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Cottsway Housing Association

Services: Brand strategy and development/People and team development/Strategic communications

‘Do good, feel good’ – customer service training for staff

Oxfordshire-based Cottsway Housing Association commissioned us to design and deliver a programme of online training for all of its 140-plus colleagues during summer 2021. The sessions built on earlier work we’d done together around written and spoken tone of voice, and aimed to reinforce the organisation’s ‘We Are Cottsway’ framework of essential attitudes and behaviours.

The ‘Do good, feel good’ title was inspired by a comment from a member of the organisation’s housing team – about the ‘win-win’ outcomes and emotions that flow from excellent customer service. The sessions focused on practical ways to help colleagues create positive, lasting impressions through their contact with customers. We considered this especially in the light of recent changes affecting Cottsway’s business, including the coronavirus pandemic and new IT systems. 

We encouraged people to reflect on how, in every customer contact, they – as an individual – are Cottsway, with sole responsibility for the reputation gained or lost. Using scenarios based on real-life past service situations, colleagues explored how situations look from different perspectives, the factors that influence how people behave, and the desired outcomes. We also asked people to think about companies and brands they admire that Cottsway might emulate.

The sessions revealed a 30-strong group of people from across the business who were especially engaged and enthusiastic about customer service. They’ve gone on to provide a useful resource to keep up the focus on positive customer relationships, by helping with induction of new colleagues, project work and other initiatives to maintain momentum.

Following the success of this training, Cottsway asked us to produce a mini, video version for new staff joining the Association. 

The training provided by Creative Bridge was useful and informative. The sessions gave staff a thought-provoking insight into how their responses to situations can make or break a customer’s opinion of the organisation and our reputation. The video version is part of our induction programme for new staff, to keep the message about positive customer relationships at the forefront of everyone’s minds.
Harpreet Chander, head of projects