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Sunday, October 17, 2010

Compete Through Service Symposium: A source for services thought leadership.

I credit two early sources for much of my perspectives on service and leadership – formative years spent as an officer in the Canadian Navy and in a program associated with the Arizona State University Center for Services Leadership.

The Navy is the sort of place that, once you leave, you really can’t go back to refresh your perspective - at least not formally.

The Center for Services Leadership, its objective in bridging the business & academic communities to compete strategically through the profitable use of services, is much more accommodating. They offer array of continuing programs, including service business webinars, cutting edge research & resources, and a series of events capped by the annual Compete Through Service Symposium.

Symposium is the venue for some of the best service content I’ve ever taken in, and year-after-year is a veritable who’s who of businesses engaging in service excellence. This year, Avnet, DuPont, Marriott, IBM, Zane’s Cycles and Zappos, and others are represented as content providers.

Symposium offers any service business great lessons with practical application for:
- Service design & innovation
- Use of technology to facilitate the service experience and service environments
- Transformation product-based companies into services oriented companies
- Creation of lasting customer loyalty
- Service process improvement by mapping the service encounter
- Service recovery
- Service culture & values
- Service differentiators for B2B

This year, I’m proud to be not just an attendee, but a contributing member of the social media team. You can look for updates on Twitter under the hashtag #CTSS, in the Center’s official blog, and in this space.

This post preaches to the converted, but I know hundreds of service business professionals that care deeply about creating customer value and want to continue to get better at their craft. Regardless of level or organizational function, the Compete Through Service Symposium has content, experts and opportunities to help any business or individual differentiate on service.

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