Performance management with Derby Homes

The Challenge

Derby Homes’ mission statement is simple: “to secure the best future for council housing tenants and services in Derby.” The organisation was formed in 2002 to take over responsibility for managing council homes in Derby from the council. Customer service is a central pillar in achieving the mission and Derby Homes decided that drama based training in customer service skills was the best way of achieving excellence.

The Approach

We worked with Derby Homes’ customer service manager to create a narrative based on events that could realistically happen if customer service standards were not in the forefront of the minds of staff. The story was set in a fictitious housing association and followed the disastrous history of one tenant through a series of badly handled interactions by different areas of the organisation. The participants in the training had the opportunity to change the outcome of each interaction and it soon became clear that better customer service could have nipped the problem in the bud.

The Results

All staff throughout the housing organisation experienced the session over a period of eight months helping Derby Homes to improve its already high standard of customer service.

“Dramatic Solutions worked with us to create a bespoke and innovative training course that helped us to focus on those areas that we knew managers found difficult. Using a drama based approach the training brought employee performance issues to real life, and gave participants the opportunity to try out and discuss different approaches.

The feedback can be summed up by one course participant who said ‘this was the best day course I have ever been on!'”

Christine HillPersonnel Manager

“We have worked with Dramatic Solutions since 2007. The aim was to really challenge aspects of organisational culture that affect customer service – good and bad. Many training organisations say that they work with you to deliver bespoke programmes but I can tell you that Dramatic Solutions really do that.

Between us, and with a lot of discussion and fine tuning, we developed a complex customer service scenario that all staff, from enquiry clerks and repairs tradesmen through to the Chief Executive could identify with. It was very much an interactive development process; Dramatic Solutions were very flexible and keen to listen and understand what we needed. They then had lots of ideas on how to make it really work for us.

Dramatic Solutions developed the training programme around that scenario, acting out parts of the process, and asking staff to explain and discuss where the situation went wrong and what should have happened. The use of drama to bring real examples of interactions between staff and customers to life is exciting and interesting for staff. I would strongly recommend you consider using Dramatic Solutions for your training needs. If anyone wants to talk to us about our experience with them, give us a call.”

Murray ChapmanCustomer Services Manager

“The service we receive from Dramatic Solutions is very professional and helpful.The team have helped us plan for our training needs and have designed bespoke courses for us that are both relevant and practical. They also offer a wide range of off the shelf courses that are very useful.

The courses delivered by Dramatic Solutions are always extremely well researched and well received by our staff. The use of actors is very effective in delivering the training message in a memorable way.”

Christine HillPersonnel Manager, Derby Homes

“We wanted to offer our managers support and confidence in dealing with employee performance issues. Dramatic solutions worked with us to create a bespoke and innovative training course that helped us to focus on those areas that we knew managers found difficult. Using a drama based approach the training brought employee performance issues to real life, and gave participants the opportunity to try out and discuss different approaches. The feedback can be summed up by one course participant who said “this was the best day course I have ever been on.”

Christine HillPersonnel Manager, Derby Homes

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