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Human Resource Management, 3rd Edition by Brown Kenneth G., Stewart Greg L.

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Chapter 4

Designing Productive and Satisfying Work

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A MANAGER'S PERSPECTIVE

JANE SITS IN HER CUBICLE WONDERING HOW SHE CAN MAKE WORK MORE ENJOYABLE FOR THE TELEMARKETERS SHE SUPERVISES. SHE PERSONALLY FEELS A SENSE OF ACCOMPLISHMENT WHEN SHE CLOSES A SALE OR RESOLVES A CUSTOMER'S CONCERN. BUT SHE KNOWS THAT SEVERAL MEMBERS OF HER TEAM DON'T GET A GREAT DEAL OF SATISFACTION FROM THEIR WORK. THEY OFTEN INTERACT WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE IRRITATED FOR BEING INTERRUPTED. RECEIVING INBOUND CALLS CAN ALSO BE FRUSTRATING, AS CUSTOMERS OFTEN MAKE UNREALISTIC DEMANDS. ALTHOUGH JANE KNOWS IT IS UNLIKELY THAT SHE CAN CHANGE THE TELEMARKETER JOB SO THAT IT IS FUN, SHE WONDERS IF THERE ARE THINGS SHE CAN DO TO IMPROVE WORKING CONDITIONS AND MOTIVATION.

The members of Jane's team sit in private cubicles and take calls. They are given approved scripts that describe what they should say. Jane and other managers often listen to conversations to make sure the telemarketers are following the scripts. Jane knows the scripts were developed with input from some of the most successful telemarketers, but she often thinks that members of her team come across as presenting a memorized speech rather than being genuinely interested in the customer. She wonders if it wouldn't be better to allow members of her team more freedom to stray from the scripts. Would allowing greater individual freedom improve service ...

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