The ramblings of a self-proclaimed call center veteran - on surviving the Philippine Call Center industry.

Monday, December 06, 2010

HILARIOUS TIPS


All credit goes to Nluciano 94 for this hilarious post.

Original link can be found at one of the best pinoy callcenter sites out there: http://www.pinoycallcenter.com

Source:http://www.pinoycallcenter.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=2931

Call Center Survival!

1. Matulog at least six hours (pangarap ng karamihan).
2. Huwag magbabad sa internet.
3. Huwag makipagrelasyon tapos kapag split na, magre-resign na.
4. Konting contentment lang. Hindi yung kapag nabalitaan na may magandang bigay sa iba lipat agad.
5. Kumain ng maayos. Hindi puro yosi at kape lang. Wag din puro donut at hotdog.
6. Vitamins at tubig.
7. Maayos na jacket at yung paminsan-minsan nakakatikim ng laba.
8. Toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash.
9. Spill-proof mug
10. Mabilis na daliri para pindutin ang mute. Hindi po release.
11. Maayos na pakikitungo sa immediate supervisor. Siyempre pati sa mga ka-team.
12. Kung bawal ang cellphone sa floor sumunod na lang sa patakaran. Maghintay na lang ng break. Or gamitin ang restroom break (kung meron).
13. Gamitin LAHAT ng breaks. Wag magpaka-martir.
14. Wag magpa- NCNS. (no Call no Show/AWOL)
15. Kung absent at nag call-in ka at sinabi mo na may sakit ka tapos hindi pala. Huwag mag-post sa social networking sites. Sabihan din ang ibang taong kasama mo na wag ka i-tag.
16. Mag-ingat sa mandurukot. Pati na rin sa stalker.
17. Huwag sigawan ang caller. Professionalism ehem.
18. Huwag kalimutan ang ID at access card. Hassle kapag naiwanan sa bahay. Sayang kapag nawala.
19. Makipag-kaibigan sa 'real people'.
20. Marami pa sana kaso inaantok na ko. Last tip muna - Sandamakmak na pasensiya lalo na sa mga hindi nagbabasang callers.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

TIPS ON - “STAYING HEALTHY” WHILE BEING AN AGENT

An environment of drinking, smoking, caffeine and fast foods is linked to a typical call center.  It takes discipline and effort to keep your body in tip top shape.

So here are some tips to keeping healthy.

1 ) Eat fruits and veggies
Since you now have erratic work hours and you often do not get enough sleep and exercise -- make up for it by eating healthy foods.  Do not let a day pass without eating some sort of vegetable or fruit.  It's hard to avoid fat and junk foods, so at least compensate.

2 ) Try to lessen drinking and smoking
This may be impossible for some people since smoking and drinking are their only means to socialize --  but it's either be lonely or you die early.  If you cannot remove it, then at least lessen it.  Take in the reality that you are now working a graveyard shift. This means your body is twice prone to sickness & diseases.

Try to lessen socializing with vices and start thinking of the future more. Find nerdy friends who have no vices (joke).

Anything you do to your body now will definitely catch up after a while.

Also a trainer once mentioned to me that the best way to stop smoking was to quit “cold turkey” – this means that you just decide to quit…just like that.

3 ) Take Vitamin C
Before I was very susceptible to colds -- If my seatmate sneezed on me (yes, the uneducated person did not cover her mouth), I’ll get the sniffles in a few hours. I then went to mercury drug and bought a Rhea Vitamin C bottle (since this is the cheapest, 100 tablets cost about 115 pesos). I drank a 500mg tablet everyday and found that getting colds were less frequent.

4 ) Drink lots of water
A no brainer - Google this for more information.

5 ) Find time to exercise
Another no brainer -- we need exercise, but how do we do that when we are so exhausted after our graveyard shifts?

What works for me is that I try to climb the MRT stairs whenever I can, or walk to wherever I’m going.  30 Minutes of brisk walking is a good amount of minimum exercise.  If I have time I try to do stretches when I wake up and jump-rope around the house.

