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Customer Service Games for Training reviewed


Title: Customer Service Games for Training
Author: Graham Roberts Phelps
Publisher: Gower
ISBN: 0-566-08205-5
Price: £49.50
Format: 184 pages

This is a collection of 38 games and exercises designed to help with training for customer service. The author has also written a number of other collections of exercises for trainers including Flip Chart Games for Trainers and Health and Safety Games for Trainers. The text is well laid out with icons on all the photocopiable handout sheets.

There is a short introduction describing how to use the text. However, there is no discussion of good customer service principles. The book might have benefited from a short chapter on this, and a reading list. Most of the exercises in the collection are short and require very little preparation making them very easy to use. 'Customer Confessions' requires the participants to list their favourite and worst type of customer, best and worst ever customer experiences and most amusing customer story. This is listed as an icebreaker and is an easy start to a group event. There is a set of self-assessment questionnaires on issues like telephone style, level of customer service skills and attitude. There is also an excellent set of 10 role plays at the back of the book, with three pages of instructions on how to use them, and detailed notes for both participants and the observer on how to prepare for each role.

You would not require a lot of thought to come up with some of the suggested exercises yourself, for example:

'Exercise Number 9, Customer Service Examples: Divide into small groups, discuss and list examples of good and bad customer service that you have experienced.'

Some of the discussion points for Exercise Number 9 are also rather obvious e.g. 'What are the similarities between examples?'. Some of the other exercises in Customer Service Games would fit equally well in any other book of training games, e.g. Games 30 and 31, two simple number puzzles designed for ice breaker activities.

As I read the text I thought half a dozen times 'That’s not a bad idea, I could use that'. That’s why I found this book useful. It is unlikely to deliver a set of exercises that will fulfil all your customer service training needs, but it should give you pause for thought, and provide some exercises you can use.

Customer Service Games for Training was reviewed by Chris Green.


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