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York Town Manager Steve Burns plans to include funds in next year’s budget to pay for an outside trainer who would teach customer service skills to all town employees. The York Weekly newspaper reported that Burns' initiative is prompted by him overhearing town employees being curt or unhelpful to residents seeking assistance. Citing the recent power outages as an example, he said, “If someone calls me to chew me out because their electricity is still out, I could say, ‘Look, that’s CMP’s problem. I can’t help you.’ Or, I could show some empathy and say, ‘You must be cold. I’m sorry about that. We’re working with CMP to resolve the problem.’”
Which best describes your company's approach to teaching customer service skills?
Comments

11/09/17 AT 07:40 AM
My old company (I've just retired) uses a combination of the last three choices with a good dose of humor thrown in. The customers usually appreciate our efforts, informal though they may be.

11/09/17 AT 07:40 AM
We have a few guidelines and examples outlined in our Employee Handbook and we reiterate those quarterly, but mostly it's case-by-case.

11/08/17 AT 01:41 PM
It is a basic skill required at our library. When we hire, we look for those who are experienced in customer assistance. An example here is that when each person walks through our doors, they are warmly greeted. Three cheers to Steve Burns!

11/08/17 AT 12:35 PM
Lots of municipal employees could benefit from customer service training. For some it comes naturally but others seem to think that rationing friendliness and service is part of the job.

11/08/17 AT 12:17 PM
None of the above. We recently had a trainer come in to refresh those skills across the board to all employees. A kind word to a customer can calm their day but a harsh word boomerangs back to you in an echo chamber.
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