30 May 2017
May 30, 2017

LaaS – Leadership as a Service

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Has anyone noticed the decline in good service in the United States, and more importantly how Americans have become more and more accepting of bad service as normal.  Sometimes I wonder if it’s that my expectations are too high or maybe I have a sign on my forehead that says, “please give me crappy service, I won’t mind”.

In the last two weeks alone, I can count 5 exceptionally poor customer service experiences, including restaurants, hotels, and customer service call centers (oxymoron).

serv·ice
NOUN
the action of helping or doing work for someone:
synonyms: favor · kindness · good turn · helping hand · assistance · help · aid 

So, when you are actually paying for a service, shouldn’t the expectation of the service level be even higher?

My most common experience in a restaurant these days, is mediocre to poor.  Yet, the tip expectation in the US from servers today is 20% as standard – good or bad experience.  So many of us simply add 20% with no consideration for what kind of service was received.

It seems as though we have become nonchalant about receiving poor service.  Australia is a total contrast to the US when it comes to service. I spent a month there this past November and there is no tipping.  Servers make a good wage and service was exceptional everywhere I went.  They get paid the same no matter what service level they offer customers, yet they make it their responsibility to provide exceptional service.  They see it as their job to delight customers!

To me, service is a way of life.  When we give service to others happily and freely, we are leaders of humanity.  It is not hard to hold the elevator door for someone else, even though we may be running late.  Simple gestures go a long way, like making another pot of coffee in the break room when you poor the last cup.

I believe there is a correlation between humanitarianism and good service.  I don’t think this is about money, I think it’s about attitude, being present and truly available to others, with or without a tip.

We are at our best when we “live to serve others”.  It is how we are built as human beings, it’s in our DNA to take care of one another.  We are meant to collaborate as a community to benefit the whole.  We all rise when we help each other out.

Actually, an act of service is a demonstration of leadership.

The organizations that understands LaaS, will be the ones thriving as a result.  When the goal is to offer an exceptional customer experience, the financial success will follow.  A great leader or the makings of a great leader will always put employees and customers first, not solely the numbers and the bottom line.

Want to learn more about the leaders that are winning at this game?
Check out these two great videos of leaders that lead in the most unconventional and groundbreaking new ways!

Tony Hsieh, Founder and CEO of Zappos.com and why his focus on employees and customer satisfaction brought him success. “Delivering Happiness”

Bob Chapman, CEO of Barry
“Truly Human Leadership”

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