What Can Tim Tebow Teach Us in Collections?

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Ok, I’ll admit it; I have had the conversation with myself (and with my wife) regarding how I can be more like Tim Tebow.  No matter what I do, I’m not going to get taller, faster, more athletic, better looking, or have a fan base of millions.

However, there are many things Tim Tebow can teach those of us in the collections and contact center world that can immediately change our fortunes.

1.    Just because it doesn’t look exactly like what you’re used to, doesn’t mean it isn’t the best option for you to win. The Denver Broncos were not winning consistently but then and had the vision to give a new style of quarterbacking a chance.  Tebow’s style is very different, yet he turned around Denver’s fortunes and created a winning environment. This is not unlike the movement to cloud-based solutions.  There are still some who have concerns about trying a new cloud-based approach, but they are quickly getting left behind.

In order to win consistently, you must be a leader – not a laggard.  Denver’s coaches understood that Tebow’s athleticism, winning pedigree and commitment to his teammates provided them the best chance to win despite what some perceived as a risk.  But moving to the cloud isn’t risky.  A contact solution in the cloud is new and different, but it’s actually the safer strategy given all its’ advantages.

2. Flexibility is both a necessity and a huge advantage in most anything you do.  Tebow is hard to defend against because he can pass, he can run, he can scramble, etc…  Tebow teaches us that being one-dimensional can be limiting.  In the collections world, you need that same kind of flexibility in such uncertain times.  You’re better prepared to achieve great results when you have on-demand capacity that flexes up or down to meet your needs.  Plus, when you can leverage multiple best-of-breed tools and channels interchangeably in a single-platform, you’ve created superior flexibility to get the best results with the least amount of effort and complexity.

3. Getting locked-in on a single receiver or solution can be dangerous.  Tebow and other young QB’s tend to “lock-in” and commit to a receiver because it feels comfortable.  Yet, once the QB throws the ball with this “tunnel vision” it regularly brings a negative result that cannot be reversed.  This relatively blind commitment is costly.  Similarly, from an ownership perspective, Denver’s thinking about whether to commit to Tebow as the long-term QB of the franchise.  The problem is, once they sign him to a multi-million dollar contact for multiple years, it will set the organization back tremendously if he doesn’t end up being an All-Pro.

It’s similar to writing a check to install on-premise hardware and software. You can’t get it back, and it’s going to take many months or years of resources’ time and effort to really get it right.  That would all be wasted.  With a cloud-based solution, you’ll always be able to make a change and improve your team without having to worry about sunk costs.

4. You’ve got to have the right tools, but just having the tools isn’t enough.  You need to work on your mechanics to be the best.  Tebow’s poor throwing mechanics causes mistakes and turnovers.  The other problem with Tebow is that his mechanics are very hard to change or improve given how he’s played quarterback all his life.

In the contact center world, poor mechanics results in sub-par results and lost money.  With respect to the “mechanics” of your contact center, Cloud solutions constantly improve technology with upgrades, and some companies, like SoundBite, provide ongoing strategy consultants that help you optimize the “mechanics” of your campaigns and strategies.  This yields top tier results!  A cloud-based solution is fundamentally built to be flexible and evolve over time as your needs, your client’s needs, and the market needs all change.

Whether you’re a Tim Tebow fan or not, there’s a lot to learn from him in regards to life and in business.  Applying some of these lessons is as close as I’m likely going to get to being more “Tebow-like”.  I was also thinking, isn’t it a bit ironic that there are similarities, to be drawn between Tebow and solutions that are in the cloud?

For more calling center expertise, periodically check in on SoundBite's new blog: Collections in the Cloud.

Matt Edmunds

Matt Edmunds brings 20 years of hands-on industry and operational experience to his role at SoundBite Communications. As the Vice President of Financial Services and Collections, Edmunds leads sales, marketing, services, and product development efforts tailored for these industries. Prior to joining SoundBite, Edmunds was senior vice president of bankcard operations for Outsourcing Solutions, Inc, where he managed all facility, personnel, strategy and operations decisions for four call center sites with 600 full-time employees. In this role, he was a frequent user of SoundBite’s solution. Prior to joining OSI, Edmunds spent almost nine years at Capital One Financial Corporation leading various customer care and collections strategies. Matt Edmunds can be reached at medmunds@soundbite.com and LinkedIn. Follow him on twitter at@MattEdmunds10.

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