On the theme of customer service Ember Real Results also worked with the staff in the Library & Information Service at UCLan. The brief was to train staff to ‘Deliver An Outstanding Customer Experience’. This project was working with supervisors and front line staff to support them in the soft skills and behaviours needed to work with both internal customers (academic staff and colleagues) and external customers, (students, open day visitors etc).
Why Ember Real Results
Ember Real Results Training submitted a successful tender to be a preferred supplier to UCLan in 2007, an exercise which was repeated in 2012. As a long standing supplier, Ember Real Results has worked closely with UCLan on several projects including: Soft Skills Modules such as Time Management, Presentation Skills, Assertiveness Skills and many more. Keynote speeches at Staff conferences Bespoke Team Building design and facilitation Long term leadership programmes for academic and non-academic staff High-flyer talent development programme Individual 360 feedback and coaching.
“I felt there were things that were brought to my attention that I hadn’t thought about – the training was really good.”
Universities are under pressure. The majority of them have been affected by Government cuts to higher education, a drop in student numbers, an increased importance of foreign students and the increase in tuition fees. To be attractive, the University has not just have compelling courses, it needs to maintain its enviable reputation… and a core part of that is ensuring supervisors and front line staff are confident communicators. The team needs to be capable of resolving any number of challenges with both internal customers such as academic staff, and external customers such as students and their families.
The training focused on body language, words, voice tone and dealing with difficult behaviours (noise in the library, disputes over fines, lost resources and other everyday occurrences in any University library and IT service). Dealing positively and confidently with customers was part of this training project with assertive behaviour and golden rules of customer service being useful areas for the delegates to work on.
Like many Higher Education Institutions, the University of Central Lancashire has undergone significant changes since the introduction of student fees in 2012. The majority of academic institutions in the UK have been affected by Government cuts to higher education and a drop in student numbers, fuelled by a fall in the number of 18-year-olds nationally and the increase in tuition fees. The organisation has been required to re-evaluate its portfolio of course programmes, and become increasingly competitive and customer focused in attracting students.
Ember Real Results was consulted and involved in a number of training design and delivery projects in relation to customer service culture change. As part of the Principal Lecturer Leadership programmes designed and delivered by Ember Real Results; a 2 day module on Leading Change was delivered. This incorporated analysis of changing expectations of students (and their parents or other fee-payers) and how best to handle these from open day to graduation. As well as provoking discussion and debate with the academic participants, a clear action plan was made by each person to apply new approaches.
Although we have done a large number of projects with the University, this particular one was working with the University to examine how they talk to people, and to see how it could be more customer-centric. Specifically, the University Marketing Department had identified a real need for staff to work with a ‘sales through service’ approach – helping them communicate better and smarter, in particular to reflect the changing expectations of students.
One of the streams of work with the University is our Principal Lecturer Leadership programme. This was an excellent opportunity to integrate a two day module into that programme, which we called Leading Change.
- The overarching strategy was a strategy around the principle of ‘students as customers’, a mind set which would drive the training structure
- The workshop we designed used both customer service thinking and sales techniques, which were specifically designed around scenarios that staff faced on a regular basis in their jobs… as well as the more unusual and challenging situations
Ember Real Results was the provider of choice for UCLan’s marketing department when they identified a training need. They wanted to train their staff to work with a ‘sales through service’ approach in the conversations they had with schools, colleges, prospective students and their parents. Ember Real Results designed an interactive 2 day workshop which built on the principle of viewing students as customers. This mind set was a key focus of the training. The workshop used both customer service thinking and sales techniques applied to scenario activities based on real life examples. The result was an action plan for every delegate to build customer loyalty to the UCLan brand and attract future students.
About Ember Real Results
At Ember Real Results we are in the business of delivering lasting performance improvement through bespoke training and coaching. We design and deliver creative, award-winning solutions that generate measurable improvements. As part of the Ember Group we are immersed in contact centre expertise, and help our clients acquire the skills they need to grow – from agent performance to leadership and management solutions. We have over a decade of experience and ideas for you to tap into that guarantee Ember Real Results with your investment.