6 Reasons Why Call Centers Should Build Culturally Diverse Teams

Faith Ocampo Published on October 10, 2016 Last updated on October 3, 2023

Culturally diverse teams present a great advantage to call centers everywhere. Learn more about these benefits here.

Cultural diversity plays a significant role in shaping the success of businesses. Call centers, as hubs of customer service and communication, are no exception. Building culturally diverse teams within call centers is not only a moral imperative but also a strategic advantage.

In this blog, we will explore six compelling reasons why call centers should prioritize the creation of culturally diverse teams. From improved customer service and enhanced innovation to language proficiency and employee engagement, cultural diversity brings a multitude of benefits to call center operations.

  1. Improved Customer Service

    One of the primary reasons why call centers should build culturally diverse teams is to provide exceptional customer service to their diverse customer base.

    With globalization and the rise of multicultural societies, call centers interact with customers from various cultural backgrounds. By assembling teams that reflect diversity and inclusion, call centers can effectively communicate with and understand their customers on a deeper level.

    Effective communication is at the heart of exceptional customer service. Culturally diverse teams can bridge language and cultural barriers, allowing for more accurate and empathetic interactions with customers. Team members who share the same language, cultural nuances, and preferences as the customers can build trust and rapport more easily.

    They can understand the context behind customer inquiries, address their concerns more effectively, and provide personalized solutions. As a result, customer satisfaction levels soar, leading to increased customer loyalty and positive brand reputation.

    Moreover, workplace diversity in the call center enables a better understanding of cultural nuances and preferences. Different cultures have unique communication styles, etiquette, and expectations.

  2. Innovation and Creativity

    Cultural diversity brings an abundance of perspectives, experiences, and ideas to call centers, fostering a culture of innovation and creativity. By embracing different viewpoints and ways of thinking, call centers can break free from conventional patterns and approach challenges with fresh eyes.

    Culturally diverse teams bring a rich variety of thoughts, beliefs, and problem-solving approaches that can fuel innovation within the organization.

    Moreover, cultural diversity and inclusion within call centers fosters an environment where creativity thrives. When individuals with different cultural backgrounds come together, they bring a wealth of diverse experiences, knowledge, and problem-solving techniques.

    This diversity of thought sparks new ideas, encourages the sharing of different perspectives, and promotes collaborative brainstorming sessions. The synergy generated by culturally diverse teams fosters creativity and helps call centers stay at the forefront of industry trends and customer demands.

  3. Language and Communication Skills

    Building culturally diverse teams allows call centers to tap into a pool of language skills and multilingual talents. This linguistic diversity enables call centers to cater to customers from different regions and provide seamless support in their preferred language.

    With culturally diverse teams, call centers can offer customer service in multiple languages, eliminating language barriers that may hinder effective communication. Customers appreciate being able to interact with call center agents who speak their language fluently, as it enhances the overall customer experience.

    Language proficiency enables call centers to deliver clear and concise information, understand customer queries accurately, and resolve issues promptly. This level of linguistic proficiency builds trust and confidence in customers, as they feel understood and valued.

    Additionally, language proficiency goes beyond customer interactions and extends to communication within the call center. Culturally diverse teams bring linguistic skills that can facilitate seamless communication among team members. This enhances collaboration, knowledge sharing, and problem-solving within the call center.

  4. Employee Engagement and Retention

    Cultural diversity within call center teams positively impacts employee engagement and retention. When employees feel included, valued, and respected for their cultural backgrounds, they are more likely to be engaged and committed to their work.

    A work environment that’s driven by diversity and inclusion fosters a sense of belonging and encourages employees to bring their authentic selves to the workplace.

    Culturally diverse teams create opportunities for learning, growth, and personal development. Employees have the chance to expand their cultural knowledge, develop cross-cultural communication skills, and gain a broader perspective on global issues.

    In terms of employee retention, diversity and inclusion can help reduce turnover rates. Employees who feel valued and supported are more likely to stay with the organization long-term, reducing recruitment and training costs.

