Chamber introducing Mystery Shopper program 

The Whistler Chamber of Commerce is beefing up the Spirit Program this year, as people who have taken the Spirit course know.

And additional changes are on the horizon.

For 20 years the Spirit Program has been geared toward improving customer service in the resort. A discounted season pass, courtesy of Whistler-Blackcomb, has been the most tangible reward for participating in the program.

But with the Olympics just two years away, the desire to realize the full potential of such a program lead the chamber to develop a three year comprehensive strategy to get serious about improving service levels in the resort.

“When I first started at the chamber, business owners kept telling me that we had to do something to improve service in the resort,” said President Louise Lundy. “Well, we are doing something and we need everyone’s participation and support to make it a success.”

The chamber unveiled its new Whistler Spirit program brand, logo and tag line “Live it, Give it” and gave a progress update to business leaders at the Nov. 7 Spirit luncheon and Nov. 8 breakfast. The program is driven by the service mantra “connect, assist, exceed” and is supported by three interlinking programs:

Learning – to improve leadership and provide service skills to those who interact with our guests.

Reviewing – to measure success and set benchmarks to continually improve.

•  Rewarding to recognize, reward and reinforce exceptional service delivery.

The chamber has made some significant changes to the “Learning” program with improved workshops held this year at Millennium Place. Participants enjoy an entertaining Whistler “how to connect, assist, exceed” service video and are engaged in interactive exercises. There is also information on the upcoming 2010 Games so that resort employees can communicate what’s going on in 2010 to our guests.

As part of the “Reviewing” program, the chamber is excited to launch a new Mystery Shopper program to help businesses measure their success at connecting, assisting and exceeding with customers. For just $60/month, chamber shoppers will visit businesses four times and provide comprehensive reports and recommendations to help them work with employees to improve service delivery. There will only be 100 spots for customer-facing businesses on a first come, first served basis. Businesses can sign up on the chamber’s website at www.whistlerchamber.com.

The chamber will also beef up the “Rewarding” program in the new year by recognizing “service stars” in the local papers and setting up a nomination process on their website. Also, the annual American Express Service Recognition Awards Dinner will be greatly improved this year to elevate its status to “the Oscars of Service in Whistler”.

Anyone can attend a Whistler Spirit workshop for just $25 or with the purchase of a Whistler Blackcomb Spirit Pass. To register, call the chamber at 604-932-5922

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