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One of the coolest contact center jobs around!

We are working with JM Bullion in their search for a Director of Customer Experience based in sunny Dallas, TX. This job involves building and leading a state-of-the-art customer contact center.

JM Bullion is an online retailer of gold and silver products, from bars to rounds to coins. The firm deals exclusively in physical bullion – selling gold or silver that is delivered directly to their retail client’s door.

HARRY’S COMMENTS: Throughout the 1980s, my father-in-law was a direct report to John Reed at Citibank. It’s always fascinating to hear him talk about the Latin American debt crisis or the early careers of today’s Wall Street stars like Jamie Dimon.

To hear my father-n-law tell it, the world’s most competitive businesses are those in which the product is money. Take banking, for example. If you and I both run competing banks, then our product is basically dollars. A dollar is a dollar: They’re all the same, which relegates all competition between you and me to TWO things …

PRICING and SERVICE

To win, I can either 1.) Lend money more cheaply than you, or 2.) I can pamper the hell out of every customer with phenomenal service.

This role with JM Bullion is essentially about the latter.

JM Bullion has already established itself as a purveyor of the world’s highest quality precious metals products. The firm works directly with mints and distributors, and it inspects all new inventory very carefully, ensuring that its clients receive only the highest quality metals. Its coins come direct from the mint in brand-new, sealed tubes, and the majority of its products are indicated as “brand-new” on its product pages — meaning that they ship tightly sealed in plastic, fresh from the mint.

As a USA-based metals merchant, JM Bullion enjoys full accreditation from all state and federal government agencies, and its clients have the peace of mind knowing that they are dealing with a fully licensed metals distributor that values safety and security as much as the most anal-retentive collector.

Obviously, their clients appreciate the product quality …

… yet pristine, promptly shipped products are just table stakes.

In the future, the greatest source of competitive advantage for precious metals etailers will be customer experience; making retail investors feel better about themselves because of their relationship with their metals vendor.

When you think about it, when a customer or prospect spends time with your business (your people, your products, your processes, your technology), you are basically in the hospitality business. If any of these customer touch points is “inhospitable,” then you run a serious risk of losing them – and worse, having that person tell ten friends about his negative experience with you.

Do you know what servant leaders do?

Servant leaders do seven things: Lead; Create; Inspire; Listen; Encourage; Contribute; and Initiate. And they do it with humility. And do you know what? All customers and prospects want to be led by someone who does these things — proactively, if possible, in ways that smartly leverage everything the organization already knows about the customer, so that customers never have to tell it the same thing twice.

This allows the company to anticipate customer needs.

JM Bullion’s typical customer leans far right, politically. Typically, they skew older male with the average age being 50. These guys follow the news very closely and they are very financially savvy. Obviously, if one is a metals investor, one tends to have relatively little confidence in the commercial and governmental institutions that surround us.

That doesn’t make them curmudgeons. That makes them bearish.

Not too long ago, Michael Lewis authored a best-selling book called Flash Boys, premised on the idea that the stock market is rigged. Not a new idea. In fact, most stock market historians will freely admit that the crash of 1987 was a mystery because nobody really knows why it happened. And my father-in-law has always maintained that historically, stock prices have been driven by three things (2 mathematical; 1 psychological): Earnings; Interest rates; and Capital inflows (the amount of money pouring into the stock market).

In other words, he’s a fan of the “greater fool theory.”

I’m a tiny bit off-topic here because, candidates, I want you to understand that metals investors aren’t crazy, gun-toting, right wing, doom and gloom Tea Baggers. They are rational guys and gals who cannot understand, for example, why until December 2013 shares of Amazon continued to rise when the company’s economics were such a train wreck. My guess is that Amazon investors were simply buying the “story.”

Gold and Silver’s stories are much more straightforward.

As the leader of JM Bullion’s contact center, you’ll be responsible for developing and supporting a culture that personifies JM Bullion’s brand of hospitality, and you will understand that your people are the key to success. As such, you will spend an inordinate amount of time training your team not only in effective customer service techniques, but you’ll teach them how to be a go-to resource for trends and information. Your people will need to live and breathe metals investing, but that does not mean that you must be a whiz in economics.

You merely need to learn the lingo.

A typical day for one of your reps will be to answer inbound calls, chatting with customers online and solving problems, all the while looking at social media dashboards to see what is being said about the brand online and managing that conversation in a way that is friendly, helpful, and brand appropriate. JM Bullion is pursuing new, “best of class” technology platforms to support the contact center, all of which will provide reps with dashboards to track everything.

You’ll be responsible for shaping the customer access strategy whether customers are placing orders, exchanging orders, checking account status or seeking the resolution to a problem. Your reps will be serving well informed and diverse customers and will need to adjust to frequent changes in products, services, and technologies while operating in a time sensitive, multimedia environment.

You’ll need to establish a world-class climate for service as well as a climate for employee well-being. All of this will flow naturally from hiring people who might otherwise be the firm’s customers.

This will be your baby.

And it will be up to you to ensure that the contact center reps are accessible, courteous, responsive, prompt, well-equipped, proactive, commitment oriented ethical, and do things right the first time. Obviously, that’s a tall order. But JM Bulllion will give you the authority and resources to be successful.

If all of this sounds fun and exciting to you — and you’ve got the chops to pull it off! — then we’d love it if you applied below.

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Responsibilities

  • Collaborate with IT, content management and product management teams and business stakeholders to deliver the requirements of an exceptional customer experience.
  • Play an active role in the Direct to Consumer leadership team, communicating regularly with Marketing, Product Content, Merchandising, Order Fulfillment, IT, and other departments.
  • Assist with the development and continual refinement of the customer experience strategy.
  • Create key performance metrics to measure customer experience and brand awareness. Click here for example.
  • Design, maintain and continually optimize departmental processes that address business needs and that ultimately yield an excellent and brand-appropriate customer experience.
  • Develop, build and scale in-house customer contact centers that handle
    call, email, and chat traffic.
  • Demonstrate and foster a sense of urgency and entrepreneurial commitment to achieving goals.
  • Build a strong, positive team culture and create disciplined groups that work well together.
  • Recruit, train, and lead an exceptional customer experience team.
  • Serve as a primary customer advocate within the organization.
  • Manage the Customer Experience Department P&L.
  • Capture customer behavior and fashion tendencies, analyze results, and develop cross-departmental recommendations.
  • Partner with loss prevention to minimize online fraud activity.
  • Oversee processing of all Direct to Consumer returns and exchanges.

Qualifications

  • BA or BS required. MBA degree a plus.
  • 5+ years in customer service management, preferably with 2+ years of director-level experience (preference of retail e-commerce and fashion experience).
  • Experience in staffing and managing a highly motivated and effective customer service team.
  • Must appreciate the customer base, brand, and culture.
  • Experience in structuring and facilitating customer research.
  • Results oriented leader who is also willing to be “hands on” when necessary.
  • Must have a strong knowledge of social media and customer support technologies including: phone systems, CRM platforms, workforce management software, etc.
  • Excellent communicator with superior verbal, written, interpersonal, and presentation skills.
  • Must have a strong desire to continuously improve the customer experience across all functions.
  • Ability to think critically and problem solve in a fast- paced, entrepreneurial environment.
  • Experience with executing loyalty programs is a plus.

UPDATE: THIS SEARCH IS CLOSED.

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Harry Joiner

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