When have you seen someone change their position — and suddenly change their perspective?

The arrogant superstar suddenly brought low? The ardent Trade Unionist promoted to manager?

The contract manager for the contact centre was at breaking point.

‘Those bastards! We told them about this change three weeks ago. They haven’t trained, they haven’t resourced, they’re blaming the service, and I know they’re going to use this as an excuse at the monthly performance review meeting — even thought I’m sure they’re fiddling the figures too. I’ll have that contact centre director’s guts for garters!’

Sure enough, in the end the director was eventually fired by the supplier, (though now I am doubting myself whether he actually used that colourful Tudor phrase).

(In fact, this is a cunning tactic of outsourcers. They land a big deal, bank the annual income, then install a ‘relationship manager’ with compensation based entirely on upselling new services. As a consequence, resource is directed away from the bread-and-butter work, which naturally deteriorates.

When enough anger is being generated to jeopardise additional sell-on to that client, and they’re on the edge of contractual performance penalties, the corporate centre swoops in, and takes decisive action by firing the relationship manager.

In comes the new relationship manager, able to talk refreshingly honestly about the prior poor performance, be open about the horrifying ‘slackness’ they’ve discovered, and pledge a new broom to start afresh with a clean slate.

And a new set of upselling targets.)

Six months later, I heard through the grapevine that there was a new outsourced contact centre director — and it was the former council contract manager!

I gave him a call. ‘Those bastards in the services just made a dozen process changes at the busiest time of year, they didn’t inform me, and they won’t properly resource the additional shifts I’m having to field. The absolute sods!’

He wasn’t being ironic: in the blink of an eye, his perspective had changed 180 degrees.

Have you ever experienced this perspective change, when your context changes? Have you ever done it yourself?

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