Supporting your customers: Dementia Action Week

Supporting your customers: Dementia Action Week

Over the past few weeks we’ve been looking how Postmasters go above and beyond to support their customers every day.

Post Office have been working with the Alzheimer’s Society and the NFSP to look at ways to make it easier for Postmasters to support customers living with dementia. The NFSP have been doing brilliant work and have provided ‘Dementia Friends’ training across the country, alongside a significant number of area managers.  

What is a ‘Dementia Friend’?

A Dementia Friend is someone who has learnt a little bit more about what it’s like to live with dementia and then turns that understanding into action. Dementia refers to a set of symptoms that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving and language – problems which are commons across a range of different vulnerabilities from learning difficulties to people going through a time of crisis.

To become a Dementia Friend and learn how you can best serve these customers, simply head to this page with the code POSTOFFICE12345, follow the instructions to watch at least two 5 minute videos. 

Benefits to your Business

The Purple Pound, or the spending power of people with disabilities and the families, is worth a massive £249 billion to the UK economy. That’s a huge amount of untapped spending. Alzheimer’s Society research predicts that there will be over 1 million of us living with dementia by 2021.

80% of people living with dementia say that shopping is one of their favourite activities, and 83% actively change their shopping habits to places that are more accessible and dementia-friendly. Plus, over half of Gen Z (people aged 16 – 25) say that a brand being socially responsible influences their spending habits. 

Top Tips

  1. Improve staff awareness and understanding by becoming a Dementia Friend and encouraging your colleagues, friends and family to do the same
  2. Ensure all signage is clear and at eye level wherever possible
  3. Avoid dark or black mats – they can be seen as holes in the ground by people living with dementia and cause anxiety
  4. Ensure the branch is well-lit with as much natural light as possible (think about removing old adverts or clutter from your doors and windows)
  5. If a customer appears distressed and space allows, take them away from the queue to a quieter space where they can take their time

There’s lots more information about how to make your business more dementia-friendly (and therefore more accessible to many more customers) on the Alzheimer’s Society website.