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Managing Meetings

by Susan Hay
March/April 2010
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Article Link: http://www.childcareexchange.com/article/managing-meetings/5019294/

Meetings under threat

More and more organisations are looking to maximise the time that can be spent ‘in front of the customer.’ Although this used to be the preserve of those with a sales role " including managers of early years child care centres " everyone’s part in customer service is now frequently quoted as the most competitive aspect of what the organisation does " how it offers its service. This extends both to customers in the traditional, external sense, as well as those in the back room that serve ­colleagues on the front line. A saying that rings in my memory from the Head of HR at Chic-Fil-A® many years ago: “If you ain’t servin’ chicken, you’re servin’ someone who is.”

On the face of it, for early years centres, this makes perfect sense: It improves parent and client relations and undoubtedly leads to increased enrolment. However, whilst this may make economic sense, unless carefully managed, it can lead to these individuals becoming customer-facing to an extent that leaves them disconnected from the knowledge held within the organisation, instead becoming islands of information.

E-mail, Blackberries®, and other ­mobile devices can connect people for brief, transactional exchanges, but the central information pool, ...

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