Lack of interest in training seminar irks taxi operator

Williams believes taxi operators should show interest in training opportunities
Williams believes taxi operators should show interest in training opportunities

Board Member of Discover Dominica Authority (DDA) and taxi operator Kelly Williams has made a plea to his peers to take training opportunities offered to them seriously.

As part of Tourism Awareness Month, the DDA hosted a series of one-day training seminars for taxi operators, tour guides, craft and souvenir vendors, hoteliers and bartenders.

Apparently taxi operators did not take great interest in the seminars and this has not gone down well with Williams.

“I have to commend the vendors because you seem to outnumber the taxi drivers and as usual I lament the fact that the taxi drivers don’t take this thing very seriously,” he said at the closing ceremony of the series on Thursday. “Training is something that is supposed to make us better at what we do. We deal with people and at the end of the year information goes to DDA as to how we performed or how satisfied the customers were and everybody knows that when you give a good service and at the end of the service when you get paid, you feel happy.”

Williams pointed out that despite the training being provided, many service providers find themselves reverting to their old ways.

“When you go to the training sessions you should implement the things you are taught,” he noted. “Most of us when we leave, we forget and go back to the same old ways. That’s not why we are trained. When we go back to our stores, our taxis, we are supposed to implement all what we are taught, and no matter how much you know there is always more to learn.”

He noted further that the relationship between the vendors, taxi drivers, custom officers and others in the service industry should be improved.

“The training is not only for the customer, it is about how we deal with our other colleagues,” Williams pointed out. “I know most times the people who are supposed to get that training most times don’t come to the training. As taxi drivers we are supposed to work together with the vendors and the vendors are supposed to work with us.”

He indicated that negative attitudes and undermining of each other should cease if the tourism industry is to thrive.

“At the end of the day we should all be working in harmony and everybody should go home smiling knowing that they had a wonderful day,” he stated. “All of us should work for what we are worth. There was a time when we were in the top four today we are in the bottom two and this is what the training is supposed to do to help bring us back up.”

The training seminar sought to refresh tourism service providers in the key components of the tourism product and the delivery of quality service and aimed at enabling the key players in the tourism industry to achieve excellence in their respective fields.

Session topics included Tour Planning and Operations, Customer Service Management, Stall Décor, Marketing Techniques and Social Media Magic for Small Hotels.

Some 100 participants were awarded certificates of participation at the closing ceremony.


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  1. Taxi driver
    June 30, 2014

    The workshop was advertised as a training for vendors. I am a atxi operator and did not realize that the training was targeted to taxi drivers. Maybe you should also consider the time of the training. The taxi drivers work during the day and it is difficult to leave the route to attend a training. The trainings could be held later in the afternoon or on saturdays.

  2. ?
    June 29, 2014

    you talk like this is something that happens all the time
    So what has the board been doing to ensure that the taxi operators come to the seminars? letter of invitation? Has the board tried any other strategic way of getting the taxi operators more interested in the seminars which are ‘supposed’ to add to the general success and development of the industry?
    The Board should investigate properly why is there lack of interest.
    What areas/matters of concern prevent them from participating….
    alot of times because people on Board they think they all dat next to de seat of Holy Jesus himself….and all de holy they portray themselves as holy they FAIL to have de ability to bring de people together for everyone’s benefit… de Board of Directors who are in charge end up blaming de people below dem for de failures, not reaching set targets/goals…….Kelly go back to de Animal show on Kairi………you seem to be making more appearances in certain other “interests” than your role as a Board member on de Taxi association…your focus and interests are warped……you appear to be more in politics than Taxi/tourism development. You been in dat for to long now…….well de board can continue to sit on their fat laurels and blame those underneath dem for making dem look like fools as directors of an industry that is supposed to be so vital to our nations development.
    Take a Hike
    Go figure out why the taxi operators are not interested?
    Sit down as a Board should and develop proper strategies that will encourage dem to feel like they have a special stake in this tourism business………is not just de big business people with hotel and guest house that important to tourism

  3. Views Expressed
    June 27, 2014

    Ghost, when people, in this case, taxi operators fail to participate deliberately in matters that concerns them in something that is theirs it means they don`t care or have lost interest and faith in their organisation, its leadership, going through the same old stuff and there seems to be no improvement as far as their pocket is concern.
    Remember these taxi operators have families to feed, vehicles to maintain and if money is NOT there after attending courses, workshops for years, the same ole stuff year after year, I would lose interest to. The workshop is needed for the government to put better plans to stimulate the economy and not wasting money on handouts and friendship handshakes. THAT GHOST is NOT investment and does not lead to development….it`s lead to poverty, unemployment, suffering. The tourism industry is NOT growing and the government has become distracted to “quick fix”…”buying loyalty”….”buying friends”….etc. That sounds like a good lyrics for good social commentary calypso.
    Taxi operators are important to Dominica. The Association is key to its smooth operations and need confidence from its leadership to develop and to be profitable, so when I attend a workshop, seminar I need to feel the benefits and that to
    be given good news of financial development and investment in the industry to make a difference in their lives and that of their families.

