One training project that has been exciting for us, both in terms of the design and the delivery, has been our ‘Formula 1 Customer Service Training’ which we specifically developed for a financial services provider. The aim was to create an unusual, interactive, ‘funky’ new training regarding customer service. We think we succeeded! Find out more about this project here:
The brief for this training was clear: It was to be offered to 280 employees of a financial services provider that is linked to a motor manufacturer, and aimed at creating ‘proud ambassadors of their brand who will use professionalism and effective communication to create positive energy internally and externally, and therefore create exceptional customer satisfaction’.
The additional challenge: to make the training as interactive, funky, fun and experiential as possible.
We enjoyed the challenge! In an initial meeting with the project team on the client’s side, we clarified exact needs, and discussed possible ‘themes’ to make this training special and interactive. This is when the idea of a ‘Formula 1 Customer Service Training’ was born… and we then created three modules: The Qualifying, the Race, and the Championships.
Module 1: the Qualifying
In Module 1, participants focused on gaining self-awareness and increasing emotional intelligence. By realising that it was up to them to create an exceptional customer experience, people were encouraged to take greater responsibility for their work. Some topics during this training were “The Qualifying rounds”: ‘What kind of driver am I’ (Understanding own dynamics in order to optimise service), ‘Accountability!’, ‘Attitude: getting my ‘game face’ on’. Others were around ‘Pre-Race Team Preparation: Setting up the pit’. This part included discussions on value chain and creating the WOW factor, ‘Team Radio’ (looking at communication skills for excellent customer service) and ‘Driver focussing’ (getting into the right mind set for customer service).
Module 2: the Race
In this module, participants focussed on creating exceptional customer service. By understanding customers further, and learning to be professional and impressive when dealing with clients, learners gained higher motivation for their work. Topics during this module were: ‘The starting grid interview’, ‘Keeping the fans happy’, ‘the team strategy’ and ‘race challenges’. Discussions focused on understanding customer needs, meeting and exceeding expectations, and brainstorming ideas for the improvement of customer service in participants’ teams. The module ended by participants receiving their ‘Formula 1 Customer Service Drivers Licence’, which they were most proud to receive after having worked hard on themselves and their ability to give great service.
Module 3: The Championship
This module was offered to participants who had to deal with particularly difficult situations and complaints. They looked at ‘Keeping off the ARMCO’ and ‘Driving in the rain’- delivering bad news, dealing with personal attacks, and dealing with other customer challenges. It ended by acknowledging successes and strengthening them for what was to come.
Our experience during design and implementation
Designing this training was fun for us. Not only were we challenged to link customer service content to the Formula 1 theme, but our creativity was sparked when looking for video clips, exercises, and other interactive and fun aspects to integrate into the training. Whether it was filming senior managers speaking about their experiences with customer service and giving inspirational messages to participants, or searching for examples of Formula 1 races that could be linked to Customer Service – our work paid off and participants thoroughly enjoyed the training. They were happy to compare themselves to Formula 1 drivers, always striving to win the race, to be the best they can be, and work well with their team. And we are confident that we’ve created many winning drivers of customer service for this very valued client of ours!
Once participants have gone through the training, they submit ideas to improve customer service for a competition – the best ideas will be implemented, and the best success stories published… something to be inspired by, and keep the ‘renewed flame’ of the race for the best service going.