Firstly, know what you think great customer service looks like. Look for situations and examples when you had an idea, a client, or customer call, where you personally went that extra mile.
Did you change a process or procedure? Or perhaps a staff member you mentored, coached or advised delivered a great customer service win or result for your team, brand or business.
Fundamentally, if you look under the skin of the best teams and call centres, they do have certain things in common: clear communication, consistency, fun, performance management, leadership, engagement, incentives, etc.
Think what made up the best team or company you have been a part of or have seen. Have examples to back up any statements for how you would play a part in, or create, this team or environment yourself.
With this question, the first thing to do is explain what the team skills were, and how you fitted into the team. What made it work? What lessons did you learn and what did you take away from it? If you can, identify the different components that made your colleagues work well in the team, too.
Tread carefully with this question. Whilst the truth may be that you only get out of bed every morning in order to pay your rent, this is not what your potential employer wants to hear.
This question gives you an opportunity to discuss what has attracted you to this line of work and what inspires you to persevere through the tough times. In a sales role, this could be the adrenaline rush of meeting daily targets, whilst in a customer-service role, this could be the personal satisfaction you gain through helping people.
If possible, think work related. There will hopefully be a number of things you are most proud of in your career to date. Think about your key achievements; were they commercial, people or process orientated? What was the cause and effect? How were you involved, what was improved, saved or developed?
If you are short on career-based examples, use personal achievements which demonstrate the commercial skills required for the role, such as team work, commitment, empathy, determination, attention to detail, etc.
Here your potential employer is looking to see that you are capable of planning your time effectively.
They want to hear things like how you hold team meetings to discuss the week ahead and allocate time slots and deadlines for various projects.
It's also important to remember that not all employers are looking for people who are overly ambitious! Sometimes an employer is looking for somebody who just wants to do his or her job very, very well. Being ambitious is not the be-all and end-all.
An ideal answer to this question will demonstrate that you are capable of monitoring a situation as it evolves.
Whilst working in a call centre as a supervisor, I introduced 'Sugar Fridays' - giving my team sweets and treats to get them through the Friday slog.
Prior to introducing the incentive, I compiled a backlog of sales figures from previous Fridays. I then introduced the incentive on a trial period, continued collecting data and cross-compared the results. There was an obvious peak in sales figures and so the incentive became permanent.
We all have a list of things to do. This question is about how you look at that list and determine a process to decide where the priorities are. I want you to give examples of what the priorities are for the business, for example, as well as those for the team - that way, you can demonstrate how you weigh up tasks and add balance to them.
This question requires you to understand the benefits of setting SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound) objectives and developing action plans.
In line with the over-arching goals of the company, I would set personal goals for myself and my team which I would subsequently break down into weekly SMART objectives. I would monitor these closely through general in-office communication and a series of team meetings, as well as through scheduling individual appraisal meetings at 3, 6 and 12 month intervals.