Could a Call Centre Role Change Your Career?There are lots of preconceptions about working in a call centre but environments have changed massively, but how can a Call Centre jobs potentially change your career?
What happens when you hear the word “Call Centre” – does your body stiffen, filled with the sensation of dread as you imagine endless rows of desks occupied by exhausted, nearly suicidal headset-wearing operators being verbally abused by angry customers calling about their broken boiler? Guilty! That was me through and through. In all honesty I thought that a Call Centre was just one stop before the final destination – which most probably is hell because let’s be honest, who haven’t given a bit of attitude to that mobile phone operator, gas supply chain customer service assistant or that PPI salesman who’s ringing you day and night?
I started working in one of the Call/Contact Centres in London because like the majority of us mere mortals I needed money. Funnily enough, being multilingual, I never considered my language skills as something I could use in a professional work setting; I mean who would like to hire me just because I speak languages? What about other skills? Surely everybody speaks a second language here in the UK?
I was wrong, just like a lot of bilinguals I meet now who think in a similar way. Language skills are among the most sought after skills by potential employers, what’s even more important is the fact that knowing a second or a third language often means that you don’t need a specific business or industry specialisation because you can find work just on a basis of being a fluent multilingual.
There was I on my first day in a call centre, a graduate in Psychology - thinking to myself that surely I must be the crazy one here! What was I doing? What was I signing myself up for? Endless abuse over the phone, long hours, low wages and a sore throat surely!
I was wrong and I realised it as soon as I arrived at a swanky, stripped brick building near Waterloo and was greeted by the coolest looking lady I have seen in a while. Looking around the office I recognised no desperation in any of the Operators faces. Hold on, I thought to myself, did I come to the right address?
I was in the right place. Actually, I arrived at a place that became my second home for the duration of the following months, a place I couldn’t wait to get to in the morning, a place where I made amazing friends, decent money and developed valuable connections, got great references that led me to a career in the City of London. I gained extremely useful skills; learned a huge amount of business strategies that I have never been exposed to before; I learned how to use my language skills in a professional setting and how to professionally conduct myself on the phone. As time passed I developed my confidence, learnt how to deal with rejection and stay patient and polite in the face of adversity, all the skills that are of paramount importance in my daily work nowadays.
Most importantly however, I have learned to never again have preconceived ideas about anything else in my life - be it in a private or professional setting - and to remain open-minded to every opportunity that life throws at me, because we never truly know where these opportunities may lead us if we are not prepared to take any risks!
If you have fluency in a second language and not sure how you can use this in your future career, have a look at all the Contact/Call Centre opportunities we have available. There are opportunities to travel and work with some of the top companies across Europe.