We’ve all heard the idea of being customer-centric, but how you utilizing your leadership to best serve your customers.
The very thirsty crow came upon a pitcher of water. But, the water was deep and the neck of the pitcher narrow. Aesop’s Fables tells us the rest of the riddle. The crow picked up small pebbles and dropped them one by one in the pitcher causing the water to rise high enough for a drink.
I needed a prescription refilled for an eye ointment, and my usual pharmacy was unable to get it for a week. So, I called the pharmacy attached to the local grocery store. The “I’m having a horrible day” cashier-receptionist answered my phone call to fill the prescription. When I arrived at the pharmacy, she stood guard over the cash register with a scowl telegraphing the same attitude I had heard on the phone. Behind her were the pharmacy manager and two pharmacy assistants.
“Are you having a great day?” I asked cheerfully in a rather loud voice. “Not particularly,” she said.
“Well,” I announced, putting a pebble in the water pitcher so to speak, “I am here to help your day get a lot better.” She was unmoved. One of the pharmacy assistants nervously smiled at my way-too-obvious attempt to get her “happy water” to rise in the pitcher.
“How much would this ointment cost without insurance?” I asked her in my very best happy-go-lucky cheerleader voice. I had Googled the answer in advance. “Three hundred and fifty dollars,” she answered. “Gee whiz,” I teased. “How much would it cost just to get new eyes?” The other pharmacy assistant laughed to herself without looking up. But the cashier was not joining in the fun. “I know you are going to fix me right up!” I added, still trying to alter the mood!
My last attempt at a bit of happy talk: “Is your day getting a little bit better?” I asked. “Not really,” she said, flatly.
The expressionless pharmacy manager standing six feet from her finally looked up from his work. His countenance clearly conveyed his condemnation. He was not amused at my attempts to elevate the attitude of his front-line ambassador. This pitcher of customer delight remained out of my reach as I vowed to go back to my old pharmacy where I didn’t have to work so hard to get a fraction of positive service.