Posted by Dan Smitley on August 23, 2023
Picture this: a seasoned virtuoso of customer engagement, sharing his insights and experiences like an old friend swapping stories. In this casual conversation between Dan Smitley and Bill Brooks, we’ll uncover the essence of Bill’s expertise and why he’s a sought-after consultant for all things contact centers. From unraveling industry challenges to charting the unexplored territories of AI, get ready to gain insights into the mind of a maestro who orchestrates exceptional customer experiences.
Dan Smitley: Bill, your journey in the realm of contact centers is quite remarkable. Could you share a glimpse of how you found your way into becoming a respected contact center expert?
Bill Brooks: Thanks, Dan. My journey began with a genuine interest in working with people and being part of a team. This has evolved into creating high performance teams, both in sport and in business across the globe, where one of the key learnings was the significance of effective communication. From the business perspective, as I ventured into the Contact Center world, I saw the potential to enhance customer experiences by putting the customer at the forefront of every interaction, while creating an environment for each Contact Center team I led, to delight the customer at every interaction. Why delight? Because if one just satisfies the customer, there is still the chance they may take their business elsewhere, but if one does that little bit extra, the risk of that customer taking their business elsewhere is minimized and further loyalty is built into that relationship.
Dan: You’ve recently started working with Call Design. I’m curious, why us? You could be working with a lot of other vendors and contact center groups, why did you want to work with Call Design?
Bill: There are three reasons. First, being from Australia, I’ve known about Call Design for many years and it’s always been associated with excellence in the area of WFM Second, Mark Uren is a good friend of mine and we’ve worked before in a previous organization. I didn’t want to miss out on an opportunity to work with him again. And third, as I started interacting with the people of Call Design North America, I realized there was something special there. I wanted a chance to work with people that loved their job, helping their customers, and supporting each other.
Dan: Well we’re glad to have you! Call Design focuses on solving contact center challenges. From your perspective, what are some of the primary challenges that contact centers are facing right now?
Bill: I see a lot of challenges, but if I were to pinpoint a few, I’d say retaining and recruiting the right talent is a recurring theme. People are at the core of contact centers, and ensuring a loyal, capable and engaged team is vital. The fundamentals of customer interaction haven’t changed significantly in decades – it’s still about getting, keeping, and building loyalty with customers through a Contact Center’s agents. While this has stayed consistent for decades now, I’d also mention that I feel that we’re now at an inflection point with the use and potential use of AI in contact centers.
Dan: AI does seem to come up in A LOT of webinars, case studies, and articles recently. Why do you feel like it’s such a critical moment for AI in contact centers?
Bill: AI is having its moment because of the changes we’ve seen in its modeling over the past 6-9 months. AI has been around for a long time, but only recently have Large Language Models allowed for a new form of conversational and then generative AI to take shape. When I started seeing the generative AI tools come to the market I, like many other veterans, immediately saw the impact it was going to have on contact centers.
Dan: So does that mean we all just need to “sprinkle a little bit of AI” on our contact centers?
Bill: AI is a double-edged sword, Dan. It’s seen as both a challenge and an opportunity. Many consider it a panacea, but there’s a caveat – AI is still relatively new. I’ve been in the field long enough to understand that expertise takes time to develop. It’s more than just deploying a chatbot; it’s about having a strategic vision for how AI can enhance customer interactions. That’s where I come in, helping businesses identify the right AI solutions and weaving them into their strategies then assisting them to execute such strategies.
Dan: You’ve witnessed the evolution of contact centers. How would you describe this transformation, and where does AI fit into this narrative?
Bill: It’s been quite the journey. Contact centers have shifted from transactional hubs to interaction hubs. AI plays a pivotal role by automating routine tasks, allowing agents to focus on building authentic connections. It’s akin to the transition from feather pens to typewriters, but on a larger scale, all aimed at enriching customer interactions.
Dan: Alright, let’s shift gears for a second. Organizations seek your guidance as a consultant. What makes you an invaluable asset for contact centers?
Bill: My track record speaks for itself. I’ve been a part of major transformations and I leave behind a legacy of loyal, well-trained and skilled high-performing teams. My experience is more than just implementing solutions; it’s about nurturing relationships, fostering teamwork, and ultimately delivering sustained excellence. Whether it’s navigating complex challenges or driving growth, I bring a unique blend of leadership and practical insights.
Dan: Your insights and perspectives are enlightening, Bill. What future prospects are you excited about, and how do you envision your role evolving in the ever-changing contact center landscape?
Bill: Dan, the future holds endless possibilities. Working with Call Design excites me—the people here are skilled and focused, and the company’s future is promising. I see my role evolving into a mentorship and guidance capacity, helping businesses thrive by navigating dynamic changes and delivering unparalleled customer experiences.
Bill Brooks brings a unique blend of leadership and human connection to the world of contact centers. As a consultant, his ability to navigate the evolving landscape while fostering teamwork sets him apart. With Bill’s guidance, businesses can look forward to a future where each interaction is an opportunity to make a lasting impact.
Curious to learn more about Bill Brooks and his transformative consulting abilities? Connect with us today to discover how he can elevate your organization’s contact center operations to new heights.