    Moreover, culturally diverse teams create a positive work environment where employees celebrate their differences and learn from one another. This inclusive culture fosters strong team dynamics, collaboration, and mutual support, resulting in higher employee satisfaction and retention.

  5. Global Market Expansion

    Cultural diversity within call centers holds the potential to shape the future landscape of customer service. While it serves as a means of delivering exceptional service to existing customers, organizations are increasingly acknowledging its pivotal role in preparing for future opportunities, particularly in the context of global market expansion.

    When entering new markets or expanding existing ones, businesses often encounter unique challenges related to cultural norms, local regulations, and customer preferences. A culturally diverse call center team can serve as an invaluable resource in overcoming these hurdles. Their insights facilitate smoother market entry, reduce the risk of missteps, and accelerate growth.

    Culturally diverse teams possess an inherent capacity to offer invaluable market insights. As businesses set their sights on expanding into new regions and engaging with diverse customer bases, the perspectives and experiences of a multicultural workforce become invaluable.

  6. Positive Brand Image and Reputation

    Workplace diversity in call centers, when approached earnestly, has a profound impact on a company’s brand image and reputation. Companies that champion diversity and inclusion are perceived by customers as socially responsible entities.

    As previously mentioned, workplace diversity and inclusion are not just about how a company is perceived by its external stakeholders but also about attracting and retaining top talent. Prospective employees are increasingly selective in choosing employers who align with their personal values.

    Workplace diversity implies prospective hires will be part of an organization where their unique perspectives and backgrounds are valued and respected. This allure not only attracts skilled professionals but also contributes to higher employee retention rates, as individuals feel a sense of belonging and fulfillment within the organization.

Tips to Improve Cultural Diversity in the Call Center

Cultural diversity is increasingly recognized as a valuable asset in any workplace, and call centers are no exception. Embracing cultural diversity in a call center not only enhances the work environment but also contributes to better customer service and overall business success.

In this section, we will explore a range of tips and strategies to improve workplace diversity in the call center, enabling you to create a harmonious and inclusive environment where every employee feels valued and empowered to contribute their unique talents.

  • Embrace Diversity: Foster a culture that celebrates and values workplace diversity and inclusion. Encourage employees to embrace their unique backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences. Create a safe and inclusive environment where everyone feels respected and valued, regardless of their cultural background.
  • Diverse Hiring Practices: Implement inclusive hiring practices that prioritize diversity. Consider recruiting from a wide range of cultural backgrounds and ensure that job postings and recruitment strategies promote diversity and equal opportunities. Implement blind screening techniques to minimize unconscious biases during the hiring process.
  • Cultural Sensitivity Training: Provide cultural sensitivity training to all employees. This training should educate staff members about different cultures, customs, and communication styles. Emphasize the importance of cultural awareness and sensitivity when interacting with customers or colleagues from diverse backgrounds.
  • Language Training: Offer language training programs to employees to enhance their language skills. Provide opportunities for employees to learn key languages that align with the call center’s customer base. This training can improve communication with customers, build rapport, and enhance customer satisfaction.
  • Cross-Cultural Communication Skills: Provide training on effective cross-cultural communication. Teach employees how to navigate cultural differences, interpret non-verbal cues, and adapt their communication style to accommodate different cultural norms. Encourage active listening and empathy when interacting with customers from diverse backgrounds.
  • Employee Resource Groups: Establish employee resource groups (ERGs) that focus on promoting workplace diversity and inclusion. These groups can create a supportive community for employees from specific cultural backgrounds and organize events, workshops, or initiatives to celebrate diversity and educate others.
  • Diverse Leadership: Promote diversity in leadership positions within the call center. Encourage employees from diverse backgrounds to pursue leadership roles and provide them with opportunities for professional growth and development. Diverse leadership fosters an inclusive work environment and inspires employees from all backgrounds to strive for success.
  • Celebrate Cultural Festivals: Organize events or activities that celebrate cultural festivals and traditions. This could include multicultural potluck lunches, cultural awareness days, or diversity-themed events. These initiatives not only celebrate diversity but also foster understanding and appreciation among employees.
  • Feedback and Suggestions: Encourage employees to provide feedback and suggestions on how to improve workplace diversity and inclusion in the call center. Create channels for open communication, such as suggestion boxes or anonymous surveys, where employees can share their experiences, ideas, and concerns related to diversity and inclusion.
  • Continuous Learning and Evaluation: Maintain a commitment to continuous learning and evaluation of cultural diversity and inclusion efforts. Regularly assess the effectiveness of diversity initiatives, solicit feedback from employees, and make necessary adjustments to improve cultural diversity practices within the call center.

