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Catalyst

Organizations providing services need to be efficient, effective, excellent, and equitable, with the customer at the heart of everything they do. A customer focus principle plays just as important a role for small frontline units as it would for large corporate organizations. The objective of this course is to provide the delegate with the basic components of what contributes to customer service excellence. When you understand your role of being a catalyst, you will become a Strong Relationship builder and an authority in your subject. You will understand where people are coming from and be very good at setting and exceeding expectations. You will become a strong networker and be sensitive and tuned in to the feeling of the customer and be able to articulate the real issues to your own organization.

Introduction

Organizations providing services need to be efficient, effective, excellent, and equitable, with the customer at the heart of everything they do. A customer focus principle plays just as important a role for small frontline units as it would for large corporate organizations.

The objective of this course is to provide the delegate with the basic components of what contributes to customer service excellence.  When you understand your role of being a catalyst, you will become a Strong Relationship builder and an authority in your subject.  You will understand where people are coming from and be very good at setting and exceeding expectations. You will become a strong networker and be sensitive and tuned in to the feeling of the customer and be able to articulate the real issues to your own organization.

Outcomes

  • You will be made aware of the importance of a close relationship with your customer to synchronize their expectations with your organization’s capability
  • A common complaint arising from poor service delivery is “not getting regular feedback during a problem”; three actions help overcome this weakness: tailored communication, information gathering and policies and practices – these topics will be thoroughly discussed
  • You will be equipped to identify issues before they occur and suggest meaningful alternatives that will speed up the process to resolve issues promptly
  • You will become familiar with the five criterion for Customer Service Excellence as set out in the UK-based service Standard document (reference book included)
  • You will be given insight into a People Engagement methodology comprising 7 Principles, 5 Themes and 5 steps for achieving them with distinction
  • You will be made aware of portfolio, programme and project management as methods for achieving excellence in service delivery

Who should attend?

All role players providing some form of service to customers who wish to play this role really well

Consultants, senior sales executives or people providing business advice to others

The standard package inclusions

Delegates will receive the three reference books on which this course is based, a course workbook (with copies of all slides used and notes for the essential topics to be discussed), various articles, the PSP Catalyst syllabus, sample exams and the examination rationale (explanation of answers to questions).  The cost for the examination is included.  Refreshments and a light luncheon are also included.

Duration and Delivery

The course takes place over three weeks using one day a week in which the group get together.  The 40 minute exam takes place on the morning after the third group meeting.

Evening work and exam preparation

Delegates should plan to spend time during each week (between group sessions) reading and highlighting the reference books – to gain the most from the course.

Your greatest value that you will receive, will be determined by your willingness to implant new habits into your working and private lives and persevere with them for the rest of your life.

Pre-course work

Where possible you will receive one reference book and a questionnaire before the course starts.  You will be asked to fill in the questionnaire and bring it with you on the first day of the course.  You will also be asked to read the first few chapters of the reference book.

Prerequisites

Some basic understanding of business principles

Examination

PSP Catalyst Foundation is a forty minute examination performed after the third group meeting.  It is made up of 50 multiple choice questions.  The exam is closed book.  The pass mark is 50%.

Renowned reference books used

Catalyst Course reference books

 

The Catalyst foundation course provides the basic knowledge of the methods for delivering customer service excellence, including all touch points in the customer experience.
 
The catalyst impact includes the way to get the organization to rally round to provide strong customer service, and the key elements of improving the customer relationship
When I am a great catalyst, I will become a Strong Relationship builder and an authority in my subject. I understand where people are coming from and I’m very good at setting and exceeding expectations. I’m a strong networker and I am sensitive and tuned in to the feeling of the customer and am able to articulate the real issues to my own organization.
 
Customer Service Excellence Standard
 
Organizations providing services need to be efficient, effective, excellent, and equitable, with the customer at the heart of everything they do. A customer focus principle plays just as important a role for small frontline units as it would for large corporate organizations.
Customer Service Excellence was developed to offer all organizations a practical tool for driving customer focused change.
The foundation of this tool is the Customer Service Excellence standard, which is a mix of research, management and operational models and, most importantly, practical experience of providing services.
The standard has particular focus on delivery, timeliness, information, professionalism and staff attitude.
 
