When you come into contact with someone who is committed to service, you leave their presence feeling lighter. You carry a sense of fulfillment because they took time to focus on your needs and prioritize not only those needs but your feelings as well. When your feelings have been acknowledged it is easy to feel joyful, and isn’t that what we all want?
Sitting in a drive thru behind a ton of vehicles you’re dealing with a limited amount of time before your next meeting, and trying to wait patiently. It’s a challenge to say the least. You reach the menu and are immediately greeted with “”how may I serve you today?” A smirk finds its way across your face.
You slowly inch forward to pick up your order and have somehow found a sense of peace through that brief interaction. Finally reaching the drive thru window you are greeted with your bag of food as you utter a thank you to which she responds “it’s my pleasure.”
Chick-Fil-A has always stood out in the world of service, and if you ask anyone who has eaten there they will tell you why. Though they serve thousands of people a day you feel as though you are their only customer. Your business is important to them but even more than your business, you as a person are. From their founding they have been committed to hiring people that align with their mission of glorifying God and being a faithful steward to all they’re entrusted with.
They do not tout their servant commitment, they just live it every day through their service to their teams and customers. It has served them well as their staff retention rate has hovered around an unheard of rate of 95-97% for over 50 years. People desire to be loyal, most deeply want to serve through an organization that they love but if they do not feel valued they will choose to leave. Organizational leaders can affect this turnover, like Chick-Fil-A has, through leading by service.
Service is not only about how well you serve your customers but it is how well you serve your people that serve your customers. Being conscious of how you interact with people every day makes them feel valued. When your people feel valued, they are more likely to serve your customers to the highest level.
Becoming conscious of how you treat the people around you will help you become more committed to service. Show a genuine interest in them and engage in respectful conversations This is even more imperative when you disagree with each other because these are learning opportunities if you choose to approach them respectfully. Ask yourself how you can better help them feel valued through your words and actions. If you are distracted when you should be engaged in conversation, try to eliminate those distractions. Place your phone in a drawer, close your laptop, turn the radio down or off and make eye contact. These simple changes allow them to feel valued and you to exercise your skills surrounding service.