Why Businesses Prefer to Outsource to a Culturally Diverse Company

Outsourcing has become an integral part of many businesses’ strategies to streamline operations, reduce costs, and access specialized expertise. When it comes to outsourcing, businesses often seek partners that not only meet their operational requirements but also offer cultural diversity.

In this section, we will explore why businesses prefer outsourcing to a culturally diverse company and the benefits it brings.

  • Enhanced Communication and Understanding

    Cultural diversity in outsourcing companies brings a wealth of benefits to communication and understanding.

    When working with a culturally diverse team, businesses gain access to individuals who have a deep understanding of various languages, cultural nuances, and communication styles. This diversity allows for more effective communication with clients, customers, and stakeholders from different cultural backgrounds.

    Furthermore, workplace diversity and inclusion brings a heightened understanding of different cultural norms and values.

    A culturally diverse company can navigate cultural nuances, customs, and preferences more effectively, ensuring that communication is respectful and aligned with clients’ cultural expectations. This understanding leads to smoother interactions, fewer misunderstandings, and stronger connections with clients and customers.

  • Global Perspective and Market Insight

    When outsourcing to a culturally diverse partner, businesses gain access to a team with firsthand knowledge and experience in different markets and regions. This insight enables businesses to better understand the cultural, economic, and social dynamics of various target markets.

    Businesses can gain a competitive edge by tapping into the knowledge of a culturally diverse company. The team’s diverse backgrounds and experiences provide unique insights into consumer preferences, market trends, and emerging opportunities in different regions.

    Moreover, a culturally diverse company can provide valuable guidance on navigating cultural barriers and adapting business practices to suit different markets. This expertise helps businesses avoid cultural faux pas, adapt marketing campaigns to resonate with diverse audiences, and tailor products or services to meet specific cultural needs.

  • Innovation and Creativity

    Cultural diversity and inclusion sparks innovation and creativity within outsourcing partnerships. A culturally diverse company brings together individuals with different perspectives, experiences, and problem-solving approaches. This diversity of thought fuels innovation and encourages out-of-the-box thinking.

    Workplace diversity also encourages a culture of creativity and open-mindedness. When team members embrace and celebrate their differences, they create an environment where everyone feels comfortable expressing their unique viewpoints.

    This inclusivity fosters collaboration, inspires creativity, and encourages employees to think creatively without the fear of judgment. As a result, businesses benefit from a constant flow of fresh ideas and innovative solutions.

  • Improved Cultural Adaptability

    Operating in a globalized world requires businesses to adapt to diverse cultural environments. A culturally diverse company possesses the necessary skills and experience to navigate different cultures and adapt to local customs, laws, and business practices.

    This adaptability also extends to customer service, allowing businesses to provide personalized experiences that cater to the cultural preferences of their customers.

In conclusion, businesses prefer outsourcing to culturally diverse companies for several compelling reasons. By embracing diversity and inclusion in their outsourcing partnerships, businesses can gain a competitive advantage, establish stronger connections with clients and customers, and navigate the complexities of a global marketplace with confidence.

Building culturally diverse teams is not just an ethical imperative but also a strategic advantage for call centers. The benefits of cultural diversity, such as improved customer service, enhanced innovation, language proficiency, and employee engagement, contribute to the overall success of call center operations.

