I work in Credit and Collections for Lakeland Energy / Lakeland Networks. Working in collections isn’t a very popular career choice, however I’ve worked in this field for over 15 years, and I find that often the stigma associated with this line of work is incorrect.
Most people don’t get behind on their bills due to overspending or living beyond their means. Quite often illness, an emergency, or sudden unemployment will lead people into debt and the combination of those things results in an emotional and stressful situation.
The most important part of my job is helping to find solutions. Listening, empathizing, and staying calm are key. If someone answers the phone and is honest with me, we can almost always find a solution.
If you get a call from someone trying to collect a debt, remember they’re just doing their job. Be honest about your situation. If you don’t feel you’re finding a solution, ask to be transferred to someone else. The worst thing a consumer can do is ignore a call or email from a collector. Respond in some way, by email, or by phone when the office is closed to avoid conflict.
Emotional stories from people who can’t make a promised payment are difficult to hear—I’m human too and these past two years were especially tough. The Pandemic had a negative effect on many businesses and families, and we can help—we want to help!
Lakeland has made a special effort to keep people connected during these challenging times, with payment plans, throttled back service options and other solutions. High speed, reliable internet service is needed now more than ever before. Our goal is to keep everyone connected for work, for school and of course, for entertainment. We are always just a phone call away.