All in!There is a reason why organizational psychologists are often called in to help companies restructure work flows, advise on coaching practices, and develop plans to help motivate and inspire employees: It works. Sometimes just rearranging subtle differences in corporate structures and workflows can have dramatic effects on employee productivity and morale. If your employees are in need of an improved call center coaching program that helps them progress in their jobs, but you can’t afford to hire an organizational psychologist, take note of some tried and true call center coaching techniques developed by psychologists specifically for work environments like those found at call centers.

Let your employees know that their work matters

Organizational psychologists have found that when people feel their work matters, they’re more inclined to work harder and less likely to feel burnout. Psychologists did a study with a call center that was tasked with raising money for a university. In a randomized controlled experiment, some of the employees heard a 5-minute speech from a scholarship student who had benefitted from the call center team’s fundraising efforts. The other half of the call center’s employees did not listen to the student’s speech. The researchers found that those who had listened to the speech improved their weekly time spent on the phone by 142% and increased the revenue they brought in by 171%. The researchers concluded that when the call center employees could visibly see the impact of their work, and they felt like their job was more meaningful, they were more inclined to work harder.

For your call center coaching program, are you looking for ways to make work more meaningful for your employees? Do they ever see a tangible impact or are they able to personally have an interaction with any of the customers they have helped? Consider finding ways to bring their customer service efforts to life – the more intrinsic motivation your employees feel from their work, the more likely it is that they’ll work harder.

Have your employees work in teams. Small teams.

Call center teams are often large or divided based on the specifics of the job tasks. However, for maximum effectiveness, within your larger teams, divide groups into even smaller teams – even if they do the same tasks. Organizational psychologists have found that the smaller the team, the more accountability each individual takes for his or her actions. Why? Because people don’t worry about letting down “strangers,” or people not as familiar to them, but they do worry about letting down their friends. The smaller and tighter the group, the more people will be motivated to work for the good of the team. If you assign goals for your groups, and if you help foster team-building among the groups, you will find that the individuals in the team will work harder for the good of the group and the organization’s goals because they are more motivated to work for people whom they are close to and who hold them accountable.

Use team-building exercises to strengthen the relationship

A final tip to strengthen your call center coaching program is to help inspire deeper friendships and trust between team members by creating exercises that help them form deeper relationships. One study found that in startups that had the lowest levels of failure and the highest chances of going for an IPO, the cultures had strong levels of commitment, and the employees treated each other like family. When people respect and genuinely like those whom they work with, their social bonds help increase their productivity.

An effective call center coaching program focuses more on just the customers

Before you can expect your employees to offer world-class customer service, you first must work on aspects of your company culture and work environment. Are your employees intrinsically motivated? What are their goals? Do they like the people whom they work with? Are they inspired to improve for the good of the group? How can you foster deeper connections? By taking some tips from organizational psychologists, you will find that by changing your internal dynamics, you will be transforming the outward dynamics, which translates to a better experience for your customers.