This past Monday I opened e-mails from many members saying hooray for the electronic newsletter. It's quick, simple and convenient for members to access, read and continue on with their day. If you have not provided the office with your e-mail please do so as we are no longer sending hard copies.
You may send us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (419) 668-4155. The move to electronic allows us to save significant dollars about $7,000 over the course of a year and these dollars can be used to enhance other programs, upgrade our services, etc. Along with the financial aspect, going electronic allows us to stay in step with the huge number of business people that do nearly all of their business communications via the Internet. Thanks to all who took the time to provide feedback on the newsletter. We appreciate your input.
You may recall a few weeks ago I was a bit riled up about some customer service faux pas and I've tried to think of a way to bring home the message about the importance of customer service. Usually with topics like this one ends up preaching to the choir and so it seems a bit hopeless. However, a member forwarded the following Web link and it is the best lesson on true customer service I have ever seen. Please, take a couple of minutes to log on,www.stservicemovie.com/.
The whole thing takes less than five minutes but it will leave you feeling different about customer service. None of us has this level of devotion to customer service, but we could, and we should. Creating a culture of customer care does not happen overnight start now, work at it every day. With national retailers already promoting Christmas and cutting prices there appears to be some trepidation about the holiday shopping season.
Local, independent businesses: You are not going to outspend them on advertising. You should not attempt to undercut them, but you can make this a special, and successful, season for your business and your customers. Out-service out-shine everyone. Put coffee and cookies out. Make your shop bright, easy to maneuver, be open the hours the customer needs you to be open. Smiles are free, give one to everyone. Be unique. Be the best.
Coming up the end of the month the chamber is sponsoring a Bureau of Workers' Compensation Presentation. Area CEOs and HR directors (members and non-members) are invited to join us from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Oct. 30 in the Art Gallery at Norwalk High School. Janet Wilks will present information on manual classifications, recent changes to medical only claims, and other programs you could be utilizing to control your WC costs. Businesses planning to attend may also forward our office questions about BWC programs in advance, and then Janet will be glad to explain at the presentation.
Following lunch, the new administrator, Marsha Ryan, will lay out her plans for bringing the BWC forward and she'll also answer your questions. Lunch will be provided by the chamber. RSVP by Oct. 24 (required) and space is limited. Call (419) 668-4155.
Melissa James is executive director of the Norwalk-Area Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached at the chamber office, 10 W. Main St., Norwalk, or by calling (419) 668-4155.