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On Stage: Off Stage – Is it for your Firm? By Mark Holton from Smithink on Jun 8, 2016

On Stage Off Stage Is it for your Firm

Approximately 18 months ago I travelled over to Canada to run the Canadian Accounting Technology Conference (CATS). This is the Canadian version of Smithink’s popular Australian ATSA event. On the way over via the US, I was very fortunate to attend the Disney Leadership Excellence in Anaheim, California.

The course was a one day event held at Disney’s Californian Hotel at Disneyland and included a field visit to the back stage area of the Park to meet experienced Managers and witness the “off stage” area of the operation. The course itself was immaculately organised and presented by experienced Disney Managers who have lived the Disney philosophy of “on stage – off stage” for many years.

This system of customer service has always fascinated me. When a guest (not a client or customer) interacts with a Cast Member (not staff or team members) on stage the client experience is a primary motivator. Off stage the Cast Members arrive for work, dress, eat, take breaks, interact with others outside the view of the Guest. When they enter the Park (on stage) through discreet barriers they are immaculately trained, attired and ready to make the Guest experience the very best.

It actually reminded me of a good accounting firm. The clients arrive in a professional reception area, meet the reception team, get offered tea or coffee and their favourite biscuit and then move onto the boardroom. This is the on stage experience. The off stage experience is the work area where the team prepare the information, eat, interact etc out of client view to present a professional service to the client when on stage. We generally enter from doors (maybe not concealed) and then its action time.

Hear more about exceptional customer service by attending the Smithink Practice Manager’s Workshop on July 22, 2016 at the Sheraton on the Park Sydney. Click here for more information.
Don’t wait for other firms to pass you by. The time for action in now!!

Source: Disney Institute “Disney’s Approach to Leadership Excellence” November 2014

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