Toni C.

Smiling woman in front of red flowers and an image of a car in the lower right.

How did you hear about the Arise® Platform?

A friend of mine told me about the Arise® Platform back in 2016. I had shared with him that I was looking for flexible opportunity and after telling him what I was thinking of doing, he was like, “No, you don’t want to do that. Try out Arise.”

To be honest, when I went to the website, there was a lot of information, and I got overwhelmed, so I shut it down.

I was working for our electric company here in Florida, and then something happened with my job, and I thought to myself, “Okay, I need to have options.”

So, I went back to the Arise® Platform, and I took my time, read the information, and I was like, “Wow, this is a perfect fit! And it will help me transition from corporate America to having my own business and true work-life balance.”

That’s how I started using the Arise® Platform in 2017.

What program are you servicing, and why do you like the program?

Right now, I am servicing the roadside assistance program, and provide Chat Support services.

However, when I first started servicing, my first client was the tax software client, which fit me perfectly because in corporate America, I worked in the retirement and savings department and knew all about 1099 forms and things like that. I was able to relate to customers and was just like, “I love this!”

I was just overjoyed because I was doing something I loved and was able to help people. I was especially able to do that with some of the older people who were trying to get help with using the tax software.

It was great. It was really great.

Tell us about a time when you feel you have helped or had a positive impact on someone because of the customer service you provided.

There have been a lot of those times.

I have also serviced the food retail client and the jewelry client. But with the roadside assistance program, it is special—being able to help other people.

I am a kind and loving person, and I have had a couple people call where they cry because they cannot believe the compassionate customer service they get from me.

I love just being able to relate to people when they are talking about an issue. I’m real with others when I help them, and I am honest. If I can’t help you, I’ll tell you. I’m not going to sugarcoat it. I’m sincere and have gotten a lot of compliments from customers too.

When I service, I always imagine I am helping my mom or my dad or my brothers—and I still look at it that way.

My dad is 83 years-old, and he’s needed roadside assistance before—I was with him once. But the rudeness and impatience he got from someone over the phone because he was nervous and fumbling around was horrible. I had to get on the phone because that’s not how you treat people. I said, “You’re providing customer service. That’s an honor to be able to service and help people.” The person ended up apologizing.

I just know how I would want my mom or dad to be treated—with the utmost kindness and respect, you know?

What do you like most about providing customer service for people?

Like I said before, when I worked in corporate America, I worked in HR, in the retirement and savings department, and I was a retirement specialist. And of course, I would deal with people who lost their spouses and had to tell them about their benefits. But my boss said, “You were born to do this because you’re just—you, and honestly—too nice sometimes (laughs).”

There’s something about helping people when they know you care—and you have to let them know that you are sincere and are not going to rush them off the phone.

You just be real, you know? It’s not what you say—It’s how you say it.

Even while providing chat support and helping agents, I tell them how to move through the call quickly and be kind. Kindness is what the person is going to remember. That, and how you got them through the call.

You sometimes have to guide the person and let them know at the end of the day, “We’re going to get this taken care of, together.”

What does it feel like for you when you can build connections with people over the phone?

I love it—and you just don’t understand how much. A lot of agents say: “Oh, I’m so glad I got you. Every time I speak with you, I learn something new. And I say to them, “That’s why I am here.”

I have gotten that a lot, and I have helped so many agents. They come back to me and say, “You told me to try this, and it worked! That always feels great!

If I make a mistake, I let them know that too. We all have our moments. They’re taking phone calls, and it can be tough. I know it because I’ve taken phone calls too!

Thinking back to your days when you were answering calls for customers, how did it feel to answer a call knowing that you helped a customer?

This is even greater than helping Service Partners!

Like I said, when I first started servicing the roadside assistance client, I liked making connections with the customer, and fixing their issues was important to me. I enjoyed going above and beyond for them because I know what it’s like when you need help on the road. I know what it’s like to feel stranded.

I got stuck in Florida on I-4 at midnight— this is a true story— and when I called my roadside assistance company, the person who answered the phone calmed me down and said that I was going to be all right and stayed on the phone with me until the service provider arrived. And that made a huge difference for me because I was alone and afraid.

So, I know how that feels when a woman calls in and she’s with her children. It means the world to me to tell them, “I got you. I’m going to get you someone out there as quickly as I possibly can.”

And if they ask me to stay on the phone with them while they wait, I am going to stay on the line because the most important thing for me is to make sure they are safe—and to make sure I can get what they’re looking for, so they want to call again. And when they call back, they know they’re going to get assistance because of the experience that they had with someone from the roadside assistance client.

How do you think the Arise® Platform has helped you grow professionally?

It has given me work life balance.

It has given me the opportunity to learn more things than I could when I was in corporate America. Even when I serviced tax software client and the jewelry client, I just learned things that I may be able to use every day, and it’s like, “Wow, this is what makes the business really work.” And you feel good to be a part of it.

Is there anything else you would like others to know about the Arise® Platform or the program you service?

Don’t get overwhelmed—because Arise has a great platform, and it’ll provide you with everything you need from certification, to servicing as an agent, to the potential to provide support services like Chat PF.

They provide everything that helps you be successful. It’s up to you to make that commitment. Once I started using the Arise® Platform, everything was there to help me.

And remember, be empathetic and compassionate. When you provide customer service, that’s just what you do. You understand what other people are going through. Be kind—and pass it along.

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