It’s the bleak mid-winter here in the middle west U.S. where I live. It’s cold and gray and drab and dreary. And people, as a general rule, are tired of it. We’re a little bit grouchier and grumpier than usual. And February stretches long and dark before us, too. Thank goodness there are only twenty-eight days of that nonsense.
That’s why when I read a post on my friend Boyd’s Facebook wall last week, it stopped me in my tracks. I asked him for permission to share. And Boyd being Boyd, in all of his awesomeness, said he was happy to contribute.
Here’s what happened:
Boyd and his wife took their high school-age son and infant daughter out for pizza last night to a locally owned pizzeria. Boyd said, “The service was a little slow, but I’ve had slower. So we sat and joked around and had fun while we waited.”
See, I told you Boyd was awesome. But here’s what happened next:
“When it came time to pay,” Boyd said, “ the manager had written on our ticket.”
The manager wrote: “I like happy, smiling customers more than money. Enjoy your dinner.”
And she comped their meal.
The manager saw behavior she liked in her customers and rewarded that behavior.
As managers and owners and bosses, we get so caught up in correcting and punishing bad behavior, that we forget to notice and reward the exact attitudes and behaviors that we want in our businesses and in our homes and in our lives. These types of rewards and incentives can skyrocket a business into the type of Shareworthy Service that people can’t stop talking about.
Because you know what else happened? Boyd recommended to his entire Facebook universe that they head over to this particular pizza place, and he even made a recommendation:“If you go, try the Chicken Bacon Ranch thin crust. It’s awesome!”
That’s the kind of free advertising that’s worth a lot more than the cost of one family’s meal. It’s worth a lifetime of customer loyalty. If you are worried about being take advantage of if you employ this technique, let me assure you, it will happen. For this you’ll need a knucklehead budget. But it’s still worth it.
This week, reward the happy people. Reward the smiling people. Reward the cooperators and the prompt ones and the hard workers.
And next time you take your family out to dinner, remember to have a good time. You never know what might happen next!