We sent a series of mystery shoppers into Baa Bar’s bars, to get an idea of the current level of customer excellence. We then used those findings and reported back to Baa Bar, using a strength-based approach – focusing on their good points, rather than weaknesses – to train the customer care team to improve their communication with customers.

What?

Organisational development work with national chain Baa Bar, which began with our mystery shopper/ customer excellence work with them.

Background

Baa Bar was founded more than 20 years ago in Liverpool, and has grown into a national chain, with seven late night bars around the country, and an eighth on the way. As Baa Bar grows, we’re helping them train, improve and audit their customer care team.

The aims

Baa Bar’s Bonnie Pal says: ‘We felt mystery shoppers would be the best way for AFTA Thought to understand what our customers experience and how they perceive the brand. We hoped they would identify the gaps in customer care training, and how the training could be conveyed. We thought their training methods were intriguing and innovative, and wanted to see how they could incorporate that into the training programme and work environment.’

What we did

We sent a series of mystery shoppers into Baa Bar’s bars, to get an idea of the current level of customer excellence. We then used those findings and reported back to Baa Bar, celebrating the success of their branding  strategies and highlighting areas where staff could get this across more effectively. Chris Callander, AFTA Thought’s senior training practitioner, (and project mystery shopper) says: ‘Research processes are always an essential part of building work with any new client and working with Baa Bar was no different. Apart from the beer and the occasional Electric Banana and Monkey Brain, that is. Seeing and feeling how the organisation’s  vision is realised at different venues helped us to engage with the brand’s DNA and inject our own enthusiasm for development back into their business. Events that our mystery shoppers experienced became cornerstones for our contribution to helping a locally-founded brand expand its national reach. And an inspiration for our actors to gather, in the spirit of conviviality…’

The outcomes

Baa Bar’s feedback shows the impact live drama can have, capturing realistic, evocative events for their staff. Bonnie says: ‘AFTA Thought presented their findings from the mystery customer visits in a rather unique way and the message was very clearly and emphatically delivered. It was very inspiring. AFTA Thought utilised unique and innovative methods to effectively demonstrate what our customer service needs were. The manner in which they delivered the message was extremely professional and emphatic, and raised critical questions for senior management on how these gaps could be fulfilled. We will review the foundations of our front-level staff and management training and induction framework, with a view to incorporating this element.’

‘AFTA Thought utilised unique and innovative methods to effectively demonstrate what our customer service needs were. It was very inspiring. Customer excellence with Baa Bar Ltd. Helping realise a company’s vision and development plans through customer service training.’

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