By Matt MCcue
“Moments of crisis are opportunities”
“From call center to successful CEO”
Based in Dallas, Staci Tubbs serves as a chair for the CEO Organization, Vistage and is the CEO of her own business. At school she was a young scientist – studying biology and chemistry at Cornell.
Tubbs then began her career in a call center!
The attention to detail and curiosity learnt from science were applied to human and analytical challenges found in most call centers.
Staci now says “Call centers get a bad rap, they are actually a great place.”
Tubbs pegs the call center market size at $52 billion. Many customer service locations are still located in the U.S. despite the sense it might be otherwise. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 2.36 million people in the U.S. work at call centers and by 2020 we expect to see this grow to nearly three million jobs. The nature of the position is that every day brings a new series of dilemmas that need solutions. “People don’t call into say, “You did a great job on my bill last month,” explains Tubbs. “People are calling with problems, and they want you to fix it.”
Tubbs’ career path has allowed her to leverage her data-driven science mind with her keen sense of understanding people. From 2002 to 2011, she worked for ACS, a Xerox company, and rose from General Manager to the Vice President of Sales and Integration. As an executive, she guided 6,000 front line employees located in 12 global sites. During her tenure, her department’s annual revenue jumped from $60M to $250M. “I like stuff that is blowing up in a good way,” says Tubbs. In 2012, Staci became the CEO of business process outsourcing company, Stellar North America. In the following years, supporting clients like Cirque du Soleil, she saw the business grow from $0 to $20M in annual revenue.
Her success has come as a result of communicating to her employees that they are part of something bigger. Tubbs uses moments of crisis as opportunities…. Take winter storms; While most people grump about the weather, Tubbs has repeatedly conveyed to her roadside assistance employees the importance of being in their desk seats during blizzards, because that’s when customers call in needing help. “There was a clear imperative that you have to be on the phones when the storm hits,” says Tubbs. It is in moments like these when the call center employees became saviors to the stranded.
As an experienced leader in Strategic Planning, Tubbs facilitates sessions during which teams identify opportunities for business growth and areas for improvement. These sessions give CEOs a space to collaborate freely. “For a lot of CEOs, and I fell into this bucket, you can’t have certain conversations about what may happen in your business with your team because it will distress them and may disrupt the business,” says Tubbs. “Sometimes we CEOs need an outside team, to hold us accountable and have the tough conversations.”
One way Tubbs has extended her brand is through her .CEO Identity Page that showcases her services, highlights her career accomplishments and links directly to her website. “It is another component in the overall brand management piece,” says Tubbs.
Outside of work, Tubbs shares what she’s learned with Girls, Inc. of Dallas, an organization that provides girls in underserved parts of the community with access to research-based education programs, on everything from math and science to leadership training. “I had reached a point in my life where I was cognizant of the outstanding opportunities I have, had and wanted to give back,” says Tubbs. “I am honored to support this outstanding organization.”
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