Ryan's Blog

Making Belleville Friendlier through Customer Service

Belleville needs to become a leader in customer service. I’m hearing too often, meeting with people at the door, experiences where Belleville residents have had a bad experience with City Hall, whether that be in obtaining permits, trying to start a business, getting an email back from city staff, or feeling that their voice is generally not heard or listened to.

I want to enact a culture where we seek our resident’s feedback and we make sure they feel valued in what they have to say.

I come from an industry that understands and leads customer service.

I started this customer service training with Carnival Cruise Lines while working with them in 2003. Back then they were the best (alongside Disney and McDonalds) at training employees to treat customers with the utmost care. My favourite company slogan about customer service is actually from Ritz-Carleton: Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and gentlemen.

We need to create a customer service friendly municipality that makes Belleville the number one municipality that its residents would recommend to others, whether that be residents, developers, investors, or builders.

We will ask residents and businesses routinely to rate, on a scale of 1-10, whether you would recommend Belleville to friends and collegues.  9 or 10 out of 10 is a pass, and everything else is a fail.  This is called the Net Promoter Score

The Net Promoter Score will be used monthly to access our city’s performance.


The bottom line is that you are not just residents, you are consumers. You pay taxes, you pay development fees, and politicians work for you.

I will strive to ensure that Belleville improves and builds its customer service that makes this city one that is empathic, progressive, and reactive to issues our residents face daily and makes this a city that you feel confidently you will recommend to all you know.

We do this in hotels through email and text. Text is routinely the way we are conducting these surveys in my industry and I see no reason why we could not roll this out for the city.

We will do this by surveying residents routinely.

We will do this by partnering with the Chamber of Commerce, or another business organization, to survey our business community regularly to know their opinions on all matters of business and, again, to ensure we as a city are being regarded by our own as a great place to do business and invest.

The result will be a city that lives up to its moniker and becomes a friendlier city to its residents and businesses, which will ensure that together we grow.

2 Replies to “Making Belleville Friendlier through Customer Service”

  1. In smaller business’s especially, you learn fast to treat customers well, for without them, you have no business. I remember the fluorescent key tags I used to give out. It was a number one……with, “you are number 1 with us” . I gave out pens, and calendars. I even had t shirts made up. A free haircut at every Belleville Bulls hockey game was a must. We so appreciated our loyal, and new customers. In this busy world, customer service is so important. Many of the big box stores I find are lacking in the Customer Service Attitude. Ryan, your article nails it..thanks for posting it. Sad part is city employees are not the same as people that actually own a business. Many are not held accountable, as I see it. I find social media sometimes has to embarrass some of them to get things done, lol

  2. A focus on customer service would be a great focus for the region – not just city employees. This hooks in with local entrepreneurship. People really appreciate the experience of being cared for w/o being pushed. Patient, helpful, friendly, knowledgeable and respectful service… this is what people look for. A city can become memorable based on this alone!

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