Being a call agent is anything but easy — you dedicate your time to tend to client issues while maintaining a calm and collected tone.
Recent statistics say there are over 240 million emergency calls in the U.S each year. To meet the demand, call agents must be prepared to handle difficult situations using only their voices.
Luckily, we have guidelines for call agents in stressful and time-sensitive situations. Keep reading to learn the traits of a well-trained call agent and how to handle emergency calls like a pro.
A well-rounded call agent is sympathetic, a good listener, and can read between the lines. Customers, or callers, won’t always know how to express themselves or explain their issues to call agents.
The perfect call agent knows how to show empathy and be compassionate without losing track of the caller’s purpose. They can also detect an emergency by paying close attention to the caller’s voice.
Whatever the emergency, call agents should remain calm and attentive to the caller’s request. For instance, if a call agent succumbs to the stress of dealing with an emergency call, they will not be able to listen nor help the caller. The situation turns dire when for the caller, that one call might be the only chance for help.
Questions to Ask
Listening to a caller attentively can sometimes save the situation. Are they giving you enough information about their current location and mental state?
If not, consider asking the following:
- What is the exact location of the caller?
- Should authorities be dispatched at once?
- Is there someone close by who can help?
De-Escalate the Situation
A caller losing their temper during an emergency call is one of the major challenges a call agent faces. Dealing with people is the most demanding job on the planet – call agents can attest to that.
It’s not a surprise to hear a caller get upset, so call agents have a way of dealing with situations like this.
Using affirmative phrases, like “I understand the gravity of the situation…” or “Let me help…” can curb further escalation. Luckily for call agents, positive scripting exists. These offer agents guidelines and templates for dealing with stressful, emergency calls.
After a call agent has gathered enough info, such as the caller’s location, they should take a proactive attitude and know where to direct the call next.
Namely, if a caller immediately tells you they have trouble breathing, you should know to dispatch an ambulance without waiting for your caller to tell you they need medical help.
A call agent should know how to react in an emergency, whether the caller is in physical pain or has become aggressive.