Scripting Skills in the Business World
I run a business that values streamlined production and standardisation. Present the same things to different people and as long as we get the results they want and they hear what they want to hear, everyone can and should be happy.
This is the standard practice for any business; while some value uniqueness and a personal touch, most of us are fine with something that nearly always works and can be easily taught and transmitted to others via a simple guided tutorial and a few lessons you can take here or online, whichever grabs your fancy better.
Our training program that we use to teach aspiring recruits into our business is heavily modelled after an online course that I took when I was starting out. They called it something like Script Training if my recollection is correct, and the main point of it all was to make a template of standardised communication between one of our staff and the many, many kinds of clients that they will inevitably face in the field.
They start off with the fundamentals of communication. The training program and the course it was modelled after emphasised the fact that they would be engaging in conversations with various clients constantly – be it in text or in speech. As a result, a good chunk of the beginning of the program logically had a lot to do with reviewing the core fundamentals of communication. This wouldn’t be the rudiments such as spelling, but rather the core tenants of linguistics distilled into a package that is both easy to understand or comprehend. Learners are made aware of structures, pronunciations, influencing factors that change meanings and so on. Upon this foundation all their future learnings relies upon and will be built upon as they move forward.
Next up are the theoretical frameworks and devices we need to see them use when creating their streamlined and standardised communication. This plays a bit into corporate lingo and business speak, as they’ll be taught terms and words they need to facilitate the kind of communication we’ll be expecting from them. Certain messages need to be written in a certain manner to appear more professional, to emphasise different elements of the text, or to more bluntly simply conform to what the company and the clients expect from one another during the discourse. It’s a process with an element of trial and error, and will take a fair bit of practice to have mastery over, but it will eventually pay off.
While there’s little doubt that in the modern age most people have at least some familiarity with technology and how to use it, it’s still worth bringing up the fact that learners undertaking script training are taught how to use different forms of media in the workplace regardless. This is not to teach them of basic operations however, and more of how to adapt their previous learnings on how to communicate in this scripted format in a way that conforms to and meets the demands of the sorts of communication that is expected of them. Templates have to be followed, orders have to be taken, and things just have to be setup in such a manner that communicating between employee and customer is as easy as possible.
To expound upon the previous point, text, speech, and mix media have very different demands to meet to be effective in our line of business. They’re setup with the same general rules perhaps, but their execution and methodological doctrines are different; what is acceptable in a written format where a client is afforded a lot of time to read and discern its points is unacceptable to a phone call as time is money. At the same time, different methods of writing need to be employed too; as the language used in a sales pitch is nothing like the language used in customer service – limited instances notwithstanding.
Finally – and this may vary from course to course – learners are given a chance to make their own scripts. We give them the templates they need and all the instructions and objectives required, and allow them the time and practice they require to make the kind of responses and communiques that are expected of them. There are certain criteria that have to be met (which again, vary) but so long as they can meet these criteria, they will display the level of competency required to be pressed into service.
The degree of standardisation usually varies from employer to employer; some requiring a degree of uniqueness from every line, while others are content to have the employees borrow a set template and simply replace the words on them to better suit their needs. We’re more of the former since our research proved that adding a personal touch increased customer satisfaction and thus made them more willing to come back to us for more help.
The course and lessons here allow a learner to learn more than just how to communicate well to customers and clients. It speeds up their ability to produce content and bumps up their overall efficiency and production capacity. They can now process more emails and talk to more clients than they would have been able to prior to the course. This is more of an anecdotal story but seems interesting enough to bring up; but one of our employees was experiencing a lot of trouble trying to talk to their partner prior to taking the course, but during and after they tackled it and the various subjects within, they’ve found that they’re now capable of communicating with them to such a degree that they’ve found greater rapport. In fact last I heard, they were already engaged.
All of this is a consequence of a Script Training program that we modelled part of our training program after; all within legal grounds of course. Efficiency, conciseness, competence, and standardisation. That is the way of business, that is our way of business, and it’s a model that really, works.