Tamara Simon's Weekly Blog
Business Insights for RTOs
from my favourite Movies, TV Shows and Books
(and some other bits and pieces)

Does Your RTO Need An Etiquette Lesson?

How good is your client/student service? 

Have things been slipping through the cracks and if so, do you know why? 

Then I’ve got some business etiquette tips to help your RTO.

Business Insights

I don’t know about you but I am constantly amazed at the lack of courtesy which exists today.  I’m a strong believer in good manners and with this technological age, you would think it would be easier than ever to keep in touch.

However, in both business and society generally, I either see less communication rather than more as people choose to email each other for everything rather than phoning someone or leaving their desk to talk to someone; OR I see people, mainly on mobile phones, sharing too much with strangers – be it on trains, buses, planes, in waiting rooms, at the hairdresser etc. 

I miss the days before mobile phones – remember what used to happen – we either found a public phone box or simply waited until we got back to the office or home because nothing was that important!

I’m a huge Frasier fan and there is an episode about how Frasier after holding doors open for people, letting cars in, offering people shelter under an umbrella etc; finally explodes when a person takes their table at the coffee house, after he could see Niles and Frasier were politely waiting for the people to leave before sitting down.  Frasier picked the man up by the scruff of the jacket and threw him out the door saying, “You Sir need to be taught an etiquette lesson!”

This outburst is rewarded with applause, recognition in the paper and callers to his show taking this concept to the extreme including placing scorpions through the mail to someone who had been rude to them.

Now I am not suggesting anything as extreme as this – however, why is it that when we can quickly email a thank you or an acknowledgement, we choose not to do this.

I have submitted many articles to organisations and completed many requests for speakers, and in the majority of cases, I don’t even get an acknowledgment email thanking me for the time I have taken to write the article, complete the form etc.  It is also rare for me to be advised if my article has been chosen for their publication or I have been selected as the speaker for their event.  So unless I do the chasing, I never know.

Even though we are very busy these days, is that really an excuse to be perceived as rude?  What perception are we giving our clients, students and/or staff by our lack of action or attention to detail?

15 Don’t Tips for RTOs

RTOs who are in need of an etiquette lesson DON’T

  • Acknowledge applications/resumes when submitted by potential employees
  • Advise unsuccessful applicants in a timely manner or sometimes not even at all
  • Advise students of estimated and/or updated timeframes relevant to their assessments
  • Reply to emails and phonecalls within 48 hours (or preferably earlier)
  • Hold a staff meeting on a monthly basis
  • Update their website at least every three months
  • Follow up
  • Thank clients/students for prompt payment
  • Thank client/students for choosing to train with them
  • Thank people for their help – be it staff, clients or students
  • Gain feedback from their clients, students and/or staff on how to improve their business
  • Value criticism and see it as an opportunity for improvement
  • Check correspondence including marketing and training material for typos, grammar, punctuation etc
  • Document how their business operates
  • Write down instructions or information for their clients, students and/or staff


Remember, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.  If potential clients, students and/or employees are not treated in a courteous manner, they could be a negative referral for your RTO when you want them to be either a client/student/employee; or at the very least a strategic alliance.

In this economic climate, not only are more decisions being made on price; but potential clients/students are looking for additional value and strong client service.  If they are not treated well and made to feel special and valued by you and your staff, they will then deselect you and your RTO business.

What’s Next?

So how good is your client/student service? 

Have things been slipping through the cracks and if so, do you know why? 

Are your business systems complimenting your client service standards or hindering them?

And here’s my final thought:

“God gave you a gift of 84 600 seconds today.  Have you used one of them to say thank you?”

William Arthur Ward

Want some help from Tamara – Australia’s Only Dedicated RTO Business Coach?

If you have found some tips and inspiration from this blog (and I hope you have), I’d love you to please share it amongst your RTO contacts and on your social media platforms.

If you would like some help to take you from STUCK to SOLUTIONS… SIMPLY from someone who’s been there, done that, please check out my coaching services on my website


Or contact me direct:

0438 262 727 or tamara@takeanotherlook.com.au

Next Week:       Systems Lessons from Top Gun