SIFE Team, Chamber pair for business seminar

The Students in Free Enterprise Team from Wayland Baptist University and the Plainview Chamber of Commerce are joining forces to sponsor a seminar to benefit local businesses.

The Customer Relationship Management Workshop is slated for Friday, Nov. 8 and will provide business owners and managers with valuable tips on serving their clients and, ultimately, increasing profitability. Robert Alexander, a 2000 Wayland graduate and a consultant for the Peppers and Rogers Group in Connecticut, will present the three-hour workshop on touchmapping, a system of diagramming all flows of information, value and service responses for a business and diagnosing the points of contact at which information might be lost.

"We want to help benefit our local businesses, and these are tools that will help businesses really reach their customers," said Jason Thompson, a senior at Wayland and president of SIFE. "These tips work for large corporations all the way down to a mom and pop company."

Peppers and Rogers Group is a management consulting firm recognized as the world's leading authority on customer-based business strategy. Consultants work with companies to identify the right strategies that focus on customers and lead to profitability and market leadership. Headquartered in Norwalk, Conn., PRG has offices throughout North America and on five other continents. Their clients have included Agilent Technologies, Bayer Corporation, Ford Motor Company, Jaguar Cards, Verizon, Volvo and the U.S. Postal Service.

A business analyst at PRG since January 2001, Alexander's most recent work included creating a touchmap for Roche Pharmaceuticals and developing online and offline support program strategies for the company. He also developed an Internet strategy for Bank Leumi in Israel, an international banking client. Alexander is considered an expert at PRG in touchmapping and the pharmaceutical industry.

"Both CRM and touchmapping are cutting-edge approaches to business that are being utilized worldwide, and the Peppers and Rogers Group is considered among the leading practitioners of these tools," said Dr. Bobby Hall, associate professor of business and Sam Walton Fellow for the WBU SIFE team. "This workshop is a rare opportunity for West Texas business leaders to learn from a highly respected management consulting firm and take with them tools they can readily apply to improve their own businesses."

The workshop will begin with a barbecue lunch in the McClung University Center (Room 211) at Wayland at 11:30 a.m., followed by the seminar in the Nunn Business Building Auditorium at 1 p.m. The seminar will last until 4 p.m., and participants may earn .4 continuing education credits.

Cost for the event is $30 in advance for the meal and seminar with CEUs ($35 at the door); $20 for the seminar with CEUs only ($25 at the door); and $10 for the seminar only with no CEUs ($15 at the door).

For reservations or more information, contact the Division of Business at Wayland at 291-1020.