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Some people don’t like where they work… at all. They might even despise who they report to. And since their work environment is so”toxic”, they choose to withhold their very best quality of work. “THIS PLACE does not deserve the best I have to offer. I will come to work, just do what’s expected of me, collect my paycheck, and go home.” Do you know anybody like this?

Bare Minimum

The issue with that line of thinking is that if you repeatedly choose to give the bare minimum, then eventually you’ll be comfortable giving the bare minimum. Yes, you’d have unknowingly shaped not only a habit, but a bad habit. At some point, you might not even know what excellent work looks like… and begin to think that you’re not capable of being outstanding. To be excellent is what you’re called to be, and to be exceptional is what you are called to.

Hot Tea

Since it was a limited service hotel, ordering room service wasn’t an option. The worker told me,”Our restaurant has already closed, so tea will be available in the morning for breakfast”. Click.

Now, I obviously knew that tea and hot water had to be available somewhere on the property, but I chose to wait and speak to the supervisor in the morning. When I spoke with the manager the following morning, he was angry about what happened and even showed me that the employee mini-break area that was just a couple feet behind the front desk. The break area had a fridge, and the refrigerator was stacked with… wait for it… tea! All kinds of tea.

Here are a few reasons why the front desk agent may have reacted the way he did:

A) He legitimately did not know there was tea available (yeah right).

B) He’s only comfortable working within the strict parameters of his job.

C) He does not like his job and/or where he works and has chosen to not perform one more ounce than he absolutely has to.

As difficult as it could be, you must push through any disdain that you might have and honor your function, honor that you are serving and honor yourself. Sooner or later, each individual must make a decision about how exceptional he/she wants to be, regardless of the work environment. Eventually, it can be very fatiguing to constantly strive for excellence in a work environment which you can not stand to be in.

If that’s the case, see if you can address your discontentment with the proper people, or find someplace else to do the job. Search for a company that has values that mirror your own.Ultimately, it’s important to work for a company that you believe in.

Fixing Your Service

Some people have a habit of adjusting their support based on how important they think a particular customer is. One reason that’s so dangerous is because you really never know that you are serving or what their situation may be. We have no right to treat anyone as though they are”just a client”. That’s simply wrong, and even immoral. Every customer has a story and it is our duty to honor that client whatever the story could be.

Never again be lulled into the fallacy that it is OK to provide the bare minimum. Savagely fight that fallacy with everything you’ve got. Be exceptional despite the work environment. While that certainly can happen, try to find a team, manager and company that enable you to work one of many islands of excellence within an ocean happy to have you there.

In the end, service has a goal, and a noble goal at that. We serve because functioning is a good thing, and great things are worthy to be exalted. There is significance to your role. There is purpose to your role. If you truly understand what that means, then you have the capacity to impact lives, one client at a time.

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