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Mona Trains Staff To Be China Ready

October 15, 2013 Association No Comments Email Email

The Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) in Tasmania will be the first Australian tourism business to fully engage the training of its staff under the innovative Welcoming Chinese Visitors program introduced nationally by ATEC and AVANA in partnership over the past year. 
In recognising the need for staff to understand how to meet the needs of the strongly growing Chinese market, MONA is facilitating a day of training this Tuesday (15 Oct) of the three-stage program for staff members from across all areas – from product development to marketing and sales as well as customer service.

“MONA is the first business to train staff members from across all areas to be ‘China Ready’ through the step-by-step Welcoming Chinese Visitors program, showing the leadership and forward thinking of the business,” ATEC Managing Director, Felicia Mariani said.

“Chinese visitors are spending around $29 million over more than 300,000 visitor nights each year in Tasmania, and MONA is taking an important step in ensuring their staff are well equipped to take full advantage of the opportunity.

“We know that these visitors are keen to spend and it is important the tourism industry knows how to connect with the Chinese tourist by offering the service they expect.”

MONA’s Business Manager Mark Wilsdon said the decision to put members of staff from across all areas through the course was recognition of the growth in visitor numbers from China, in line with MONA’s interest and ongoing research in the Chinese market.

“Through the ATEC Welcoming Chinese Visitors program we have a fantastic opportunity to train our staff to a level where they can confidently and considerately accommodate Chinese visitors at MONA,” Mr Wilsdon said.

“MONA’s success is based on being ahead of the curve and giving our customers what they want, now and into the future and having our staff trained and ready to greet Chinese visitors is essential to our product’s progress.

“Chinese visitors are spending almost $4 billion a year in Australia and having our business, and other Tasmanian tourism operators, skilled-up for this market is vital to our state’s ability to attract visitation.”

Ms Mariani said the MONA training session was the latest in a range of training sessions run by ATEC in Tasmania over the past 12 months.

“We have run both Export Ready and the Welcoming Chinese Visitors program at a number of locations in Tasmania, but this is the first large-scale session which will up-skill an entire workplace in providing service to Chinese visitors,” Ms Mariani said.

The Welcoming Chinese Visitors program, which ATEC has developed in partnership with specialist training organisation, AVANA, has already trained around 1000 operators across Australia with modules designed to meet specific organisational and staff needs through three stages of learning:

Product Ready – Ensuring products are export ready is the first step to success in the export tourism marketplace.  Operators will develop fundamentals to effectively engage and explore the merits of the China market for their product.

Sales Ready – Looking at the complex issues of connecting with trade distribution channels in China.

Service Ready – Builds understanding and awareness of how to deliver the service and standards Chinese consumers expect when visiting Australia.

“Being ‘service ready’ is a critical component in meeting the needs of Chinese visitors, but being ‘product ready’ and then ‘sales ready’ are also crucial streams of learning for Australia in successfully connecting with China.

“By using a number of case studies, operators see how these businesses have successfully stepped into the Chinese market and understand, through their real life experience, what to do and what not to do.”

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