Tomorrow is the last day of training for my new job as a customer care representative for AT&T Mobile. This morning we took our first LIVE calls. Argh. My first live call lasted over an hour and turned out to be my only live call. Someone with a very strong Indian accent calling about a phone that had been ordered but hasn't arrived. I had trouble understanding what he was saying, to start with. Then, mid stream we switched horses. I didn't catch on to this fact until some time after customer number two started talking about cell phone number two. I hadn't noticed that a second person had come on the line with a new problem, so I was trying to figure out what phone number two had to do with phone number one.
At an early point in the conversation I almost got up, put the headset down on the desk and walked away. I didn't. I finally realized what was going on and both the caller and I were quite relieved. By the end of the conversation we were both laughing.
What fun. More live phone calls tomorrow morning. If I'm really lucky maybe I'll have to have emergency dental surgery (causing me to miss the live calls).
My instructor came by after the call and told me, "You needed that call." She meant that I needed that particular kind of phone call to show me that it wasn't the end of the world and that I could, in fact, handle that sort of unusual situation. If I could handle that, theoretically I can handle all the routine types of calls I'll be getting. I think she was right.
We graduate tomorrow (after more live calls and a pot-luck lunch). Next Monday we start the two-week "transition" phase, which means lots of live calls with lots of help and supervision. If we survive that they'll set us loose to work among the rest of the "agents." God help me.
On a slightly related note: I had been working within five miles of home for several years. Because of this, I hadn't had much need, except on rare occasions, to drive more than about 40 miles per hour. Seriously. But now I'm commuting, driving 22 miles twice a day. The speed limit for most of that distance is 70 miles per hour. Since I started this commute, five weeks ago, I find that I now have a difficult time slowing down!
I have driven the local streets hundreds of times without any problems. Now I find myself going around corners much too fast! This freaks me out a little. Why am I having any trouble at all readapting to the in-town speed limits after coming home from work? I'm thinking about that and, if I figure it out, I'll surely let you know.
I'm going to go finish preparing my Mediterranean pasta salad for tomorrow's pot luck. Then I'm going to go to bed and forget about tomorrow's live calls.