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The Customer's First Impression
Figure 1-4.—Is the glass half empty or half full? Let’s  look  at  some  specific  instances  in  which attitude can play a big part. Consider the situation of PN2 Boat who works in the educational services office aboard a carrier. PN2 Boat knows that PN3 Doe, who works in the personnel office and is in charge of the leave tickler, submitted canceled leave papers to the disbursing office without authorization. PN2 Boat also knows that PN3 Doe informed the DKs that the leave that  was  supposed  to  have  been  taken  by  those members  was  not  taken,  and  that  they  should  not charge these members. Contrary to what PN3 Doe told the  disbursing  office,  PN2  Boat  knows  that  the  leave was actually taken by these members. What if PN2 Boat should say to himself “Oh well, PN3 Doe does not work for me; he is the personnel office supervisor’s responsibility.  Anyway,  I’m  short  and  really  shouldn’t care  about  what  happens  in  the  personnel  office.”  What will happen as a result of PN2 Boat’s attitude? First of all, the individuals who should be charged for the leave they took will not get charged, and no disciplinary action will be brought against PN3 Doe. Do you think this is dereliction of duty on the part of PN2 Boat? We think  so. Let’s  consider  the  attitude  that  prompted  PN2  Boat not to take action. It is the same attitude demonstrated by  the  Mess  Management  Specialist  (MS)  who scorches  the  eggs;  the  liberty  boat  coxswain  who drives into every wave to create lots of spray; or the Hospital  Corpsman  (HM)  who  loses  your  shot  record. PN2 Boat did not care because he had a short-timer’s attitude and was a good friend of one of the members who was supposed to have been charged leave. Also, he  did  not  care  because  he  was  not  PN3  Doe’s supervisor. As for the MS, he had already eaten. In the case of the liberty boat coxswain, he was in this duty section and was going no farther than fleet landing. As for the HM, he would not end up with a sore arm from the   extra   shots   you   might   have   to   take.   These individuals were not interested in doing a good job. They  were  just  going  through  the  mechanics  of  doing a job but not taking the responsibility for doing it well. Why  are  we  bothering  to  talk  about  attitudes? After all, people are people, and you cannot change human  nature.  This  is  not  true!  Human  nature  is constantly  changing—as  attitudes  change.  HOW do attitudes change? First, it takes you to recognize that a need for change in attitude is desirable. Second, you have  to  do  something  about  it  or  take  appropriate action to make the change. Only  you can do it. No other person can force you to change. Changing your attitude is just like setting goals for yourself; you must combine vision  with  action.  It  is  just  like  wanting  to  do something, determining what needs to be done, and doing it. No  doubt  you  have  seen  a  child  being  carried kicking and screaming into a doctor’s office for a shot. The child’s negative attitude is based on fear of the immediate discomfort of getting a shot. Why do adults go  for  their  shots  without  kicking  and  screaming?  An adult’s  positive  attitude  is  based  on  the  knowledge  that the  immediate  discomfort  of  a  shot  is  insignificant compared to the desirability of preventing disease. As we increase our knowledge and understanding, our outlook   on   life—our   attitude—becomes   more positive. As a PN, you can be sure your attitude will have  an  effect  on  your  ability  to  deal  with  your customers. ROLE OF THE CUSTOMER Before we talk about the role of the customer, let’s first consider the term  customer. It is a familiar word, and all of us in the Navy are frequently considered to be  customers.  We  often  go  to  other  offices  for assistance.  As  customers,  we  always  expect  to  be provided  the  very  best  possible  service.  In  reality,  we do not always receive the kind of service we deserve or expect from those serving behind the counter. Your role as a customer is to be courteous, tactful, and respectful to the person providing assistance to you.  When  you  make  the  person  assisting  you  feel important, you are encouraging that person to be more aware  of  the  expected  service  he  or  she  needs  to provide. If you feel that the person is not providing you with  the  assistance  you  seek  or  expect,  it  is  your responsibility to bring the matter to the attention of a more  senior  and  knowledgeable  individual,  such  as  the person’s  supervisor.  As  the  customer,  you  should never leave an office unsatisfied. You should leave 1-9

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