I tried enrolling in a gym once, but I was often too sleepy and too tired to exercise -- I just wasted my membership. I also bought hip-hop abs DVD, and I just ended up laughing at the girly muscular dancing dude. Find something that works for you. A simple routine is better than nothing.

*** I also bought this circular thingie exercise machine from a friend for about 350 pesos. I believe its called "Exercise Twister" I use it for about 30 minutes a day and it really works for me.***


6 ) Choose Sleep over Gimik (socializing)
Gimiks and socializing is also important if you are a normal human being.  But if you have to sacrifice sleep just to attend a party, then think twice before attending.

7 ) Bring Alcohol
Not alcoholic beverages - but the Green Cross alcohol kind.  The Call center environment is conducive for lots of viruses (flu viruses, cold viruses, the HIV and AID's virus). Use rubbing alcohol if needed or Alcogel.

For guys, just wash your hands often and use soap after you pag-pag.

8 ) Avoid multiple partners
Just make sure that the sexy chick you are dating is not the office slut, or that the guy you sleep with does not have herpes.  One night of bliss can be equal to a life of pain and suffering.

In the end you just really need to use common sense to stay healthy.  If you have any other practical health tips, then feel free to share them.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

TIPS ON BEING FAITHFUL WITH RELATIONSHIPS


Why are call center agents notorious for being unfaithful?  Is it the cold environment?  Is it the liberated worplace?  Oftentimes agents already have good relationships that they ruin because of the sweet talkers and the sluts at the office.

So how do you avoid temptation?

1) Watch how deep your friendships will be
People with families or are in serious relationships should act accordingly.  If you are committed, then stop acting as if you were single. Make the office relationships professional, and not too personal. Make friends but make sure that you’re not "too" friendly. Focus on your work -- and get tempted less.

2) A callgirl/callboy slut will always be a slut
If someone still pursues you when it's clear that you are already in a relationship -- then that someone is a slut.
Do not give in to the gifts, the sweet words, the skimpy skirts/tight pants.  Chances are they are just dong it for the thrill of pursuing someone committed.  People like that have no respect for themselves, and people who do not respect themselves do not respect others. Do not even think that a slut will change once you become a couple.  If sluts wanted to change, they would pursue someone who was single and available.

3) Don’t be tempted by appearances
Some call center agents are social climbers -- they use all their wages to put up a front of affluence.  They make you think that they are the real catches and they give you a "bakit ngayon ka lang dumating" aura.
Do not be tempted into thinking that your wife/husband/current GF or BF, is someone less than those who have flashy accents, high end cell-phones, and designer clothes.

People serious with relationships are practical since they are planning to have a good future with you.

4) Believe in the power of Karma
If you are committed and you still sleep with call center sluts -- then be afraid…be very afraid of…the power of KARMA!

Fate cannot be mocked, you will reap whatever you sow.  So rather than feel the negative wrath of the universe, just be faithful.

5) Stop the Fantasy of What if's

Stop thinking that this person may be better.

Rather than magnify the faults of your partner, try to magnify their strengths.  It is always better try to fix a relationship first, rather than look for greener pastures.

If things do not really work out with your current partner -- then break-up first.  ONLY THEN should you start looking for another.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

TIPS ON - SAVING MONEY AS AN AGENT


75% of call center employees spend their salaries within five days upon receiving it.  Then they end up counting the days till their next paycheck.

This is a study that was done by me (so technically imbento lang yon).  But based on my humble observation, call center agents have poor discipline when it comes to money.  They end up splurging on Taxi's, Starbucks, cellphones, designer clothes, pokpok's and whatever -- simply because of the "malaki naman sahod ko mentality" and the "mag-iipon ako next sweldo" mindset.  And in the end years pass and nothing financially solid is gained.

So what are the money saving tips I applied?

1) Realize that the call center is an unstable working environment.

I have mentioned this in previous posts.

The call center is a very unstable environment.  Your salary, account, status, titles, training, office romance, depend solely on the next “end of life” of your account.  I have seen  Managers, TL's, and whoever lose their jobs in an instant due to the US clients closing/transferring to other Business units.

