NORTH LAKE TAHOE, CA – Techniques for providing excellent customer service and an introduction to the principles of “Welcoming Places” will be the focus of two training sessions offered this fall by the Sierra College Customer Service Academy.
The two courses - Exceptional Customer Service and Communicating in the Workplace - will each be delivered in two, four-hour sessions in consecutive weeks. Participants will learn through instruction, class discussion and participation, individual and group problem solving, case analysis and video presentations. The training will be held at the Sierra College Truckee campus, in the Pioneer Center, at 10725 Pioneer Trail in Truckee.
“We’re extremely pleased to bring our Customer Service Academy programs to the Truckee-North Lake Tahoe area for the first time,” said Sandra Scott, Sierra College Director of Workforce Development and Continuing Education. “We’re doing so with the encouragement and support of the three local organizations which are sponsors of the North Lake Tahoe – Truckee Welcoming Places Initiative,” she added.
These organizations are the North Lake Tahoe Chamber of Commerce, Truckee Donner Chamber of Commerce and the Community Collaborative of Tahoe Truckee.
Long time local resident and resort industry leader Marshall Lewis will be one of the trainers. Lewis brings extensive local experience to the Customer Service Academy from previous positions as general manager and marketing director for businesses and organizations, such as Alpine Meadows, Boreal Ridge Ski Area and Tahoe Yacht Club. Lewis has a bachelor of art degrees in psychology and marketing, as well as a master of arts in business. “Simply put,” said Lewis. ”Excellent customer service is a key to sustaining and growing any business endeavor.”
Exceptional Customer Service will be held Wednesday, October 10 and 17 from 8 a.m. to 12 noon. With the goal of learning to more effectively meet the needs of customers, participants will learn skills proven to increase satisfaction improve sales and retain customers. They will also practice handling complaints in ways to turn those with concerns into loyal clients. In addition, participants will look at how their attitude about their co-workers and customers affect service delivery and benefit from tips on how to develop and project a positive attitude.
Communicating in the Workplace will be offered Wednesday, November 7 and 14, also from 8 a.m. to 12 noon. Participants will learn the key elements of effective business communication. The course will cover methods of verbal and non-verbal communication, and how to enhance communication with both internal and external customers. By understanding barriers to communication, developing listening skills and learning telephone communication techniques, participants will improve their communication style, increase understanding and improve customer service.
Both sessions will include an introduction to the principles of “Welcoming Places,” as described in the North Lake Tahoe-Truckee Welcoming Places Initiative. According to officials at the local sponsoring organizations, the four basic strategies of Welcoming Places involve the physical appearance of your storefront and interior, community engagement, customer interactions and employee support.
“There is substantial evidence demonstrating that employees will be more welcoming to customers if they themselves feel welcome and valued as employees,” said Kym Fabel, manager of the North Lake Tahoe Chamber of Commerce.
The cost for each eight-hour block session will be $75.00 per person. A limited number of scholarships, offering up to a 50 percent match, will be available through the Community Fund of North Lake Tahoe. For more information and to register for one or both of the two courses, contact Kym Fabel at kym@PureTahoeNorth.com or 530-581-8764. Fabel also has information regarding the scholarship opportunities.