Every day presents new challenges in the workplace, and it is easy to assume that you just have to play it by ear. Sure, there are bound to be some situations that are unexpected and catch you off-guard. However, careful preparation and a team effort can help to navigate the unpredictable nature of business in the events industry. Things happen, and it’s essential that you and your team are ready to tackle any obstacle.
Role-playing is an excellent strategy to keep yourself and your employees fresh and prepared for any situation that comes their way. While the specific details may vary from case to case, most issues fall under particular categories — dissatisfied customers, unexpected budget adjustments, family disagreements, and so on.
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Thus, using role-playing exercises to prepare for general interactions can typically cover a more specific situation as well. It helps employees become more confident and prepared, while also providing a cohesive client experience for all.
Here are some considerations for enhancing your training techniques through role-playing.
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Use real-life scenarios
Take a look back at past events and identify tricky situations in which extra training could have helped. This is a great place to start with role-playing. If, for example, the cake vendor never showed up to a wedding last year, gather your team and determine the best way to handle this through active engagement. Assign everyone a role and observe how they work together.
Get everyone involved
Role-playing does not have to be specific to a department — salespeople can get just as much out of the experience as operations staff, and vice versa. Make it a team activity and present different scenarios to see how they work together. There is a good chance your employees will play off each other and share personal strategies for increased success. The more you can simulate a situation, the less guidance they will need in real-time — which, of course, leads to a better client experience.
Schedule time regularly
As with anything, practice makes perfect. Training should be an ongoing experience for staff, not just a one-off routine they have to sit through. Try to do it monthly to keep ideas and techniques fresh in their mind, as well as provide the opportunity to address new situations that may have arisen. Continued education is vital for a sustainable business, so keep an eye out for learning opportunities and share your own lessons regularly.
Ultimately, role-playing leads to a staff that is better trained and less prone to making mistakes in the field. The interactivity of the exercises also acts as an excellent team building strategy, as it pushes your employees to solve problems together.
Take the time now to build in role-playing as a regular activity in your business. Your employees (and your business) will see and feel the results right away. Confidence plays a significant role in job performance, so an employee that is poised and self-assured is one that is better equipped to serve clients. In return, you will see increased profit and client retention for the company at large.