Service: “Wow, sometimes you make a crazy request, you get an awesome answer”

“At this very moment, I knew why Gandhi ever lived because with people like Jackie, mankind is worth saving after all…. Wow, sometimes you make a crazy request, you get an awesome answer.”  A delighted customer

There is a lot written about service and all kinds of tips, tricks and recipes are put forward for people/organisations which are looking for the latest silver bullet for improving customer service and/or the customer experience.  Usually the bullet consists of some kind of training for people, playing around with the KPIs,  rewarding the front line people differently, redesigning processes and making changes in technology. When I read this stuff I ask myself, why is it that so many of us are still trapped in the web spun by Frederick Taylor and Scientific Management?

You may have noticed that I don’t put forward recipes.  Why?  They just don’t work in the real world.  The same recipes have been pushed, in many different guises, for such a long time. And what is the state of customer service as experienced by customers?

I have a very different take on the service and why it is that service is so poor.  In this post I wrote “..what we see, how we see it, what we focus on, what we do and the results that show up cannot be ‘greater than’ the concept we live/act from.  I say that service sucks because our concept of service sucks. Put differently given the existing concept of service that holds us prisoner it is inevitable that service sucks.” I went to write:

Service is a gift that one human being bestows on a fellow human being.  The fundamental basis and the desired outcome of Service is human dignity itself: honouring our shared humanity – the best of our shared humanity as in when we move-touch-inspire and elevate one another. The kind of humanity that can move us to tears of joy.”

Today, I find myself in a position to illustrate what I am pointing at here by inviting you to watch two short videos where  one customer encounter a human being that clearly lives that which I am pointing at in my definition.  She is the kind of human being that my friend Richard Shapiro calls a Welcomer in his book The Welcomers Edge.  Who is this human being?  Her name is Jackie, she works in a Krispy Kreme store in Austin, Texas.  This is what the customer has to say regarding his encounter with Jackie:   “At this very moment, I knew why Gandhi ever lived because with people like Jackie, mankind is worth saving after all…. Wow, sometimes you make a crazy request, you get an awesome answer.”

Here are the two videos, the first is the video of the first encounter between the customer and Jackie where he makes a crazy request.  The second is a follow-up interview with Jackie where she shares how she relates to herself, her colleagues, her customers. Both of them are more instructive than a ton of books, a ton of theory.  Enjoy and learn!