EDITORIAL: Excellence must be our hallmark

Excellence in the area of service delivery must become our hallmark, across the public and private sectors in Barbados.

In our 51st year of Independence, the time has come for employers in both sectors to ensure that all of their employees master key customer service skills and are at all times professional, as they undertake their daily activities. Whilst organisations may concentrate on placing a professional, “people friendly” customer service agent at the front desk, once the customers move beyond the entrance, their experience in doing business could go downhill if it is soon recognised that not all workers are on board in delivering an excellent quality of service. This is true not only for businesses who daily engage customers interested in their products or services, but we as a people in general must display a level of excellence in how we conduct business with others, whether at the community level, the school, the church, etc. and this delivery of excellence must happen on a consistent basis.

It is high time that persons realise that a pleasant smile and a courteous attitude can take you far. Individuals in any field of endeavour, who are genuine about putting forward a good face for their organisation, will know how to conduct themselves, even when a situation tests their steely resolve.

The National Initiative for Service Excellence (NISE) has been doing a good job in pushing the message that service excellence must take centre stage in service delivery. To date, however, NISE acknowledges that there is still some work to be done and we cannot agree more.

“As a nation, we are making progress in our efforts to improve the way we deliver service towards our ultimate goal of making Barbados a world leader in service. What is needed is a greater urgency and commitment on the part of all of us. What is needed is a fierce determination to overcome the stumbling blocks, to break down the barriers of resistance to change,” representatives at NISE have acknowledged.

“Studies show that a country’s value system determines its social and economic success – that when we embrace certain values, we are able to make great strides while others can hinder our progress,” NISE added.

Under the theme ‘Live Excellence’, NISE has encouraged the nation to inculcate a cluster of cherished values and associated behaviours that would create a roadmap for us to thrive, not only in the face of the current global economic crisis, but well into the 21st century. These cherished values include courtesy, honesty, creativity, responsibility and compassion. It is time we pay more earnest heed to the things which we have heard from NISE, lest at any time we should let them slip.

As pointed out by many of our leaders, excellence must be a year-round pursuit. We cannot by any means pick and choose when we will put on a polite hat or deliver a courteous smile or go the extra mile to ensure that a customer is satisfied. As we look towards November 30, Independence Day and even towards the end of the year 2017, let us determine to always put our best foot forward, whether dealing with locals or visitors and let us make a pledge in our workplaces and even our social circles, to always deliver excellent service. Let excellence be our hallmark.

Barbados Advocate

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