Five criteria for achieving excellence:
  1. Customer Insight
    1. Customer identification
    2. Engagement and consultation
    3. Customer satisfaction
  2. The Culture of the Organization
    1. Leadership, policy and culture
    2. Staff professionalism and attitude
  3. Information and Access
    1. Range of information
    2. Quality of information
    3. Access
    4. Co-operative working with other providers, partners and communities
  4. Delivery
    1. Delivery standards
    2. Achieved delivery and outcomes
    3. Deal effectively with problems
  5. Timeliness and Quality of Service
    1. Standards for timeliness and quality
    2. Timely outcomes
    3. Achieved timely delivery
 
Customer Service Excellence can be achieved by complying with seven principles, applying five themes throughout and following five steps along the pathway of delivery.
 
7 Principles
 
Provide a clear compass for anyone anywhere in a change.  Follow them to improve chances of success.
These can be used as a running practice checklist.
  • Seek first to understand & then be understood.
  • Effective change is always led.
  • Habits are the inhibitors and the goal.
  • Recognise and minimise the pain of change.
  • High performance comes through people and action.
  • Integrity is powerfully persuasive.
  • Feelings trump reason and meaning trumps authority.
 
5 Themes
 
Each theme evident throughout effective engagement and each relate to all steps in the pathway
  • Six engagement hats
  • The power of Why
  • Collaboration
  • Story-telling
  • Agile
 
5 Steps in the engagement pathway
 
Using these steps with their associated practices and techniques will enhance capability and become more effective in influencing people and gaining their cooperation in achieving good outcomes.
 
The “Pathway to more effective stakeholder engagement” comprises five steps:
 
  1. The Who step – identifying, grouping and profiling stakeholders
  2. The How step – create a stakeholder engagement strategy, analyse adopters, establish value propositions, assemble a bank of pitches, track emotional states, lead with the Bridges model, establish readiness to change, force field analysis, target level of engagement, the Dream model, adjust your engagement style, sequencing to Kotter’ 8-step model, relational bank accounts, the change formula, defining engagement roles, compiling an engagement model
  3. The When step – writing the communication plan
  4. The Engage step
  5. The Adapt step
Resources required for the course content
 
The content of the PS Professional Catalyst Foundation course is derived from the following publications, which should be made available to the delegates
Catalyst course reading material
 
Plus
 
Methods of presentation
 
For best and lasting impact, this course should be delivered in the classroom format because there are exercises and group dynamics that bring added value to the reference material.  The Workbook contains valuable insight into how best to interpret elements of the reference books.  Delegates also have the opportunity to ask questions and receive answers immediately.  Two standard methods of delivery are offered:
 
1. For delegates with limited “prime time” availability
For this delivery method, the course syllabus will be split up into say 4-hour weekly time slots
 
2. For delegates who can afford to be away from office for a full day
A course launch will require a 3-hour workshop to set the ground rules and make self-reading suggestions.
The following programme will then be followed:
 
catalyst foundation course
3. Delivery arrangements can be made for specific customer circumstances
 
 
Important observation
 
The reference materials used during the Catalyst Foundation course are well known and could possibly have been read casually by delegates considering attending this course.  Those considering the course could think that they should pass this course by because they have “heard” about the material.  This will be most unwise.
 
The reference materials have become classics because of their positive change they bring to many people’s lives.  To achieve this positive change, the materials need to be understood, digested and the positive changes in behaviour allowed to become OUTCOMES as the changes are put into practice.  The purpose of the one hour exam at the end of the course is to confirm that the delegates DO understand the key benefits that can be derived.  Ideally, there should be follow-up workshops where the content of this course is refreshed and higher levels of application planned and achieved.  The Catalyst Practitioner course is the follow on course for this foundation course and should serve as a step-up course for the professional striving for an even higher level of excellence.
 
A third Catalyst Professional course will bring the delegate into an even higher level of professionalism.
 

 

  1. The Catalyst foundation course provides the basic knowledge of the methods for delivering customer service excellence, including all touch points in the customer experience.  Customer service will be enhanced once the delegates apply what is taught.
  2. The foundation of this tool is the Customer Service Excellence standard, which is a mix of research, management and operational models and, most importantly, practical experience of providing services.  First world standards can be implemented.
  3. The standard has particular focus on delivery, timeliness, information, professionalism and staff attitude.  Customers will experience improved relationships which could result in further business opportunities.
  4. Using the five steps in engagement with customers with their associated practices and techniques will enhance capability and become more effective in influencing people and gaining their cooperation in achieving good outcomes.

Catalyst Cost Summary