Training puts Exbury staff on the right track for happy visitors!
Pictured in accompanying image are Welcome Host qualified staff, Nigel Philpott & Gill Heighington and members of the Rothschild family, who own the Gardens.
Exbury Gardens' staff are the key to its success - according to customers - as the Gardens' Steam Railway celebrates its 10th anniversary by passing 60,000 visitors for the first time.
Visitor feedback continues to praise staff on the railway, the buggy and at the gate. Many staff have successfully completed the UK-leading customer service training course Welcome Host, boosting their skills and improving customers' experiences.
Staff recently received Welcome Host certificates from Gardens' Chairman Leopold de Rothschild and Tourism South East Training Manager Gill Heighington, in Exbury's own Sundial Garden.
Exbury Gardens' Commercial and Marketing Manager Nigel Philpott said: "Our staff are our greatest asset and this shows through in market research. Visitors who purchase our all inclusive Exbury Experience ticket and come into contact with our gate, buggy, railway and catering staff come away enthused with the level of knowledge and attitude of our teams. They genuinely enjoy their work and their environment, and communicate this to visitors.
"Our staff are increasingly multi-tasking, with gate staff doubling up with roles on the railway and buggy, and the Welcome Host course was an excellent means of further enhancing their skills and increasing confidence."
Representatives from the Railway, buggy and gate teams undertook the day-long Welcome Host course, trained flexibly to suit the business in-house by Nigel Philpott. Nigel in turn had been trained by Gill to conduct the courses.
Nigel added: "The Gardens, in the south-eastern corner of the New Forest, are celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Steam Railway in 2011, with the Railway set to enjoy a record year for passenger numbers - over 60,000 for the first time. We are always committed to improving customer service, and investing in Welcome Host training has clearly paid off with great visitor feedback focusing on how much the staff are appreciated."