You have this foolproof plan to expand your business. Nothing could possibly go wrong, well…let me tell you a little story.
I’m expanding the operations of my business and I realize I need to have a call center. You know, a bunch of people sitting around talking on the phone all day AKA telemarketers. I know what you’re thinking, but my telemarketers will be different. I’m not yet sure how, but they will be.
First thing I do is setup up my CRM to support this kind of thing, press a few buttons and scratch my head a few times – whizz, bang and pop; I get everything working okay. The separate accounts are created and, in theory, I am now ready to begin call center operations.
Oh, wait! I need some call center employees, maybe just one to get the ball rolling, then expand from there. I don’t want to outsource this, but I don’t want real employees either, so I split the difference and settle on Upwork then place a strategically worded ad.
“Call Center Representative Wanted”
The applications come in and life is looking pretty good. “I should have done this a while ago,” is the current thought. I found somebody or maybe they found me. Either way, the qualifications were great, the price point was in my budget and we are moving forward.
Day one, we worked together for a little while. We laid the groundwork, established a basic working relationship, set up all the technology and started working through problems. Life is good.
Day two, we got the rest of the tech set up, had a problem that we had to solve to move forward. I worked on it on my own for a while and then got it fixed. Life is still good.
The plan for day three was to go over call center operations and things like that – learn how to transfer and route calls, start getting the documentation together for writing training materials, and all that stuff.
That was the plan, but that did not occur. Between day two and day three, the person I hired had a problem. Actually, her friend got into a car accident. I think she was hit by a drunk driver then called my person to help her out because she didn’t have anybody else. Now, of course, my awesome person helped out her friend all night and was too tired to work then helped out her friend the next day and so forth.
At this point, my awesome employee gave her notice because she doesn’t want to have her burdens affect my company. I now have to again start the search for a great person to help me set up a call center. Three days were lost in getting this going. My frustration level went pretty high as I spent day three cussing at the computer all day. Day four, I was resigned to design this whole thing from scratch and start the process all over.
The biggest thing I learned, the moral of the entire story, the reason you came this far to read is…
“If I designed a business process so weak, that some drunk on the other side of the world can disrupt the whole thing and have it come crashing down….”
You know the problem with foolproof plans?
Once you design them, you’ll find a better fool. In this case, it was me.
Live and learn.