Ladislau Batalha: “Customer Centricity is not a trend, it is a necessity”



Ladislau Batalha: We spoke with Ladislau Batalha, founder of Lab Experience and blogger at CX Blog. Ladislau is recognized as passionate about the sector, in which he has been working for more than 20 years in different continents, like many – according to himself – he arrived by chance, stayed and built his successful career. “It was a mere coincidence”, he told us. In this interview, he shares his vision about the role of people in the sector, before and after the pandemic and more.

What was the opportunity that brought you to the world of the contact centre?

Ladislau Batalha: Like many people, I started working in the sector with no intention of staying. My background is in engineering. I worked in an organisation linked to outsourcing and HR. They were looking for someone who had experience in queue management and sizing and also soft skills and that’s how I got started, that was 24 years ago. I arrived, I was passionate about it, and I dedicated my entire career to it, but it was a mere coincidence. I arrived and I was passionate about it, so then I dedicated my entire career to it, but it was a mere coincidence.

What was it that you were passionate about?

Ladislau Batalha: What I am passionate about is something that has to do with meeting people and helping them and also interacting with other cultures. Also, to facilitate better communication in order to be happier. That is my passion and this is a sector that has constant challenges in which we have to deliver a customer experience with very clear objectives.

How do you cope with all the changes there are?

Ladislau Batalha: Very good, this is a young industry. At the same time, that same youth creates novelties all the time. We are the first to adopt technologies for our clients and collaborators.

Do you remember any experience?

Ladislau Batalha: Yes, for example, when I worked in São Paulo, back in 2015, we implemented Snapchat to deliver training content. At that time it was a novelty and in a month we developed a model to train collaborators with a platform that was in line with their habits.

What is your method for approaching work teams?

Ladislau Batalha: I really like working with people, talking with them to understand what they need and how.  I would measure the impact of what’s going on. But a big point that concerns me today is that many organizations still don’t understand this. And that is why two-hour PowerPoint trainings are still planned.

What are your suggestions for approaching the training?

Ladislau Batalha: I think the best approach is to respect what people live in their experience. Let us return to the example of San Paulo. An agent commuting to work; he does his errands, communicates through digital media, it is unlikely that when he arrives at his position he will concentrate in a room where a PowerPoint is projected with training contents. This is because he is used to interacting and learning in a multitasking and digital way.

What is your role today in this world of experiences?

Ladislau Batalha: My activity is focused on the client. I think that, lately, we came also to discover the importance of employee experience. Personally, I think that at this point we are talking about the central role of people. The centre is always people and this is why I think we have to have a holistic perspective. This is because everything is focused on the interaction between people, even with technology and automation. At the end of the day we know that people are the centre.

And what can you tell us about the employee experience?

Ladislau Batalha: It goes to show us that we have to focus on our teams. If we think that the client should have the best screen, the best processes, we cannot have our people working with less. This is a big concern that is still not resolved.

Do you think that people centricity is a trend?

Ladislau Batalha: I think it is a necessity. If we look at the pandemic, we see the lessons it left us on this. From the home office, the management of decentralized teams and the enormous pressure that the agents had to endure. It is right then, that the urgent need to start looking at people became evident. Unthinkable things happened, in some countries people are now paid to go to interviews. If we don’t look at people, we are going to run out of people to deliver experiences.

Before we say goodbye, what is an experience for you?

Ladislau Batalha: I think it is an action in which we get involved, that encloses the interaction, the atmosphere and that will leave us with a memory. That is an experience for me.