After having a really good experience in the supermarket a couple of months back, I noted the names of the two staff I had got chatting as they had been really helpful and positive and so I notified customer services. They seemed surprised that I had taken the time to say thank you and asked if I would fill in a compliment form. While I did I was told it doesn’t happen that often and the two members of staff would now be invited to a special lunch for staff who go the extra mile for their customer. It’s awesome that the company run this scheme to give team members incentives like this, but it was quite sad how infrequently the customers give credit where it’s due. The customer experience works both ways too, I am usually most impressed by service when I have been a good customer and joked with someone or asked lots of questions. People become more helpful and happy to give advice and I walk away glad to have had the exchange, but I haven’t always been good enough at giving proper compliments about this sort of thing.
It felt good knowing those two helpful people, who put effort into doing their job well, now get much deserved praise and are reminded that every now and again being positive pays off. It cost me nothing but 2 minutes of my time and I genuinely had been chuffed with the service.
I work in a job where credit or thanks from customers is very rare, and that’s ok, that’s the nature of my job and luckily my colleagues and management let each other know when we are doing something right and that’s just about enough. But some people work in jobs where they don’t get the credit they deserve from anyone or the chance to chat and be praised on their awesomeness. Today and yesterday has been about putting that right!
It’s not just service providers though, I’ve realised that lately I’m having less meaningful interaction with strangers in general than I used to and I know it’s down to my phone. It’s often joked about how, in London on the tube etc. people ignore each other and walk around with their heads down, but it seems to be happening everywhere now. I have found myself getting more and more guilty of this. Don’t get me wrong, I love technology, I think Facebook is an amazing tool and I love having a question in my head and being able to find informative articles to provide me with an answer in seconds. There’s no doubt our smart phones are helping us progress at connecting to each other and to the information we need. I sometimes even congratulate myself about my time management skills when, between leaving the car and getting to work, I have checked my Facebook, WhatsApp and done all my personal emails and started on some work ones; but in that same time I have also blankly passed York Minster, walked over the river and avoided eye contact and pleasantries with hundreds of people. I’ve missed out.
Here’s a link with an interesting insight to this modern issue – https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/rewired-the-psychology-technology/201507/the-real-reason-you-cant-stop-checking-your-phone
Do those extra few seconds sorting things out on my journey to work actually make a huge difference to my day or would they be better spent admiring and connecting to the people and world around me before I get into the office? I know this week has been about connecting with people using this very same technology but I know I need to use it responsibly for my own wellbeing too. From now on, I am going to try and be a bit more mindful of the world around me and remember its ok to talk to strangers. Ok, not a great piece of advice for kids, but definitely one for the grown-ups! Check out this funny video about kids talking to strangers, via adults:
So after my experiences in Asda and my own workplace and having realised my connection to technology could be limiting my connection to the world, I’ve been spending some time complimenting people for the good that I see in them; from workers to passers by, buskers to friends and even a shop for their punny name and great decor! Everyone I see doing something right, or being good to me or other people has got either a supersized high 5 and / or one of my cards and some ‘Good work!’ stickers! Thanks to Simon G for the unexpected help yesterday and my girlfriend Anna for taking some cards into work for her hard working colleagues. I went into work today and took some cakes in for my tirelessly brilliant colleagues, as they most definitely deserve a treat!
Now I am fully aware that this is all a tad cheesy, but everyone so far has seemed happy to be complimented on their good work and perhaps once they read their card will be inspired to give away a sticker or pass on some kind words to someone else for their efforts.
This is a nice link which shows people’s reaction to being told they are beautiful. It’s an amazing reminder of the power of how much people can value an opinion, even from a stranger and it can make them feel amazing.
This isn’t just about this week either, this is a pledge to be better at reminding those who deserve it ‘you are doing great’! Whether the effect lasts for 2 minutes, 2 hours or 2 days, I’m not sure it matters. I know I have made some people feel better today and that knowledge is genuinely making me feel awesome too. We all have the power to make someone’s day. Care to join me..?