Abusive Customers Cause Emotions to Run High

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Fernando, Jean Andrea V.
Abusive Customers Cause Emotions to Run High

1. From an emotional labor perspective, how does dealing with an abusive customer lead to stress and burnout?

Emotional labor, as defined from the book, is an employee’s expression of organizationally desired emotions during interpersonal transactions at work. In a workplace like a customer-service call center, interactions between customers and agents are done through phones. Agents are ordered to show positive emotions to keep the customers happy. Agents, even though they feel something else must try to display other else just to be able to comply with the company’s policy. If the agent is dealing with an abusive customer, their conversation could lead the agent to feel stress by having their felt emotions compromised by their displayed emotions and this could lead them to burn out if they have no outlet. Stress can accumulate and could lead to burn out as well as emotional breakdown if not taken out or relieved.

2. If you were a recruiter for a customer-service call center, what personality types would you prefer to hire and why?  In other words, what individual differences are likely to affect whether an employee can handle customer abuse on a day-to-day basis?

If I’m a recruiter for a customer-service call center, I would prefer to hire people who are less of the feeling personality from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Also, I would prefer people who have personalities with medium level of affect intensity. A person who is high on affect intensity may overreact or get too defensive when a customer tries to be tough on them. They may also become highly emotional and that could result in them retaliating on the customer or breaking down mentally as well as emotionally. Adversely, a person with low level of affect intensity may become insensitive to the customer as well to the needs of their customers.

3. Emotional Intelligence is one’s ability to detect...
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