Thursday, August 28, 2008

New Book The Power of Retention Tells Colleges how to Retain More Students Through Academic Customer Service

New Book The Power of Retention Tells Colleges Academic Customer Service is the Key to Improve Learning and Graduation Rates of Students

Too many colleges and universities do not realize students are their clients in a very unique business called higher education. Too many seem to really believe the old joke “this would be a great place to work if it weren’t for the students”. As a result, colleges and society both lose when 72 percent of students quit prior to graduation due to poor or weak academic customer service. Students and their families lose large sums of money and the chance for a better life through a good career. Colleges lose money from lost tuition and the need to spend even more to replace the students who quit. And the society loses educated workers and individuals who could make contributions to the economy, sciences, medicine and our culture.

But this can stop if colleges learn how to provide good academic customer service as discussed and prescribed in The Power of Retention; More Customer Service in Higher Education, the new book by international academic customer service and retention expert Neal A Raisman., PhD published by The Administrator’s Bookshelf.

In the follow-up book to his best selling book Embrace the Oxymoron Raisman explains how students decide to attend and stay or leave a college based upon academic customer service. “After assisting over 240 schools in the US, Canada and Europe and listening to 1000’s of students, one thing is absolutely clear” Raisman says. “Students and their parents have a consumer approach to education starting with bargaining over the tuition sticker price all the way through a collective set of expectations for a return on their emotional and financial investments. Today’s students expect a greater level of service than ever before. And if they don’t get it, they’re off to another college down the road or on-line.”

“But it is not the customer service of a store but of academia, of education. In a store someone goes in buys a shirt and leaves. Easy to be nice to someone for five minutes. Students and parents are buying and investing in a future life at a college. Buying decisions are made every day, every class, and every experience so the demands are always higher. That requires a very different, more sophisticated relationship building to retain a student through graduation and into the alumni donation years.”

Raisman discusses how today’s college students are members of the ME generation as well as how that changes the way we must work with them to retain them in college. He also explains how academic customer service is not like any other leading to 15 principles that are unlike those of business. These include The customer is not always right. Just ask any student who has taken a test and Every student wants to attend Cheers University and every employee wants to work there.

Raisman also provides practical formulas for determining the real dollar value of retention as well as many down to sensible and inexpensive how-to’s that can be easily applied such as learning from Captain Kangaroo; how to survey a market for real results; overcoming phone rudeness; dealing with the way students communicate; Gordon Gee’s bowties; ten steps to a more secure campus and how to make students more compliant and enthusiastic learners so teaching can be fun again.

The Power of Retention: More Customer Service in Higher Education by Neal A Raisman, PhD can be obtained through the Administrator’s Bookshelf ( ) ($27.95 + $4.95 S/H)

The Administrator’s Bookshelf provides publications and seminars for new and seasoned academic administrators at all levels of college operations with practical, convenient and quickly applicable information and direction on how to perform, deal with or achieve success in the tasks and chores of being an administrator. 207-713-7130

We are always looking for good books and booklets on topics of interest to college administrators and managers. So If you have a topic to suggest contact


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