Education | Master of Education – Library Science
Professional Experience | Public school teacher – 10 years
Virtual contact center education / curriculum design – 4 years
Once a Teacher, Always a Teacher
As a child, Crystal Holmes had made up her mind. “I always knew I would be a teacher.”
For 10 years, she taught in public schools. Then, her sister-in-law, who was an instructor for Working Solutions, told her about opportunities at the company.
At first, Crystal was skeptical. In fact, she once said she would never leave her teaching job.
Hedging her bets—and seeing remote training as a way to earn extra money—she did a two-month trial run as a virtual instructor before school started again.
“I absolutely loved it. Teaching adults is like teaching kids in that both, deep down, want to learn.
“It’s an inherent thing, whether in a school environment or not. When I figured that out, I said ‘I can do this.’”
Crystal’s goal is to make remote learning engaging and rewarding for her students. She knows being animated—plus a well-designed curriculum—are key to knowledge retention.
She, too, finds it rewarding, especially in the feedback she receives: “I loved your class. It was awesome.” “I was pleasantly surprised.” “I thought it was going to be horrid. But it was really great.”
After a year as a virtual contract instructor, Crystal joined the company as senior agent education specialist, a role in which she develops the curriculum for other instructors.
In her four years of work here, she has schooled agents or designed classes for every key industry.
As she likes to say: “You can throw any industry at me, because it all comes down to what’s the best way to develop instruction for each program.”
Flipping the Classroom
There are new twists in education. Then, there are virtual flips.
“We call it ‘Flip the Classroom,’” said Crystal. “Instead of teachers being the sole focus, we make learning self-paced. And we’re getting great feedback from the agents.”
The new self-paced learning software is one more tool at Working Solutions University, where everything that’s taught resides—virtually.
Mixing It Up
Each class begins in a webinar, where remote agents hear one another and share a screen with the instructor.
Then, as Crystal said, “We mix it up. Break. Flip the class.” Still online, agents use the self-guided instruction and later rejoin classmates.
Being able to test the software before starting work for a healthcare client made for a successful engagement.
“I’ve seen the agents come through the class, graduate and go do their jobs, and almost have immediate success.”
“Education is my passion. There is nothing else I’ll ever do in my life.”
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