Unformatted text preview: wholly determine, the
behaviour of those language-users to whom it is prescribed.4
My data were collected for a larger project (Cameron 2000) which looked at
some range of service workplaces, but for the purposes of this article I
concentrate on a single type of workplace, namely the `call centre', an institution in which people are employed to make or take telephone calls. (The `make
or take' distinction is captured in the industry terms `outbound' and `inbound'
to refer to call centres where employees either initiate or receive calls. The
centres I looked at were exclusively `inbound', i.e. calls were initiated by
customers. Outbound call centres typically have sales rather than service as
their prime function, whereas I was most interested in the provision of customer
I chose to study call centres, in particular, for two reasons. First, they provide
a prototypical example of a `new' service workplace: the vast majority have
existed for less than ten years, and their insti...
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- Spring '08
- The Land, Call centre, Blackwell Publishers Ltd.