The View from the Shard

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World-famous visitor attraction, The View from the Shard, sought People 1st’s support to train its staff in customer service and management skills. As a result, it has experienced improved customer feedback and Tripadvisor scores and increased confidence among managers, creating a sustainable pipeline of future leaders.

The issue

Towering over London at some 1,000ft, the world-famous Shard houses a hotel, offices, two restaurants and a number of residential lodgings. It is also host to observation deck, The View from The Shard.

The View from the Shard’s 150–strong team not only needs a keen knowledge of the city and its landmarks, they also require the everyday people skills and customer-facing expertise that keep footfall consistently high. With this in mind, training manager Gemma Rowden was looking to implement a customer service training scheme.

Gemma also wanted to create a management training scheme that would stand her staff in good stead when the time came for them to make the transition from being part of the team to leading it. She was looking for a management programme that could be used at all levels – that would create consistency across the management team and a real focus on leadership, but wasn’t too ‘full-on’.

The solution: WorldHost® and Management 1st

Gemma enlisted People 1st’s help to support her in both areas. Firstly, to keep customer service standards high, we helped her to deliver an intensive one-day WorldHost Principles of Customer Service training programme for all staff, which offers support on how to empathise, build rapport and communicate with customers more effectively.

We also introduced her to our Management 1st programme, which helps first-time managers get to grips with the basics of leadership - teaching everything from coaching and communication skills right through to effective listening.

One of the benefits of Management 1st is that, if a team member has attained a Group Training Certificate (or equivalent), they can then facilitate and deliver the training themselves.

Gemma attained such a qualification and began training colleagues in-house. She followed these up with one-to-one coaching sessions with each manager, looking at their actions from the outcomes of the training and how they’ve used the learning going forward.

The impact

Since undertaking the WorldHost and Management 1st training, Gemma reports that feedback from visitors has been fantastic, with excellent Tripadvisor ratings, as well as improved internal feedback forms.

The content on customer engagement chimed particularly well with the team, which has a real focus on increasing confidence in engaging with guests so that they leave with positive memories of their experience. WorldHost, says Gemma, has helped with this “immeasurably”.

The View from the Shard’s managers have also found many of the Management 1st modules extremely useful – particularly the content on time management, organising themselves, managing their workload and the coaching and feedback models. Gemma has noticed a visible improvement in confidence among the managers, which is helping The View from the Shard safeguard sustainable progression through the ranks for its leaders of tomorrow, allowing the team reach new heights of excellence.

WorldHost® is a registered trademark of go2 Tourism HR Society. Used under license.

The View from the Shard

What the client says:

“We want to ensure our guests leave with more than they arrived with, not just having had a great experience, but wanting to come back or recommending us to someone else – WorldHost has helped us achieve that and we’re seeing fantastic results from feedback from our visitors.

“Management 1st also hit all the right notes, it wasn’t too heavy and was pitched at just the right level. Every manager within the organisation now goes through the programme and it has been a real success. We’re definitely getting more confident, I’ve seen it in emerging teams, and our younger or newer managers. And the training environment itself was great, having a group with the senior directors and my CEO, sitting with someone who’s just started – that was a fascinating dynamic.

“I’m extremely happy with how both schemes have been received.”

- Gemma Rowden, Training Manager, The View from The Shard

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