You could hire a team of smart agents, train them well, and compensate them fairly. But when agents are chained to a script from which they cannot deviate, conflict can arise quickly. The connected customer certainly doesn’t view themselves as one-size-fits-all and can sniff out inauthenticity within minutes. They’re demanding personalized experiences, but scripts are the antithesis of personalization.

Agents are often given scripts that they have to follow, but that leaves no room for them to make judgement calls in the moment based on the individual customer. Customers who are dealing with more complicated issues already know they must often speak to multiple support agents and move up the chain before they can speak to a manager who is qualified to actually help them. If a customer talks to everyone within your org chart, you’re doing something wrong. Customers expect agents to be service ambassadors and create personalized experiences.

It can seem a bit nerve-wracking to let agents go “off-script,” but brands need agents who can think on their feet and make sound decisions on the fly. Instead of a seemingly never-ending rule book, have a few principles that focus on the one primary goal: create happy customers who tell others about their service experience. Surveys show that 69% of customers believe their customer service experience improves when agents don’t sound like they’re reading a script.

Additionally, scripts make it clear to customer support agents that they are not skilled enough to handle conversations with their own words. There is no opportunity to let their particular skill sets — such as empathy, and even-tempered — and personality shine through.

Agents that feel they are trusted to deliver personalized, impactful experiences with the customer will feel more engaged and empowered. But scriptless interactions is just one piece of helping agents feel more engaged. To learn more about the nine other steps, download the free e-book: 10 Steps to Empowering Customer Service Agents.