Dr. Evelyn Montgomery-White talks customer service at Faculty and Staff Institute

Alcorn State University President Dr. Alfred Rankins Jr. began the annual faculty and staff ceremony by reiterating the importance of making the students feel welcomed on campus.

“We have to serve our students with a smile,” said Rankins. Students have choices. They’re not here because they have to be, but because they want to be.”

The 2015 Faculty and Staff Institute was held Monday, August 17, 2015 in the James L. Bolden Campus Union – Ballroom. The theme of this year’s event was “World Class Customer Service.” Dr. Evelyn Montgomery-White delivered the keynote speech. She expressed how faculty and staff members should go above and beyond to satisfy their customers.

“Instead of giving good customer service, we should give the best customer service,” said White. “We want to impress our customers and make them feel satisfied with the service we give them.”

White said that in this age of the consumer, an institution has to be aware of its competition.

“You’re competing with other colleges. You have to convince students that your school is the best so that they will be interested in attending Alcorn. Students care about how you make them feel.”

White said that a service plan is important in executing goals and pleasing customers.

“You must have a customer service plan. You can’t just let things happen. You have to plan your goals, which is customer satisfaction. You should have your resources in place and deliver the proper training to your employees. People form opinions of an institution by their experience. You can’t do the same thing if you want to get better.”

White explained a few characteristics of good customer service.

“Appropriate attire is key because your customers will give you credibility for being professional. Listen and communicate effectively. It also makes a difference what tone of voice you speak to people with because it makes a difference in how people feel about you and your institution. Be courteous and display a positive attitude toward customers.”

White ended her presentation by going over some dos and don’ts of customer service.

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