Finance Directorate Organises Training for Staff and Service Personnel

The Finance Directorate, as part of efforts to improve and deliver satisfactory customer services, has held a two-day training for staff and service personnel in the Directorate.

The Director of Finance, Mrs. Bernice Beauty Agudu, in her opening remarks, expressed her appreciation to participants present and said the training was timely and essential to equip staff and personnel with the requisite and proper etiquette in attending to customers. 

Speaking on Customer Service, the Facilitator, Prof. Mahmoud Abdulai Mahmoud, an Associate Professor at the Department of Marketing & Entrepreneurship (University of Ghana Business School), noted that “Customers are not an interruption to jobs since they are the reason why staff and personnel have jobs in the first place”. He emphasised that personnel need to be equipped with skills to assist with the needs of customers.

Prof. Mahmoud opined that it was necessary to create and maintain a welcoming environment for customers. Highlighting the barriers of effective communication, Prof. Mahmoud cited some examples such as language, time, the lack of interest, noise and distractions. 

According to Prof. Mahmoud, telephone skills, body language, tone of voice, and written communication were essential to create a positive first impression to customers. “Creating first impressions to customers draws in more profit and revenue to the organisation. First impressions count and subsequently affect interactions between staff and customers. You only have one chance to make a first impression.” Prof. Mahmoud remarked. He stressed reliability, confidence, efficiency, consistency and organisation as factors affecting the quality of service in an organisation or institution. 

Prof. Mahmoud Abdulai Mahmoud, an Associate Professor at the Department of Marketing & Entrepreneurship (University of Ghana Business School)

Prof. Mahmoud categorised customers with disabilities, limited mobility and language barriers as customers with special needs and   stressed on the need to pay distinct attention to them. 

As part of the training, participants were educated on topics such as dealing with the talkative customer, the suspicious customer, the angry customer, the indecisive customer, and the ‘Know-it-all’ customer. 

The Facilitator also advised participants to listen attentively to customers, avoid being defensive and take responsibility when dealing with customers with difficult behavior.

During the presentation, a five-minute video focusing on customer delivery service was played for participants.

Mrs. Bernice Agudu, in her concluding remarks, appreciated the lessons delivered and said the presentation was interesting and educative. She encouraged participants and personnel to be knowledgeable about the institution and learn to associate with customers. 

Present at the training were Mr. Kwasi Odame, the Deputy Director of Finance, Management Accounting and Payroll; Mr. Karimu Gbene Suglo, Head of Treasury/Cash Office; Mr. Dennis Mensah, Head of Accounts Payable; Mr. Samuel Osei Mensah, Head of Students' Accounts; Mrs. Choice Agbodeka, Assistant Registrar, staff and personnel of the Finance Directorate.