VALERIE M. SMITH
Customer Support Representative
What’s your favorite conference room?
Show us your team!
Team Eastwood ROCKS! We are the pilot team for Groupon+ and BeautyNow.
Valerie makes things happen! From maintaining top scores in Customer Service to orchestrating a last-minute Chinese business delegation office tour…with help from our CEO!
Tell us about your job. What do you?
My position as a Customer Support Representative has changed to a specialized position, where I work with my team on various types of projects from BeautyNow, Costco and much more in the pipeline! I’m also answering callback phone calls and what I love is solving problems in an effective where my customers are surprised that something so complicated can be solved in less than five minutes.
What has been the most challenging thing you’ve worked on in your time here?
The most challenging thing was beginning my journey at Groupon! Only one week to train and know the processes for the Goods Channel and answering the phone calls for the first time and it was Black Friday! I had to take what I know from 15+ years of Customer Service experience from my previous employers and apply my strengths to master the customer service processes at Groupon, Inc.
There are a lot of awesome Groupon stories. What’s yours?
When my Toastmasters colleague, Henry Jiang, contacted me, saying he had some Chinese Business Delegates visiting Chicago and that Groupon was top on the list of places to visit. This call came at the end of October of 2017. I asked when the delegates wanted to visit and he said the following week—which also happened to be earnings week! Did I make it happen? Yes, I did! I had emailed Groupon CEO Rich Williams and he responded immediately, getting me in touch with the right people. Within two business days, the Chinese Business Delegation was scheduled to visit the following week. That was a quick turnaround!
It was an amazing experience to have the Chinese Business Delegation from a high-end executives network called Zhisland take a tour of Groupon and meet key stakeholders at Groupon and have a Q&A session. Being part of the tour and Q& A session was a great experience from an international standpoint.
How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?
Effective communication and understanding the customer’s bottom line. Also, I add value to each and every Groupon customer experience when I speak with them on the phone.
Have you won any awards during your time here?
My Q&A and Customer Service scores are always 95-100% monthly because I add value to each customer I come in contact with on a daily basis. The awards I have obtained so far are 2015 Rep of the Month on my team; November 2016, December 2016, and February 2017 80/80 CSAT winner giving exceptional customer service; and October 2017 Exceptional Customer Service during CS Week.
Valerie with her sister, Sandra, at the Groupon holiday party
So take us back to life pre-Groupon. What were you doing? How did you get here?
Before Groupon, I was working for a credit union as a Human Resources Associate within Learning & Development and Recruiting with my HR Director. My coworker at the credit union received an invite to apply for an onsite interview at Groupon headquarters in Chicago. This coworker knew my energy levels and how I always wanted to work at a global company. He knew this was the opportunity of a lifetime. He emailed me and I applied for a part-time CS position to get in the door with my customer service skills! The rest is history.
What was your first impression of Groupon as a workplace?
My first impression of Groupon was how much things change. If you cannot adapt to change quickly, you have to make a decision if you are in or not!
Tell us about your involvement with Blacks in Groupon!
I joined BIG because I wanted to be a part of the Diversity & Inclusion movement happening at Groupon. I’m the Marketing and Communication Lead and I’m looking forward to spreading the voices within BIG onto the People Blog and other marketing channels.
If you could do any other job for a day, what would it be and why?
Talent Development: I have a passion to train and mentor talent to see them grow within their strengths and placed in roles that would allow them to shine!
What’s your favorite Groupon memory?
Seeing All For One perform on the first floor of our building in Chicago It was so much fun. It was an afternoon full of FUN!
Tell us something about you that might surprise us!
I’m a professional flautist!
Who or what inspires you?
Speakers like Oprah, Les Brown, Lisa Nichols, Eric Thomas, John C. Maxwell, Jim Rohn and Tony Robbins! I love every last speaker for being transparent on what it means to be intentional with action, behind your goals. I live that daily. I mean what I say, I mean what I do!
What keeps you busy outside of work?
I’m involved in Toastmasters, taking on leadership roles, improving speaking techniques, and am a social media queen training others on how to utilize social media channels. There is one passion I do have and that is training individuals to develop their own personal brand!