Entrepreneur and founder of Irish Business Intelligence Olwen Dawe has been named as one of the new ambassadors for the Towns of Excellence programme, which has been officially launched in the west of Ireland. Towns of Excellence is a national initiative which has been set up to research, recognise and reward towns and businesses for achieving excellence in a variety of business disciplines including customer service. The Towns of Excellence Institute is committed to helping raise the bar for business standards in businesses and towns throughout Ireland. The process for registering is as simple as logging on to www.townsofexcellence.com
Olwen, who is based in Mayo, founded Irish Business Intelligence, which provides coaching and consultancy services to small businesses, start-ups and developing business in the areas of development, communications, planning and advice. Olwen joins existing ambassador RTÉ’s Retail Therapy star Senator Fergal Quinn, who launched the programme nationally at the end of May.
The initiative invites towns to unite their business communities to compete for titles such as ‘Towns of Excellence in Customer Service’. Offering assessment, monitoring and training services, the initiative will involve regular audits on businesses and towns and will culminate in an annual awards ceremony where they will be acknowledged for their efforts in ensuring excellence in customer service in their business.
“I am absolutely delighted to be involved in the Towns of Excellence Institute; their purpose and ethos resonates very clearly with my own businesses,” Olwen said. “It’s very clear now, having experienced a recession and the ongoing repercussions we deal with every day, Ireland’s businesses need to limber up and realise that there is more to operating a business than simply offering a service; it’s about offering a great and professional service. Senator Quinn highlights this regularly in the retail domain. However, I think businesses in general must pay attention to their operating style and ensure that they are doing their very best. It’s an honour for me to help promote the Institute in the west of Ireland.”
Brenda Farrell, MD, Towns of Excellence Institute, added: “We are thrilled to have someone of Olwen’s calibre and enthusiasm on board and in particular to champion the Towns of Excellence in the west. Olwen has already established herself as a well-respected business consultant and entrepreneur in the province and her endorsement is a huge boost. The initiative has already been introduced to a number of towns including Castlebar, Carlow, Athlone, and Wexford, with businesses and organisations like Chambers, County Enterprise Boards and Town Councils in these towns already snapping up the opportunity to take part. In addition we’re looking forward to appointing champions in the other regions soon.”
On signing up businesses are automatically entered into a customer service assessment process under which their businesses will be mystery-visited twice in year one and a full confidential report provided on their performance. Businesses will also be offered the opportunity to complete FETAC Level 5 Certificate in Customer Service Training Online. Each business that gets involved will ensure they drive professionalism within their company which in turn will help raise the bar for general business standards throughout Ireland. www.townsofexcellence.com