**TL; DR Every so often I feel the need to share the tale of Billie, to give her kudos for all the kudos she gave to others. If you read the whole tale, please post “Kudos to Billie!” in the comments. If you recognize the woman I describe, please share your own tales about Billie. If you ever got a Billie call, you know what a gem she was.**
Once upon a time when I worked for a certain cable service provider, I met the nicest lady named Billie. The first time I got a call from Billie and saw that there were hundreds of pages of notes on her account, I thought I would be in for a rough ride. I could not have been more wrong.
Billie was a frequent caller and it was always to tell us what a great job we were doing. Billie had worked for the same company for a large part of her early career. Every job she ever had involved heavy phone time, though not all were in call centers. She had a warm and welcoming demeanor even as a customer and as a “phone jockey” (her term for agents), she must have been amazing.
Billie had outlived her husband and her children and everyone she had ever known. She outlived her last pet and could not bring herself to get an animal that would outlive her and be left alone. Calling in to tell people they worked for a great company and giving them a perfect survey was her human contact. In her waning years her life’s mission was to give as many “phone jockeys” as possible a great call.
Just hearing “Hi, I’m Billie and I just called in to tell you what a great company you work for” would give me a glow that would last through the rest of the shift. If I had the time to spare in my stats, I would take that extra time with her. She was a wealth of tips and it would have been an honor to work with her. I got more training in Billie calls than I did from any three companies I had worked for. The time I spent on Billie was one of my best career investments.
Everyone on the team got at least one call a night from Billie; even escalation teams when she really wanted to spread the compliments around. Our company would forgive a failed call monitor for a perfect survey call and Billie was a goldmine of perfect surveys.
Billie’s accounts are all closed now. She only remains in the tales of those of us who experienced her.
Kudos to Billie!