Every Day You Get a Another Chance to Make a First Impression….

I drove to Washington, NC last week to speak at leadership conference. If you have never been, it is a beautiful little town on the Pamlico Sound in the heart of North Carolina’s Inner Banks.


As I got to town I needed to get some gas and stopped at the first station I came to. The young man behind the glass was conversational and made me feel as though he appreciated my business.  I mentioned the drive in and he asked me about my trip, welcomed me to town and wished me luck the next day.

I arrived at my hotel and the woman who checked me in was the same way. I was on the second floor, they had no elevator, and she offered to watch some of my things while I carried some of them up the stairs.  I managed all at once, but made a mental note that it was a nice gesture.

I was beginning to like this Little Washington town after just two contacts.

The next day, I met many great folks in Washington, who made me feel welcome. When I returned home that night, I told my wife that we needed to make a weekend trip there soon. I can recommend that you do the same.

We are all ambassadors

We are ambassadors for our organization, our peers our neighborhood, our city and our state. Every interaction with people builds the reputation of your community.  That is why providing excellent customer service is so important.

The convenience store clerk, the cashier at a department store, and the receptionist at the doctor’s office are not just taking care of customers for their employer.  They are taking care of customers for their whole community.

What if an executive from a large employer came to your town late one night and the first person they meet makes a lasting impression as the check into their hotel, then at breakfast the next morning the waitress does the same. Later in the day, the executive has to call the city for some information and the person who answers the phone has an outstanding helpful attitude? Person after person that he meets in your city makes a positive first impression.

He goes to another location in another city later that week and receives not poor service, but just average or apathetic service. He returns to his office the next week and makes a recommendation for locating an expansion that will bring hundreds of new jobs to one of those cities. All other things being close to equal, where do you think he is going to make that investment?

That’s right, in the city where he was made to feel welcome and received great service.

A few years later and the hotel night clerk’s brother gets a new job making more money at this new expansion, the waitress gets a job there too and now has benefits and will be able to pay for daughter’s education, the person with no job gets her job and on and on and on……All because people provided outstanding service and treated someone well.

We live in a service-driven economy. People often make money by doing things for other people. The better we do that as an individual, as a company and as a community the better our economy will be.

No matter what your job is how you treat the people you lead, the people you meet and the people who work for you make all the difference in the world.  Give them your very best.


Contact me to find out more about how I can work with you and your team to develop a culture of excellent service.

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