Contact center leaders, supervisors, and managers — if you want some must-reads in 2023, look no further than this list of the best contact center books.
Businesses in every industry are investing significantly in the contact center experience today. Once seen as a cost center, top brands are transforming it into a profit center.
Customer service isn’t just about answering questions and closing tickets anymore. It’s about maintaining customer satisfaction (CSAT), building customer loyalty, and fortifying retention to keep them coming back to your brand for more. More than ever, it’s on the entire customer service team to perform at a high level and contribute to a business’ success.
Delivering great interactions through the contact center is crucial, and with technologies and customer expectations constantly changing, it’s vital to continue your education of how to create an efficient, customer-delighting contact center for your organization.
As you navigate the dynamic and rapidly-evolving world of customer service, equip yourself with knowledge, strategies, and insights from industry leaders who’ve achieved success in their own careers. We’ve compiled a list of the best contact center books to help you stay ahead of the curve and deliver outstanding service that delights customers.
Here are the must-read contact center books of 2023 to enhance your knowledge of the contact center and customer service.
Brad Cleveland, who spent over 32 years at the International Customer Management Institute (ICMI) before becoming a consultant, knows a thing or two about contact centers. In Contact Center Management on Fast Forward, he covers everything from customer expectations and omnichannel to performance metrics and social media.
Ready to discover a new tip every week for a year? Customer Service Tip of the Week is the book to deliver a piece of knowledge for the next 52 weeks straight. Written by customer service expert Jeff Toister, the book aims to reinforce your customer service skills. You’ll “build rapport, exceed customer expectations, and solve tough problems” with tips, ideas, and techniques that are all proven to be effective for contact centers.
Mikhail Naumov’s AI Is My Friend uses lessons the author learned “in the trenches” to guide readers through harnessing AI to improve contact center performance. As an “indispensable customer service handbook,” Naumov uncovers “what you must know about incorporating AI solutions in a contact center” in today’s environment.
Be Amazing or Go Home, from “Chief Amazement Officer” Shep Hyken, lives up to the name. It explores everything your brand needs to know about amazing customers and outshining the competition through customer service.
Hyken goes into detail on seven habits your contact center needs, including being proactive, craving feedback, and turning misery into magic.
Given his other books are also well-regarded across the customer experience (CX) community, it’s no surprise to see Be Amazing or Go Home on this list of the best contact center books. Hyken speaks directly to professionals of all levels to educate and empower them.
If you’ve ever worked with customers, you’ll know it isn’t always an easy job. Renée Evenson, writer of nearly a dozen books on business communication and customer service, understands this and equips her readers with powerful phrases that ensure they’ll never be at a loss for words during a customer interaction again.
Evenson focuses on 30 challenging customer behaviors and 20 employee-caused negative encounters. You’ll learn how to assess the circumstance, how to choose the appropriate response, and how to deliver customer satisfaction consistently and with confidence.
Brands and the customer service team interact with each other on the front lines on a daily basis. In the interactions that occur, agents’ top goal is to delight the customer — and that’s typically by achieving a satisfactory resolution. But simply treating the interaction like a transaction isn’t enough. Customers want to feel heard and valued, and this is why your contact center needs to operate with empathy.
Empathy in Action, written by Genysys CEO Tony Bates and former Genysys and Salesforce executive Natalie Petouhoff, explores how “technology can become a force multiplier to deliver more empathy and integrate deeper, more personalized human connections” at scale.
Enable Better Service takes you inside transforming your contact center from an afterthought to a well-oiled, customer-pleasing machine capable of creating unforgettable experiences.
You’ll discover how to run more efficient teams, develop an ironclad contact center strategy, and how to retain top talent.
Take a look back at the history of the contact center — starting with the invention of the telephone — and fast forward through today to imagine how technologies have shaped and will continue to shape contact centers and the customer experience in the future.
Your Call Is Important to Us touches on chapters covering the evolution of call centers into contact centers, how agents should be managed and optimized, the way in which CX is measured, digital customer care, and the impact of technologies such as AI.
Delighting customers with outstanding service starts with the culture among your customer service team in the contact center.
Thanks for Coming in Today, penned by TPG Hotels and Resorts’ Charles Ryan Minton, describes the importance of a culture that can “turn complaints into kudos, identify potential problems before they occur, and make even the minutest detail of a patron’s experience memorable.”
IT professionals’ roles and responsibilities are evolving to include identifying the perfect contact center solution for an organization. It seems straightforward, but the task isn’t so simple.
In Blueprint for the Contact Center of the Future, Erin Wilson cleverly uses the metaphor of building a dream house to guide the reader through every step of the selection process.
Her book is for anyone looking to improve a contact center or to anticipate the changes of the industry and the customers they serve.
Knowing what to say, when, and how is a skill every professional needs. Contact center professionals need the skill a little bit more, though. After all, they’re interacting with customers regularly and one wrong word and misguided explanation could lead to a disappointed customer abandoning your brand forever.
4 Essential Keys to Effective Communication sheds light on what it takes to communicate clearly and eloquently, which everyone in the contact center would benefit from learning to do.
You know The Walt Disney Company for its theme parks and multimedia entertainment, but did you know the global brand also runs a professional development and leadership training division? It’s called the Disney Institute, and it uses the success of the parent company to guide clients on how to delight customers with unrivaled service.
Be Our Guest offers an inside look at “the success many of [the Disney Institute’s clients] have achieved, plus key processes and practices that have made Disney a trusted and revered brand around the world.”
Having a well-oiled contact center with properly-trained agents that produces happy customers is an important part of modern business. It’ll help you not just retain customers but, more importantly, turn them into loyal ambassadors for your brand. Conversely, a contact center that you haven’t given much attention to or isn’t optimized runs the risk of creating angry customers and high agent turnover.
In 2023, read the best contact center books for the following reasons:
1. Understand best practices: By reading the best contact center books, you’re digging into a wealth of information from experts with decades of experience managing agents on the front lines and entire customer service teams. You’ll earn a blueprint to improve your own contact center’s operations and avoid common pitfalls.
2. Gain insight into customer behavior: Books written by seasoned professionals provide insights into customer behavior that only come with years of hands-on experience. Understanding behaviors (and how they’re changing) helps your contact center develop better customer relationships, improve satisfaction, and enhance loyalty.
3. Keep up with trends: What the contact center looked like just five years ago is far different than today. It’s an area of business that’s continually evolving, driven by technological advancements and shifts in customer expectations. From the best contact center books, you’ll stay up to date with the latest trends, including on digital transformation, the use of AI, omnichannel strategies, and more.
4. Acquire leadership skills: Whether you’re already a leader or are an agent aspiring to become a manager or supervisor, it’s important to build leadership skills. Managing a contact center is no easy task. It requires strategic thinking, the ability to motivate teams, and managing resources efficiently. Books in this list offer guidance on honing these skills.
5. Bolster soft skills: Contact centers are all about people — both within the customer service team and the customers served every day. Must-read contact center books cover vital soft skills like communication, empathy, problem-solving, and adaptability.
6. Drive innovation: Reading the best contact center books will inspire you to think differently about how the contact center works. You’ll discover new ways to serve customers, strategize the delivery of service, and transform operations to be more efficient.
Running the best contact center for your organization requires work and continuing education to stay on top of the trends and customer expectations. With our list of the best contact center books, you’ll stay ahead of the competition, delight your customers, and improve overall performance.
Schedule a demo with a Medallia expert — we’ll share where your contact center is today and what our award-winning platform does to uncover actionable insights that improve customer service.