21st november 2014 at 18:00
“What I love most is reading kids’ letters. We get amazing letters from kids with fantastic drawings and stories in them; they show incredible imagination and creativity, and often real entrepreneurship too! They remind me why we are here and always put a smile on my face.”
Monika Lütke-Daldrup started working in LEGO®Consumer Services 15 years ago. She is originally from Germany, although she hardly recalls the relocation. Back then, she was tasked with setting up the first German speaking Consumer Service team in the Slough office in the United Kingdom.
“I have always worked in the UK, and probably feel as much British as I feel German nowadays. I must be one of the very few Germans who drink tea with milk instead of coffee,” she reflects.
Now, she oversees all three consumer Contact Centers: The Slough, UK base, the Connecticut, United States base, and the Seoul, South Korea base. This means that although she’s in the UK, she travels – a lot.
“I have seen a huge amount of change from when we had a very localized setup working with basic systems supported by pen, paper and fax machines - to the global setup with standardized systems and processes and work-sharing between the different centers that we have today,” explains Monika.
Normally, these Contact Centers are home to around 200 employees who answer phone calls, emails, and online requests from customers around the world. However, during the run-up to the holidays, known as “high season”, the number of frontline staff nearly doubles.
“Preparation for high season is always a big job. Once everyone is onboard the atmosphere is great. Every desk is busy and there is a great buzz in the office – everyone is trying to do their best to make sure that children receive their Christmas gifts in time and complaints are dealt with as quickly as possible,” reveals Monika. “On the busiest day of the year (which is Cyber Monday), we receive as many contacts within 24 hours as we receive in one week in low season.”
Regardless of the season, interesting stories from parents and kids always arise when working in the Contact Center.
“I am always inspired by how LEGO bricks can help autistic children develop and express themselves. We have received very moving letters from parents about how our products have helped transform their family lives,” explains Monika. “We also know that this is backed up by research, and the NHS (the British health service) is now using LEGO bricks as an alternative therapy for children with autism or learning difficulties.”
Of course, it’s not just kids who use LEGO bricks to express themselves. Last month, Monika got to meet adult fans of LEGO bricks for the first time at the Consumer Service Conference in Connecticut.
“It was also great for our teams to meet these ‘heavy users’ in person as we do sometimes get calls from them,” she concludes. “They all had different stories, which were amazing and inspiring.”
Read more portraits of our LEGO Superstars:
Joy of Building, Pride of Creation
Communicating Through Visuals
A Truly LEGO Experience
“I grew up playing with LEGO® [bricks] only to leave it behind as I came into adulthood. I came back to it in 2011 after playing one of the LEGO Star Wars video games and seeing how amazing the vehicles looked in LEGO-form. One quick journey down to my local toy store saw me return with a LEGO X-Wing. I built it, was promptly hooked and the rest is history.”
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