Service culture: the key to success

Companies are nowadays more and more aware of the importance of service culture. However, they do not always have the internal skills or resources to improve or sustain it.
The HEC alumni magazine met Claire Bonniol, Managing Director UK and Alexis Grabar (MBA.02), Founding Partner of Académie du Service UK, a company specialized in service culture and customer engagement.

This article was published in the HEC Alumni magazine, Hommes & Commerce, in June 2016.

Can you tell us more about the Académie du Service’s evolution?

Claire Bonniol: In 2004, the “Académie du Service” was launched with a start-up and entrepreneurial spirit. The idea was to offer the opportunity to other companies to benefit from the know-how and expertise of the ACCOR group. The entity rapidly gathered 20 employees and developed a portfolio of 250 customers. More than half of our clients are CAC 40 companies and international companies of different size. Following an MBO in 2011, we became a real self-managed company and an independent entity with 30 consultants based in Paris.

How do you differentiate from traditional consulting and training companies?

Alexis Grabar: The “Académie du Service” has developed a unique business model focused on consulting, training and research to promote service culture at all levels. It is a quite rare and innovative business and research approach in the European market. We can rely on our consultants and trainers, who have developed their service marketing, management & HR skills within the ACCOR Group or other service native companies. While strategic management consultants generally start with concepts and then move to the ground, we consider our customers’ service needs and training expectations from an empirical side. We take what makes the success of service-oriented companies, such as ACCOR Group and other best-in-class, to provide to our customers the best practices to enhance their service culture.


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