By James Wells

Over 4,000 on-premise venues nationally will participate in a new training initiative called 'Better Nights', launched today by Diageo Australia, the Australian Hotels Association (AHA) NSW and Clubs NSW.

The training program includes an eight minute DVD featuring four two-minute scenarios to train on-premise staff on how to improve the customer experience and deal with challenging situations.

According to Diageo Australia managing director, Tim Salt, there are plans to potentially recruit additional suppliers to join the program and the development of an off-premise training initiative.

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A long term goal is to develop an accreditation program to complement the existing responsible service of alcohol (RSA) program.

“The Better Nights training package builds on the existing mandatory requirements for RSA training to give staff the skills and confidence they need to deal with the minority of customers who cause problems in venues by monitoring and intervening early to prevent incidents from escalating,” said Salt who committed $150,000 to the training program on behalf of Diageo.

“As a producer, we continue to work with our industry partners to help tackle the problem, and this is a great example,” he said.

AHA NSW CEO Sally Fielke said hotels across the state and nationally are working hard to ensure bars were safe and enjoyable locations.

“The AHA NSW is strongly supportive of this training initiative. Staff training that raises the standard of behaviour in venues is good for staff and for our customers,” she said.

“Each week millions of patrons socialise in our hotels. The majority of these people drink and act responsibly. This Better Nights training is about targeting the irresponsible behaviours rather than penalising reasonable people who know how to behave when they go out.”

ClubsNSW CEO Anthony Ball said his members continue to ensure every club in NSW continued to provide a safe environment for all customers and staff while dealing effectively with the small number of customers who caused trouble.

“By providing these simple and accessible training tools, we are sending a clear message to our employees that we are right behind them when it comes to dealing with potentially serious situations at licensed venues,” Ball said.

Sydney venues including Coogee Bay Hotel, Greenwood Hotel and Sticky Bar were consulted during the development of the program.

Better Nights is also supported by Tourism NSW.

To hear more from Tim Salt, click below.

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The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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