Hospitality training draws from entire county

The importance of a welcoming attitude and the abundance of “things to see” in Greene County was highlighted at a customer service and hospitality training provided by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach on Tuesday, April 25, at the Historical Society Museum. Twenty-nine persons from several Greene County towns attended.

The two-hour training was conducted by Jane Goeken, ISU Extension specialist of Spencer. She provided the information under an agreement from the Central Iowa Regional Tourism in conjunction with the Greene County Chamber of Commerce.

Goeken provided the participants with several economic facts about Greene County and Iowa tourism. Greene County ranked 88th of the 99 counties in economic impact of U.S. travelers. U.S travelers’ 2015 expenditures in Greene County were estimated at $6.32 million while travelers’ expenditures in Iowa totaled $8 billion.

The group experienced an interactive role play regarding interaction and communication, learning that 7 percent is words; tone of voice is 38 percent, and the highly important body language communication at 55 percent.

Deb McGinn of Jefferson Matters: Main Street gave a computer slide presentation with narration about scenic and historic places to visit in Greene County. The photos encompassed all of Greene County including parks, historic sites, and interesting events in each of the towns located within the county. This will be available for others to see upon request.

Goeken highlighted the Visitor Ambassador program, and encouraged FAM tours (familiarization) of local businesses and attractions, with a planned reward for Ambassadors.

At the conclusion door prizes were awarded for those who attended the program. These were donations of two passes courtesy of the Sierra Theater, and $25 in Chamber Checks from Jefferson Matters: Main Street.

Individuals attending were provided goodie bags including coupons from local businesses, and various Greene County tourist brochures.

The training was a collaborative effort of the Thomas Jefferson Gardens, Greene County Chamber, Greene County Extension, Bell Tower Community Foundation, Greene County Historical Society, and Jefferson Matters: Main Street.

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