The event encompassed every member of Sheffield Theatres’ staff, across The Crucible and Lyceum.
Sheffield Theatres is renowned for its high quality performances on stage but they also want to be known for their high quality service off it. As part of the £15.3million refurbishment of The Crucible, Sheffield Theatres strived to produce a staff development programme that put customer care at its heart. They wanted to show their staff members that they are just as important as the people on stage and they carry Sheffield Theatres’ banner in the eyes of the public.
This was an ambitious project; we took the interesting approach of using actors and theatrical techniques to train every member of Sheffield Theatres’ staff in an event that spanned two days.
Embracing Sheffield Theatres’ ethos to be bold, enriching and passionate, Dead Earnest crafted performances that were specifically targeted at box-office, bar, front of house and financial workers in the organisation. We started by showing the audience some scenarios they would be familiar with. These particular scenes centred on issues such as keeping high levels of customer service until the end of the day, making sure all members of staff (from box-office to bar and beyond) have a good standard of knowledge about the current performance to taking ownership of problems rather than ‘passing the buck’.
These plays formed the basis of the discussions that followed on what went wrong and how it could be improved. The conversations allowed the staff members to feel integrated into the company, mirroring Sheffield Theatres’ desire for every one of their staff members to understand their importance within the organisation. The feedback and solutions gained – from small ideas such as saying ‘Hello’ to every staff member you meet to larger changes in induction training and improved communication between all levels of staff to give the customer the best information possible – proved valuable in Sheffield Theatres’ revamp.
Dead Earnest’s ability to allow the attendees to take ownerships of the solutions meant that the staff could embrace the changing attitude of the organisation, improving both the customer’s experiences and their own.
So, like, has it worked?
Well, the best way to judge it is to go into Sheffield Theatres and judge their customer service yourself but here is some feedback from those at the top.
“Teams have benefitted hugely from seeing what good customer service looks like, we can see that they are working hard on a daily basis to respond to customers as individuals. “ Roxy Daniels, commercial director.
“Dead Earnest understood our brief straight away, they were on the same wave length and they listened to the spirit and the detail of what we told them.” Elizabeth Underwood, consultant learning director.