By embracing diversity and inclusion, call centers can create a workforce that reflects the multicultural society they serve. This leads to stronger connections with customers, increased creativity and innovation, and higher employee satisfaction and retention.

Embrace cultural diversity in your call center, and unlock the numerous advantages it brings to your team and business.

When choosing an outsourcing partner, find a call center with diverse teams and cultures. Open Access BPO is a multilingual firm offering customer experience, back office, and content moderation services from 6 international offices. With decades of experience, we help brands speak their customers language and break into international markets without worries.

Contact us to know more about our multilingual expertise.

Although managing a diverse team can be challenging, evidence shows that working with people who are different from us can make us happier and more productive.

  1. A mishmash of ideas leads to innovation

    diverse call center coworkers comparing notes

    According to McKinsey, diverse companies are more likely to financially outperform less diverse workplaces. However, most call center managers frown upon the idea of handling a culturally diverse team. After all, it can admittedly be an extremely complex setup. Diversity in the workplace, if poorly managed, can trigger an avalanche of disasters: racial discrimination, ineffective communication, awkward interactions, and others.

    This is probably why only 40% of organizations consider themselves a diverse group, although many companies actively try to hire people from different backgrounds. Staff management will surely be challenging, and leaders must carefully think about how best to handle such teams.

    multilingual call center team leaders brainstorming

    If you can make it work, however, a culturally diverse team can bring you plenty of advantages. Reports after reports have shown that simply putting together people with varying characteristics leads to better organizational performance. Here’s how this happens.

    One of the best ways to solve an existing problem or to come up with a fresh idea is to bring a bunch of people together. With several heads working on a complex issue, you can build solutions that are founded on multiple perspectives. We call this informational diversity.

    This concept does not apply only to teams composed of people with varying expertise or roles; it also applies to culturally diverse groups. People with different beliefs, traditions, and experiences all bring something unique to the table that many others in the company may not know about. Thus, when you consolidate these ideas, you can produce great innovations stemming from numerous angles and perspectives.

  2. Diversity makes organizations smarter

    women leaders in business meeting

    Customer service is a competitive industry. Basically, call centers that can innovate fast, embrace successive technologies effortlessly, and cater to customers’ changing demands are best equipped to win the race.

    Cultural diversity can give you that competitive advantage.

    The power of diversity lies in how it can make us question the notions we’re holding onto. When presented with an opinion that contradicts ours, we widen our thinking and change the way we look at things. Compared with homogeneous groups, a diverse organizational structure can trigger growth and allow companies to make smarter decisions.

  3. Diverse teams are more productive than homogenous ones

    multicultural customer service agents in call center

    According to MIT economist Sara Ellison, “Having a more diverse set of employees means you have a more diverse set of skills, which could result in an office that functions better.”

    This is also true for call centers. By promoting diversity in the workplace, they can provide customer service in several languages, allowing them to work with more clients from anywhere in the world. Aside from driving more revenues, this lets outsourcing companies establish a global presence and optimize the customer experience.

  4. It drives up employee engagement

    call center team leaders in discussion during coffee

    Sodexo, an international brand that tags itself as a provider of quality-of-life services, cites staff diversity as a key in boosting people’s engagement. As they intentionally recruited employees with varying characteristics, cultural background, and gender, Sodexo also focused on promoting inclusion. After analyzing engagement survey results, they found out that people became happier and more productive in a diverse workplace that also bolsters camaraderie among employees.

    In call centers, wherein work can be quite repetitive, diversity can produce a more dynamic environment. This can help break the monotony in the office and create a lively atmosphere.

When choosing an outsourcing partner, find a call center with diverse teams and cultures. Open Access BPO is a multilingual firm offering customer experience, back office, and content moderation services from 6 international offices. With over 13 years of experience, we help brands speak their customers’ language and break into international markets without worries. Contact us to know more about our multilingual expertise.
 

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Faith is a digital media enthusiast aiming to become an active part of the tech world by sharing her insights. She likes to blog about everything digimarketing, technology, and social media.
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