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reggisgas

What is your favorite restaurant of all time? 

Why?

Most likely the reason you love your favorite restaurant is not the location, building, music, environment, cost, or the wait staff.  The reason most of us love our favorite restaurant is the food

Reggie’s Barbecue and Wings in Jackson, Tennessee has been around for 29 years.  It has occupied several locations in Jackson; including a shed-like structure with seating for about 10 people to one of its current locations inside a gas station in North Jackson. 

The reasons Reggie’s has survived these less than desirable locations are due to two factors:  A hardworking owner and award-winning food.  People drive from all over West Tennessee to eat some of the best barbecue and wings money can buy. 

A restaurant’s survival or failure depends mainly on the food.  They may have the greatest environment, the best prices, and best looking wait staff, but if the food is below par it is only a matter of time until they close their doors.

Where you work….you are the food

People may come in the door due to your location, they may really enjoy your environment, and they may be thrilled with your products, but they will choose to stay and come back later…because of you! 

When people talk about a business, I have rarely heard anyone complain about the lighting, the carpet color, or the location. 

People bank, shop, or purchase from you because you give them what they are looking for, a relationship and a smile.      

Now…go upgrade your menu!

Remember today:  BE TOP NOTCH FOOD!

By the way…check out Reggi’s BBQ here. (and turn down your speakers)

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Window Washer and Pidgeons

 

On a recent trip to Chicago I saw something truly inspiring. 

Throughout the trip I interacted with people who had a financial interest in being excellent at their job, and in providing excellent service.

I met doormen who opened doors, carried baggage, hailed taxi cabs, and made small talk, all with a wide smile on their faces. 

I met shuttle drivers who offered facts about the history of Chicago and asked about my hometown, all with smiles on their faces.

I met restaurant waiters who took their time explaining menus and going as far as to bring out every cut of meat available for me to choose what looked the best.  They made recommendations and praised my selections, all with huge smiles on their faces.  

All of these men and women HAD to be excellent at their job.  If they were anything but wonderful, I may choose to stay in a different hotel, take a different shuttle, or eat at a different chop house.  I appreciated their service, but recognize the motivation behind their actions.

Then I witnessed a window washer at the O’Hare Airport.  I am sure I was the only one watching him.  Sitting in my car waiting to be taken to downtown Chicago, with taxis and limos speeding around us, everyone trying to get to their destination, surely no one noticed him.  I watched as he ran a wet sponge down the window, cleaning off weeks of grime and dust.  I noticed how he was careful to work around a bracket holding the enormous window.  I looked on as he overshot with the sponge and soaped the bracket.  I watched as he took out a rag, wrapped it around his finger, and carefully wiped the excess soap off of the bracket.  He was practicing excellence in his window washing career.

He did all this in hiding.  He had no reason to impress me.  I am sure if he had left the soap to dry on the bracket, no one would have known otherwise…but he didn’t.  He practiced excellence. 

You may think your job is mundane or small, but take a lesson from the window washer at O’Hare Airport in Chicago. 

Be excellent for the sake of being excellent. 

You may never get a thank you or pat on the back, but you can rest in the knowledge that you were your best, and that is worth millions.

Remember Today:  THE WINDOW WASHER!

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There is a story told in Patrick Lencioni’s book Silos, Politics, and Turf Wars that illustrates the power of a common purpose all can be passionate about.

The main character in the story, Jude, is a consultant charged with bringing unity to a divided workforce at a local hotel. The front desk staff is upset with the cleaning staff for not getting the rooms turned around quickly. The cleaning staff is upset at the front desk staff for not letting them know that rooms have been vacated in a timely manner. The restaurant staff is upset with the bell boys for rolling carts in front of restaurant windows, causing noise and an unpleasant view for restaurant patrons. The bell boys think the restaurant staff are overpaid and should get over it. Everyone is frustrated with everyone else. Everyone is self-seeking and hotel guests can feel the tension upon entering the front doors. Definitely not what you want when running a guest service business.

Jude is having trouble coming up with a solution to the division at the hotel when he experiences a life changing event at a local emergency room. Jude’s wife, Amy, is pregnant with twins and begins bleeding one night a few months before her due date. Jude calls an ambulance to rush his wife to treatment. Upon arrival, the EMT immediately begins assessing the situation. They call ahead and let the ER know what to expect. When they arrive at the ER, the security guard helps unload Amy and even holds some IV bags until an orderly can take over. Amy is wheeled into a room to await a doctor. The receptionist noticed that a tray containing examination tools had been knocked over during the process, so she rushes over to get them out of the way so they would not cause an accident. The two nurses treating Amy call out for someone to page Dr. Smith. A member of the janitorial staff who happens to be nearby quickly picks up the phone and calls for Dr. Smith. Dr. Smith arrives a few seconds later and is able to stabilize Amy and the twins with no permanent damage to either.

After the dust had settled and a few days had passed, Jude was able to reflect on his experience. The overwhelming conclusion was this: The sole focus of everyone involved with the event was to make Amy and the babies better. That was it! Job title didn’t matter, education level didn’t matter, and time on the job didn’t matter. What mattered was making the patients better. Everyone was willing to do whatever necessary that would achieve the one focus of making the patients well. A receptionist was doing the job of a janitor, a security guard was doing the job of an EMT, and a janitor was doing the job of a nurse. No one was acting selfishly, but performed whatever job that was required to achieve the common goal of making people better.

A common goal all can believe in and be passionate about changes the way people function in their jobs.

Jude had his solution for the hotel. If everyone at the hotel had the common purpose of ensuring that each guest had a memorable stay, selfishness would cease and unity would be created.

What is the purpose at your organization?

Are you willing to do whatever is necessary to achieve this common goal, even if it is “outside your job title?”

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