Susan lives in the great state of Georgia, in the Atlanta area, and describes her ten years with TeleReach Corporate as working in a company with a corporate culture of being a family. “We are a virtual company and are casual in a way that you just want to be open with others and help them be their best. You learn to love people, like people, and accept people just by the sound of their voices.”
Susan’s journey to a career in sales in our virtual call center was not a straight path. Susan has a master’s degree in social work from Columbia and began working in the field of social work after graduating college. Susan recalls, “I had worked briefly on a campaign in a call center with Mothers Against Drunk Drivers. That’s when I realized that my background in social work did lend itself to making these outbound calls because I liked talking to people. It was kind of fun. Before I started with TeleReach, I was at a point in my life when I was going through a lot of changes and I remember being on a mission to redefine myself. I didn’t want to go back into social work. I had already started to look in a different direction.”
Q: Were you looking to work from home or were you just looking? How long have you been working from home?
A: “About 10 years, I started working for TeleReach in 2010 for seven years, then I took a brief break and came back. I found this job at a time of new beginnings, when I had just moved into a new house, just gotten a divorce and I had two little kids. When I first saw it, it was hard for me to believe it could be real because there were so many listings of jobs that were not real. But then I started to check it out and came to realize that I really could work a real job from home with this company. Finding this job with TeleReach, not only allowed me to take care of my kids, it allowed me to redefine myself. I felt very modern, very innovative. It was very exciting.”
Q: It was a big move for you to change careers from social work to sales. What was that like in those early days?
A: “I started as an appointment setter and then moved into another position as trainer, and then I left for a while and came back again as an appointment setter. It was different working from home. It took some getting used to people not being able to see me. This career move was much to my parent’s chagrin at first, because they had spent a lot of money on my education. I think they grew to learn that my new career really fit better with my lifestyle. Part of the move was out of necessity and partly because I wanted something different. When you look at my degree, it did lend itself to training. Part of the degree was geriatrics which I did for a long time, and part of it was industrial social welfare so it melded quite well into the training position.
It was an interesting transition but I like people so it was OK. I went into social work because I like to help people. At TeleReach we help people too. We help companies grow all across America. I believe so much in what we do and although it sounds a little corny, it really makes me feel good to be a part of a worthy cause. As a trainer, I liked helping people succeed and as a company, I believe in helping other businesses grow. From that standpoint, it’s not really that much different from social work. We’re just helping people in a different way.”
Q: There’s a tremendous amount of change going on out there in today’s job market. What advice do you have for people who are considering a career change like you made?
A: “Things have changed a lot since I started working from home, however, some people are still hesitant about work from home jobs. In our industry, our company stands out in a lot of ways from other companies, and that’s what makes TeleReach such a great place to work. Plus, it’s much easier to stay healthy in the midst of a pandemic since we don’t go anywhere or need to go anywhere.
Family. You all are like a loving family. We’ve been through growing pains together and we just keep getting better. Although this last year has seen such dramatic change in the country, things didn’t really change that much here at TeleReach. I feel good about the future. I know that we will have a great year in the new year and all of us will make a lot of money.
Variety. We are literally learning new things all the time, new accounts or new technology. I got kind of spoiled working almost exclusively on one big account for a long time, and now we don’t have that account, so I’ve had to venture out and take on something new. It was like jumping in a pool of cold water at first, but once I got into it, I know that’s it’s a good thing to learn something new. There’s always something interesting. When my kids say something about new technology, I don’t have to feel like an idiot. I can say – yeah, I know.
Abundance of work. Some of our work went away during COVID but other work rose up and took its place. There’s always been plenty of work. Through the years, the mix of work we have had has changed, and especially during this last year of COVID, but in spite of that, we still have plenty of work as well as a great variety of work.
Transparency. The transparency of our process is part of the integrity we have as a company and the pride we take in delivering a quality product to our clients. We send our clients the sound files, not just a written transcription of our calls. The people who work here take pride in the quality of our work.
Great clients. The companies we have as clients are good, solid, reputable companies, and many of them have been our clients for many years. I feel good about the clients we work for.”
Q: What are some of the changes you’ve experienced during the years you’ve worked with TeleReach from home?
A: “I started the job at first to take care of my kids, but later in life, I needed to work from home to take care of my parents. My kids grew up and didn’t need me to take care of them anymore, but then my parents grew older and both of my parents got very ill. So TeleReach has really ended up being a full life cycle job for me. First for my kids, then for my parents, and now for me. Working from home helps me to take care of myself in the middle of this pandemic. I would not have liked to go to work outside of the home during this last year.”
Q: What were the benefits you gained from coming into Houston for coaching?
A: “For one thing, when I came back from being gone for a while, coming into Houston helped me to get my sea legs back. At that time, I also had a breakthrough having to do with the technology that I don’t think I would have seen if I hadn’t been working with someone in person. It was nice also because I got to meet so many people in person.”
Q: Any tips about cold calling?
A: “People should get away from thinking about what we do here as telemarketing. What we do is business to business outreach. We’re offering something that could potentially make business life better and help businesses grow and compete better. We perform this work with integrity, with a virtual corporate family, all from the comfort of home. We need to spread the love. We need more really wonderful appointment setters like the people who work here now. Like the song says, we are family – and we fly like birds of a feather. It is a win-win all the way around.”
About the Author
Tracie Chancellor, CEO and Founder of TeleReach Corporate, national business to business call center specializing in sales appointment setting and lead generation, based in Houston, Texas. Chancellor is an MBA graduate of the University of Houston with over 20 years hands-on sales and marketing experience, working with privately-held businesses, universities, non-profit organizations, as well as Fortune businesses in the business to business marketing space.