Every business on the planet wants to increase employee engagement, reduce absenteeism and mental health issues and create environments which are capable of improving human performance and wellness. We all know when our employees are happy their lives, our lives and the lives of our customers are better, this results in the best customer satisfaction, profitability, as well as making the lives of managers a lot easier.

We’ve all read that we need to treat people fairly, respect our employees, support them and make them feel important, but do we all understand the science behind this advice?

First of all the neuroscientist found that those employees who are experiencing any kind of “Social Pain”, for example employees who don’t feel they fit in or who believe they are unfairly treated or undervalued, will deliver their worst performance. These employees are more likely to suffer from mental illness, take time off sick, be disengaged and drag others down with them. Makes sense right? So what does the science show? By using MRI technology to scan the human brain, it’s been discovered that the human brain responds to social pain in the same way it would if the person is being subjected to physical pain! Ouch! Literally. The science also shows that the part of the brain that deals with social pain robs the part of the brain responsible for processing new information and ideas of blood and glucose. Therefore impairing; analytical thinking, creative insight and problem solving.

If like me you’re not a scientist, you’re going to need some help translating these findings into a strategy that will align the way you communicate, measure and support your employees. Thus moving them towards what the scientist call the “maximum reward state”- a state of mind where your team function at their highest levels of efficiency, where their hormone levels are balanced and they feel happy, engaged and are far less likely to suffer from mental illness, leave or take time off sick and are more likely to leave your customers delighted time and time again.

This is where the SCARF model comes in, SCARF stands for Status, Certainty, Autonomy, Relatedness and Fairness, these are the triggers that will allow you to keep your employees in that maximum reward or engagement state and make achieving your goals a reality.

Status: Remove anything that could reduce the importance of your employees, in the world of contact centres this means replacing traditional call handling wallboards with something that measures the performance of your employees throughout the complete lifecycle of their role, including CSAT, and constantly reminds them of how important they are.

Certainty: Reminding your employees that their jobs are safe and that they work for a great company. Many of our customers achieve this by simply using our virtual notice boards as part of their Optymyse Brain Centric Wallboard templates to announce positive company news, it’s as simple as that.

Autonomy: Be open with your employees, include them in your planning where ever possible and make sure your wallboards are transparent and give them the information they need to solve customer problems, not just a bunch of call handling metrics. This approach will also reduce cognitive load and stress.

Relatedness: We are social animals, which means the main reason your employees continue to work for YOU and not someone else is how connected they feel to others at work. A simple solution is to use the Optymyse scheduling feature to upload images of all your agents and set a birthday message to take over 2 thirds of your screens every time someone has a birthday.  Obviously you need to also keep your key real time metrics on the screen and after the message has been published across all screens for the amount of time you desire, Optymyse will revert back to your standard template, this can be repeated a few times a day and also be used for work anniversaries, or to introduce new starters all contributing to a feeling of “relatedness”

Fairness: How fair is it to place large TV screens on the wall for all to see and only measure a small part of your teams role, to let positive feedback and customer success go unnoticed, or not give these positive events the same level of importance? How fair is it to train your agents in the art of delivering customer care and not share how well they are doing this in the same public manor you display how fast they react to a noise and pick up the telephone (a job a chimpanzee could do)?


If you’d like to take a scientific approach to solving workforce issues at your call centre, helpdesk or contact centre, like the sound of higher levels of success and less hassle follow this link and contact a member of our team – https://www.sjssolutions.com/contact/