Staying motivated at the service desk or at work, in general, is hard. Especially if you have to deal with customers on a daily basis. Yes, working on the service desk brings its own challenges. Interacting with impatient customers that expect you to solve their problem ‘yesterday‘ in a way that puts a smile on their faces is exhausting. And the frustration of prioritizing inquiries, whether you should go with ‘First come, first served’ or assign priority levels manually or automatically…ugh, what a struggle.
It’s pretty easy to get overwhelmed by so many tasks and responsibilities. Аnd it’s even easier to lose motivation to work on the service desk quickly. But don’t worry, here you can find a few tips to help you stay motivated to work at the help desk. 👨💻
Focus on What Matters
Please don’t put too many irons in the fire. There are days when work piles up, and you feel as the responsibilities will never end. During those days, you should focus your full attention and effort on one task at a time. Start with the most vital tasks and work your way down to the less important ones.
Yes, sometimes you can’t tell which tasks are a higher priority. Perhaps some of the customers have been waiting for an answer from you for some time and are already angry, or you have a big customer with a larger lifetime value that it’s not good to leave him waiting. You can try to arrange your customer requests in 3 to 4 categories and complete them by priority.
For instance, you can use the following categories based on the priority and urgency of the inquiry:
- Low priority – in this category, you can put website visitors and customers that are not active at the moment and have general questions that don’t require an immediate response;
- Medium priority – this is a category for your customers that require troubleshooting that doesn’t interfere with their ability to use the project seamlessly;
- High priority – this is the second most critical category which demands a high level of priority, but the functionality of the entire project is not affected, i.e., the customer has a problem only with a specific part of the project;
- First priority – customers with major issues that affect their whole project or company (e.g., crashed server) belong in this category, and customers with problems of the highest level of severity must receive the highest level of priority when it comes to solving the problem.
Learning how to prioritize your tasks can help you stay motivated at the service desk.
Re-Discover Your Passion for Your Career
As time passes and your workload increases, you may have forgotten why you’ve loved the job you’re doing. Understandably, constant communication with customers of different personalities can kill your motivation to work on a service desk. Even if you are a person who enjoys communicating with others, the fact that you are in frequent contact with angry people can sap your patience and enthusiasm. However, you should not let your current stress affect how you work or interact with customers, especially how you feel about your job.
The next thing that you need to do is try to fall in love with your job again. Re-discover what motivated you to seek such a job in the first place. Were those the challenges you faced? Maybe the problems that seemed unsolvable but you’ve managed to solve? Or the inner feeling you got after helping someone? All these reasons create a pleasant feeling that you’re helping someone and contributing to their success. And, even though your consumers don’t always know how to express their gratitude for your assistance, and you don’t always get enough credit for what you’re doing, you should always do your best. No excuses!
Take a Step Back
One way to stay motivated at the service desk is by taking a break. When some customers are nervous and impatient, they can easily get on your nerves. Sometimes all it takes is just 2-5 minutes of deep breathing to calm yourself. You don’t even need to leave your desk for this, just turn off the monitor or close your eyes to disconnect from your surroundings and let your worries drift away. Taking a break is important in every job, especially in moments when you feel stuck and hopeless. Once you get out of the current situation, you’ll be able to deal with the problem more efficiently and you’ll get the job done faster.
And when you need to, get out of the office for a while. You can take a coffee break or just take a walk to get some fresh air. You can even grab a bite if you’re feeling a bit peckish. When taking a break doesn’t help, you can try talking through the whole situation with someone else. Sometimes talking to your colleagues is the best way to get a different perspective on the issue. They can assess the situation objectively and can give you advice that will help you solve the problem quickly. And what seemed impossible sometimes can be solved in under 2 minutes.
Maintain Proper Work-Life Balance
Working at the service desk can drain your positive energy quickly. That’s why in order to stay motivated at the service desk, it’s important to maintain a proper work-life balance all the time. We all sometimes feel overwhelmed, either from work or our personal life problems. But if we don’t get rid of the negative energy in time, it can lead to even worse problems in the future.
Here are a few tips that can help you maintain a balance in your life:
- Meditation – Many studies have shown that meditation and mindfulness can decrease stress levels and anxiety. Meditation is an excellent way to improve your work performance and overall productivity. You should start meditating right away, and you have nothing to lose (except your stress 😉 ).
- Music – I don’t know about you, but I like to listen to heavy metal when I’m mad. It’s my greatest stress reliever. So the next time you’re in a bad mood, try this, put on your headphones, turn up the music, and mellow out.
- Exercising – There is no person who has felt the benefits of exercising on their own skin without recommending others to start exercising as well. Exercising has benefits for your health similar to meditation, it can decrease the feeling of anxiety, and it can improve your focus and concentration.
- Reading – If you want to calm your mind, you can try reading. You can read a good book for improving your communication skills, or you can start with an inspirational self-help book. My recommendation is ‘The Little Book of Hygge’, which is a guide to the Danish philosophy of comfort, togetherness, and well-being, a collection of everything that is right in the world. 😊
I truly hope you’ll try at least one of these tips, and you’ll feel the benefit in your mood and mindset. They can really help you deal with impatient customers with ease.
Never Stop Learning
I don’t think I need to say how important it is to keep learning new things. Knowledge is power! And mastering new skills in different areas can always be beneficial. It can expand your boundaries.
To offer you a sense of what you can learn to become more motivated at the service desk, I’ll give you some suggestions:
- you can learn how to improve your ability to communicate with your consumers in a more professional manner;
- you can learn something new and useful about the products and services that you offer to your customers;
- last but not least, you can learn how to deal with angry or dissatisfied customers.
Handling angry customers with ease can be motivating in itself. Therefore you should always learn new tips and tricks that you’ll keep up your sleeve and use whenever you feel impatience from the other side. As I’ve mentioned in the previous part, you can find books for improving communication skills, for example, ‘How to Talk to Anyone’ by Leil Lowndes. In this book, you can find 92 tricks that can help you become a master communicator. You can also create a ‘How-To’ guide, something like a user manual. That will not only help your customers with their problems but can also help you in reducing the amount of time you spend describing reoccurring issues.
I’m almost sure that even if you follow these tips, some of you will eventually lose motivation in working at the service desk. But as Zig Ziglar once said:
“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing, that’s why we recommend it daily.” 😃
And I believe that now you’re ready to tackle your work assignments and do your best work every day from now on.