Keisha Hill, Gleaner Writer
The National Development Foundation of Jamaica (NDFJ), in partnership with the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), through its Caribbean Technological Consultancy Network, on Monday, conducted a four-day workshop at The Knutsford Court Hotel, based on the theme, 'Enhancing Customer Service Delivery'.
The workshop that ran from Monday, November 5, to Thursday, November 8, came at a critical juncture as Jamaica is heavily criticised for its poor customer service, and is targeted at micro, small and medium-sized businesses.
The four-day workshop was led by facilitator Carolyn Rose-Miller, independent contractor through the CDB, and included dissecting various elements surrounding customer service and actively engaging and training the 25 participants who were selected.
Those participating included: Director of the NDFJ, Deanna McFarlane and Chief Executive Officer, Charmaine Gravesandy; in addition to president of the MSME Alliance, Dr Rosalea Hamilton and general manager of the Development Bank of Jamaica Limited (DBJ), Edison Galbraith.
Giving the opening remarks, director of the NDFJ, Deanna McFarlane, shared with participants the very important role customer service, while encouraging participants to learn as much so as to apply it to their businesses. "Customer service is the most important aspect of any business. Without it, even things such as marketing will go to waste," McFarlane said.
President of the MSME Alliance, Dr Rosalea Hamilton stated that the workshop should be taken seriously as, "customer service is very valuable and especially important for small businesses".
Business participants in attendance ranged from sectors such as technology, marketing, interior decorating and others, with all expressing high praises for the programme. "Regardless of how educated you are, you can always learn something from someone," said Theo Chambers, chairman of PanaCarib Business Solutions.
'customer service is paramount to success'
Managing director of Spaces Limited, Janelle Pantry said that her reason for attending the workshop was because of the fact that, "customer service is paramount to the success of any organisation in particular retail businesses".
Business participants were also guided to implement and institutionalise their own customer-service strategy dubbed, 'Implanting Technique.'
The NDFJ and the CDB will later follow up to see their progress and offer the relevant input.
The National Development Foundation of Jamaica was established in 1981 as a non-profit organisation, to develop and promote entrepreneurship in Jamaica.
The organisation supports micro, small and medium business enterprises by means of credit, financing, training and a wide range of market-driven support services.
The Caribbean Development Bank collaborates with the NDFJ on a wide scope of workshops each year so as to reach more MSME's in Jamaica.