Some call centers promise to give their agents a stable future -- this is crap!  Learn to be prudent and save.

2) He who gathers little by little makes it grow.

This is somewhere in the bible.

Every payday start setting aside a small amount of money, 500 pesos or 250 pesos will do.  Put this is a small piggy bank.  After a while you'll be surprised that you actually saved something -- as opposed to trying to put a big amount in the bank that you end up withdrawing anyway.

3) Have two bank accounts.

One is for your pay check, one is for your savings.  If you just put all your money in one account, chances are you'll spend it all (been there, done that).  Try to enroll in BPI's direct save up.  The bank takes money off your paycheck every payday and put this into your savings.
 

I am not endorsing this, I am sharing this because it worked for me.

It would also help if your saving account has a passbook.  Atm's are so convenient to use, so it's so convenient to spend your savings as well.  By holding a passbook, you will be subjected to the banks "time-space-warp dimension" where you have to be horribly hassled to withdraw.

4) You will survive with what you have.

I noticed that we survive with the money we actually have on hand -- call it our survival instinct kicking in.

Try to save the money first, and try to live by the money that was left -- you will survive. 


Wag ka lang mang-utang ng mang-utang!

5) Try to be thrifty

A priest once said, "you have no right to luxuries till you have your own house and car."

In tagalong "WALA KANG KARAPATAN SA LUHO HANGANG DI KA PA NAGKAKABAHAY AT KOTSE!”

Practice thriftiness -- bring packed lunches,  do not go to GIMIKS every other night, and be content with your current cellphone.

Think about this, going to lunch outs a day amounts to 50 pesos.  One kilo of hotdogs cost 150 pesos -- good for the whole week.  I'm not saying that you eat hotdogs everyday because that would be a certain cause of umay, but you see the point.  Find ways to save money and be happy and content with what you have.

I know a guy who had every latest cellphone and his lack of discipline led him to a life of poverty.

*side note:  Some agents must always have the latest cellphone or gadget.  Wala naman kotse -- na hoholdap tuloy.*


6) Make a Budget plan

Sounds redundant, but you really need to do this.

As soon as I get my paycheck I do the following.

1) I set aside a small amount for my savings.
2) I then proceed to list all the bills I have to pay (Water, Electricity, Bahay, Girlfriend1, Girlfriend2.)
3) I then compute my everyday allowance (transpo, food, packed lunch.)
4) I then allocate a Gimik fund (We need to have some fun!)
5) I add and subtract the figures.
6) Tapos sasakit ang ulo ko kakaisip pano ko pagkakasyahin ang pera ko.

Just remember, you will not be young forever so get more discipline in your life.  See to it that you don’t wake up one day, be 30 years old, and still have nothing.

The sacrifices you do now determine how easy life will be in the future.

You can also check out the Blog of All I can Handle on : 13 Tips on How to Save Money

Any other suggestions you can think of?


Also see TIPS ON EARNING EXTRA INCOME

Monday, August 02, 2010

A Call Center Blog in the Philippines

Three years ago I jumped for joy and did a backflip when I got accepted as a customer service agent for a local call center. I immediately went online to ask the smartest entity I know (Google) about the in’s and out’s of my new career.

I then received tons of information from several sites, blogs, and forums on how to work in the call center industry. Some ideas were good, some were bad, and some were just plain stupid (you will automatically get Aids when you work in a call center). Still, I did learn a lot and will be eternally grateful to those writers who took time to write guides for call center noobs like me.

Three harrowing years after, I now proclaim myself as a call center veteran (I also have the eye bags to prove my claim). I decided to join the ranks of those who gave me inspiration when I started out as an agent, and share the personal lessons I learned on how to survive the call center industry.

Not to brag (kuno), but I have bought a house, got myself a nice girlfriend, have money in the bank, and acquired small personal business. I also managed to work on a college degree — all this from being “just an agent”. And if I can do it, then so can you!

So I hope you get something out of my humble tips on how to survive the call center industry as an agent.
Happy reading!


Sa mga O.A. na grammar police — If I make some grammatical errors paki-intindi — Agent nga ako eh, hindi English coach!