Upfront and Online by Nick Jones
n June 1, the Food & Beverage Department launches an online feedback and information forum for Members and employees. Hosted by Food & Beverage’s consultant, Challenges Five, this venture marks the latest in a series of ongoing projects to continually improve the Club’s dining services. The online arena will allow Members an insight into the workings of the restaurants and provide them with a direct, open way to offer comments, exchange ideas and ask questions to those in charge. According to Bill Hurley, 58, of Challenges Five, the idea for the program was born out of the many focus group sessions he has conducted with Members since the Club moved to Takanawa at the start of 2008. “Over the past several years, we have collected much data relating to Member satisfaction and employee engagement and, as we continued to see this base of knowledge grow, it seemed most appropriate to find ways to share it with others,” Hurley says. “In this case, the others are the Members and the employees.” Since Member satisfaction dipped to an all-time low of 61 percent last year, Food & Beverage Director Michael Marlay and his team have been busy seeking the thoughts of Members and revamping menus and service. Marlay says the goal is
to increase satisfaction to 75 percent this year, nearer to the record-high of 78 percent in the final months before the Club’s move from Azabudai. It’s hoped that this month’s rollout will help the department to edge closer to that target. “We will use the site to solicit feedback on an ongoing basis, and we know that honest feedback is the most important factor in adjusting the operation for the better,” Hurley says. “We will share responses to Member comments on the site, as well as actions taken by the team as a result of Member comments.” Besides showing Member reaction to all aspects of dining and banqueting at the Club, the site will feature the results of the biannual employee satisfaction survey, as well as details of staff training and development. The aim is nothing short of total transparency. “Through the acquisition of feedback and the sharing of information, we will bring the Members, the employees and the Club ever closer together,” says Hurley, “and that can only be a positive for everyone involved.” ® To access the feedback pages and provide your own comments, look for the link in the Wine & Dining section of the Club website.
10 June 2009 iNTOUCH
Tokyo American Club’s monthly magazine, iNTOUCH