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February 26, 2020 - Lethbridge Sun Times/Shopper - page 21 SUN TIMES/SHOPPER


simply fulfil a client’s request without socializing or discussing any topic beyond the scope of the task in front of you. However, this has since changed.


Professional familiarity W


ork that involves interacting with customers has evolved over the years. In the past, it was more common practice to


Today customer service representatives are encouraged to chat with customers and connect with them on a more human level. It is not uncommon to discuss the weather, weekend plans or even your love for a certain dessert as you pay for a new dress or baking tool. If you frequent a particular store, you may even catch up with your favourite cashier on their current life events. However, one expectation has always stayed in place: Professionalism. As much as we enjoy a quick laugh shared between customer and employee, we still marvel at experiences where a representative is as professional as they are friendly. We appreciate both being spoken to politely and helped efficiently, but the lines have blurred and both representative and customer may have lost touch with acceptable forms of interaction in the workplace. Let me explain: I was on the phone with a customer


Helpful Etiquette


by Mable Stewart


customer on the line. This was surely not my cup of tea, and I’m sure many would agree it is not theirs either. My experience over the phone reminded


me of an article I read a few years ago in the Sunday Globe. The writer of this article was frustrated by telemarketers who frequently called his house looking for an “Alfred.” On answering the phone, when he acknowledged that he was the person they were looking for, this man was shocked to hear the caller address him by his first name without having been granted permission to do so. He felt that if someone was calling him with a


professional request, they should not address him with too much familiarity in order to seem friendly. He noted that he


would have appreciated being referred


to by his last name, or in a more formal nature until a more casual relationship was established. Too much familiarity could run the risk of


service representative who surprised me with something I hadn’t expected from someone in that profession. I had called in to be assisted with a certain task, and instead of having me on hold while working on my query, this particular representative kept me on the line. As I waited to hear back from them, I suddenly heard a whistle come through the phone. I simply could not believe my ears! I do not know why the representative chose to whistle as she worked, but it is clear that she did not realize how unpleasant and unprofessional it was for her to whistle a tune with a


tainting our professionalism at work. Just as we encourage a friendly chat and a genuine smile in the workplace, it is still chic to speak and act professionally at all times. On both sides of the counter, people who stand out positively are those who are able to strike the delicate balance of professional familiarity. Greeting with “hello” instead of “hey,” placing an over-the-phone customer on hold, or refraining from muttering on the phone as a client are good places to start. It helps to take cues from the other person, too. Let us strive to practise professionalism no matter where we are. It creates a positive experience for everyone involved and helps our client-focused interactions to go much smoother. Mable Stewart is a Lethbridge-based


etiquette and image consultant. She can be contacted by email at helpfuletiquette@gmail.com.


T ank you Let b idge We are thrilled and honoured to be voted Lethbridge’s Best of the Best two years in a row!


Shear Persuasion is proud to be your full service eco-friendly salon & spa.


We appreciate our community for the continued support!


To celebrate, we invite you to our Customer Appreciation on Saturday, March 7th from 1 to 5 p.m. -Check us out on Facebook for more details!


We look forward to serving you and as always we welcome new faces!


Voted #1 Hair Salon Voted #1 Spa


403-329-3229


363 Staff ord Drive N. www.shearpersuasion.ca


Average Joe’s is under new ownership, Lonny Schmidt, effective Feb 1, 2020


On behalf of AJs Staff & Management, Lonny would like to


thank al who voted and sup orted AJ’s! NOW OPEN @ 11:30AM FOR LUNCH, Full Menu offered


Stay Tuned for BIG CHANGES = RENOVATIONS & NEW MENU ONGOING EVENTS:


• EVERY WEDNESDAY $0.47 WING NIGHT & KARAOKE • EVERY 2nd FRIDAY - DUELING PIANOS WITH CAL TOTH, ANNA MCBRYAN & KATE LAROQUE • SATURDAY NIGHT KARAOKE (unless events/concerts or UFC)


UPCOMING EVENTS: • FEB 22 – BOXING: FURY vs WILDER. NOW SHOWING ALL MAJOR BOXING PPV • FEB 28 – ROCK YOUR YOUTH FUNDRAISER FOR 5TH ON 5TH • MARCH 7 – UFC 248 • MARCH 17 – ST. PATRICK’S DAY PARTY • MARCH 19 – MIDGET WRESTLING WARRIORS • APRIL 4 – MIKE DAMBRA COMEDY NIGHT • APRIL 11 – PETTY NICKS TRIBUTE SHOW • APRIL 18 – UFC 249 • APRIL 24 – OZZY at AVERAGE JOE’S • MAY 25 – IKONS KISS TRIBUTE SHOW


CALL TO BOOK A TABLE TO ANY OF OUR EVENTS 403-942-2563


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