session?
Was the coaching session appropriately timed – not too long and not too rushed?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

3. Did the coach follow the company’s prescribed coaching methods?
Was the coach using the organization and/or team’s coaching processes correctly?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

4. Did the coach capture the session details and notes as required?
Was the coach recording important notes from the coaching session?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

5. Did the coach record the follow-up tasks and actions?
Were the next steps and timeline clearly detailed in the coach’s notes?

Opportunity +0
Acceptable +2
Strength +5

Download Your Free Contact Center Coaching Effectiveness Assessment

Are you trying to improve the coaching effectiveness of the frontline supervisors at your contact center? If so, it’s helpful to have a variety of coaching measurement tools. 

This free coaching assessment will help you calculate an efficiency rating for your call center coaches. Then you can use the results to track each coach’s progress over time. 

Download the coaching effectiveness assessment and score your frontline coaches.

Don’t Let Poor Coaching Effectiveness Affect Your Call Center Performance

Understanding the effectiveness of your call center supervisors is essential, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. 

It requires a complicated combination of clear goals and objectives; personalized and regular feedback; the use of data and analytics; and a variety of coaching techniques. At the end of the day, it’s a lot for any call center leader to manage. 

But it doesn’t have to be so complicated.  

If you want to amplify your organization’s coaching performance, simplify your data analysis process, and create a better employee experience for all your frontline team members, let’s chat

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