Visually Impaired Public Servant Recognized for High Quality Customer Service

Photo: JIS Photographer Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson-Miller (2nd right), joins Chief Judge of the Public Sector Customer Service Competition, Mrs. Carol Roynes (left) and Cabinet Secretary, Ambassador Douglas Saunders, in congratulating visually impaired awardee, George Napier who was recognised for High Quality Customer Service at the award ceremony held on Thursday July 11 at the Terra Nova All Suites Hotel in St. Andrew.

George Napier was one of 15 individuals recognised for high quality customer service at the Public Sector Customer Service Competition 2012/13 awards ceremony held on Thursday, July 11 in Kingston.

The category for which Mr. Napier received an award, ‘Honourable Mentions’ for High Quality Customer Service—recognises individuals who have impressed the judges with the evidence presented on their performance in customer service and service-delivery over the past two years.

Awardees in this category are deemed as deserving of an honourary mention for their service-delivery efforts. They are also selected based on public feedback as having displayed caring attitudes, high levels of professionalism, and commitment to providing quality service. Mr. Napier and the other awardees received a plaque of recognition.

Mr. Napier, who is visually impaired, is employed to the National Land Agency (NLA), as the operator of the registry in the Estate Management Division. He manages the requests and queries of customers. He also assists customers in finding the various offices in the division.

Mr. Napier’s supervisor Chaseion Rodney is very proud of his achievement.

“I am very proud of George as he does not allow his disability to hinder him from executing his work, and helping others,” she said.

Over the years, Mr. Napier has adapted to his surroundings. He recognises the various staff members by the sound of their footsteps and by the various scents that they wear. He is also adept at assessing the needs of the clients he interacts with, directing them to the personnel best suited to address their concerns, whether by phone or by personally taking them to the respective departments.

“Once a lady came into the office and asked how I could assist her in finding the offices if I was blind. Before leaving she said that she was amazed that I was able to take her to the correct office without making a mistake,” he said.

Mr. Napier has been employed at NLA since June 1994. Prior to working in the Estate Management Division, Mr. Napier was the main switchboard operator at the agency.

“I used to operate the switch board and write messages at the same time. Also when callers explained who they would like to speak with I put them on hold and then transfer them to the extension it should be sent to,” he said.

Due to Mr. Napier’s inability to see, he was relocated when a computerised telephone system was implemented.

Co-workers of “Georgie”, as he is affectionately called, describe him as always neatly attired and often-times humourous.

Mr. Napier’s services are extended beyond the doors of NLA, as he supports the activities of his alma mater, Salvation Army School for the Blind and Visually Impaired Children. He gives of his time and monetary resources to the students of the school who rely heavily on similar donations for the payment of their school and meal fees.

“Take my approach; do not fear any task due to your disability, do your best. I try to do more than those who are not blind at times,” Mr. Napier said as he advised other disabled person who work in service areas.

BY: SHELLY-ANN IRVING

JIS Social