    Anyway good luck on your initiatives and do not give up.

    • Face the Facts
      June 27, 2014

      Some people think they can be successful without the help of God. They blame the government for their misfortune. Many elements have caused this; not the government. Need I say more?

    • concern
      June 28, 2014

      Can’t you say something without including the gov’t or politic why don’t you respond to the person who spoke about the price you all are charging, yes things are hard but it is all over the world don’t you listen to the news stop crying wolf, when it will be there the world wont listen take are good look around the world and you will say thank God for what he has blessed us with. lets just pray for each other and we might see things differently .have you ever heard of so many kids are homeless in America we don’t have that in Dominica if we do is by choice so sit and take a good look around the world and you will stop criticizing and praying

  4. visitor to Dominica
    June 27, 2014

    Well said,,,,,,I would like to know when is the taxi fare from airport in marigot to Roseau going to be revised?. It is so greedy that with a taxi of 6 people everyone still have to pay 80 dollars. Wat sort of nonsense is that?, this is just crazy nonsense.

    • Face the Facts
      June 28, 2014

      I agree. This is highway robbery. I suppose this is how they make some extra money and considering the distance to and from the airport. They need more taxis.
      Wherever you reside, aside from the West Indies, if others share the taxi, they should share the overall cost. Dominica has no regulations about that. One should be implemented. People are being ripped off especially if the vehicle is a taxi-cab.

  5. New Yorker
    June 27, 2014

    How can a man who needs training more than anyone else advocate for training for others. This man must listen to himself on radio no wonder why the tourism sector in Dominica is in the mess it is now with persons like him as despicable as he sounds

  6. Face the Facts
    June 26, 2014

    You are correct. It is a shame some of them are not interested in a taxi driver training seminar. There are some people who think they know it all and have no interest in learning anything else and about the job. It appears that it bores them when they should be taking a keen interest in what concerns them for their benefit, progress and success.
    I recall when I commenced attending CHS, in my early teens of course, my dear father said to me, “You never stop learning until the day you die” This was motivation in itself. I have not forgotten this and how true it has proved to be. On occasion, during courses of conversations, when the opportunity presents itself, I repeat his words to others.
    Life is truly an on-going learning process. This is one of the reasons why there are always training sessions, re-training and on-going training which assist to keep employees up to date with the times and as a personal development process.
    They could lose out on business with that uncaring attitude. They are serving the public and the tourists/visitors. They should be properly trained so that they could effectively perform their duty as a taxi driver.
    As taxi drivers, they must learn courtesy, respect, how to conduct themselves and speak appropriately to their customers. They must also learn patience. They should not utilize swear words and the likes. Their customers do take note of their deportment.
    It is a job. Obtaining an income and a good income at that is important for daily living. Money is important but they should not look at it solely on the basis of earning an income.
    They must also take an interest in their career and their heart must be in it. In other words, they should love their job and also project it and show their enthusiasm to their customers.
    Making customers feel welcomed, and comfortable, at ease, while transporting them to and from the airport, is part of the job as a taxi driver.
    Arrange another taxi driver training seminar. Make it mandatory that they attend. Ask them to bring a notebook and pen to jot down some helpful points. Give them a test, to test their aptitude. Grade them accordingly. For those who pass the test, give them a diploma. This should also apply to first-time taxi drivers, those who also apply for this position.
    It is a work. It is a position. It is a job and it is a career. Smile and look happy while performing it. :)

  7. Dominica First
    June 26, 2014

    maybe your government Kelly should’ve offered them a little red clinic incentive like the market vendors and they would come. Since the tourist season close, they carrying wind, what did you all expect?

  8. Anonymous
    June 26, 2014

    you seem to forget our off-season training, how well attended it is and much participation.

  9. Anonymous
    June 26, 2014

    Mr. Williams did you know that Discover Dominica only registered 25 taxi operators for that training?. Now you come and try to make taxi drivers look like they are not interested in training. I am a taxi operator and was not allowed to register along with a number of others that I know of so please do not give the impression that we are not interested in training.You of all person should know dam well we are very much interested in training or you choose to stick your head so far up the D.D.A that you forget.

  10. Anonymous
    June 26, 2014

    These training sessions should be mandatory !!!!!

  11. Dominican
    June 26, 2014

    Well said bro. I have noticed that about the taxi drivers myself.

    • Taxi driver
      June 30, 2014

      The workshop was advertised as a training for vendors. I am a atxi operator and did not realize that the training was targeted to taxi drivers. Maybe you should also consider the time of the training. The taxi drivers work during the day and it is difficult to leave the route to attend a training. The trainings could be held later in the afternoon or on saturdays.

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