A&E App

Matt Hancock, the Heath Secretary is proud of the NHS’s latest app. It is designed to help patients find the accident and emergency department with the shortest waiting time. He claims that the app will be’ good for patients, good for clinicians’. It won’t work for two reasons, firstly it is tackling the wrong problem … Continue reading A&E App

Let’s agglomerate

A few months ago I went to buy some perfume for my wife’s birthday. She had been dropping hints for a couple of weeks and so I thought I was on a safe bet. I set off for the Metro Centre, a shopping mall not far from where I live and went into Debenhams. The … Continue reading Let’s agglomerate

The same three things

I must have mentioned this over and over again this morning. I was with Simon, a photographer living in the middle of Northumberland, blissfully miles from anywhere and talking to him about developing, or rather redeveloping his business. I have mentioned him before as he is someone I have the pleasure of being involved with … Continue reading The same three things

Rural problems

Over the last year Justin and I have been working with a small number of rural businesses to help them develop. We struggled with what rural meant in this context. Is a rural business one that is based in an area with few homes or other buildings and a low population density? Or is it … Continue reading Rural problems

Tips should be banned

The trades union Unite is delighted that the government has decided to ban restaurant owners from keeping back a share of tips that customers give to staff. According to its website, Unite has been exposing rip-off tipping practices in the hospitality industry since 2008. In response to the announcement, a Unite regional officer Dave Turnbull … Continue reading Tips should be banned

Automated service

The continued rise of automation and online services has made access to information so much easier today than was the case even a few short years ago. The amount of stuff that is at our fingertips is staggering and the increasing use of artificial intelligence is driving enormous efficiency in the contact between a business … Continue reading Automated service

Doing customer service well

National customer service week has come and gone for this year but that doesn't mean that I cannot recognise good service when it happens. Two occasions have stood out for me in the last few weeks that show that a retail experience can still be enjoyable even if, as in one case things go wrong. … Continue reading Doing customer service well