In the Ocean of Life, a Little Service Means a Lot
What have you done today to put a smile on someone else face? Have you given a little thought, put in a little effort, in an attempt to uplift someone else? Or are you too busy with your day-to-day affairs, too absorbed with what you need to do, too focused on yourself that you fail to think about taking care of other people?
Such is the life of so many. We run on autopilot, doing the same-old, same-old. Your enthusiasm towards work, family, or life in general, gradually fades away. It doesn’t have to be that way.
Let me share with you some things ordinary people have done for me recently that put a smile on my face, and on theirs too!
I was with my colleague in India, New Delhi, conducting a 5-day Train-the-Trainer workshop on “Achieving Superior Service”. On our last day, just before we set off for the airport, we were having our lunch. The waiters knew that we were on our way home and just before we asked for the bill, the waiter came to our table with a dessert we did not order. And on the plate was written “Happy Journey”.
A few other waiters also came to bid us farewell. We were pleasantly surprised by this nice gesture. They gave us a memorable last impression and a lasting one too! And certainly, that put a smile on our faces.
My family visits West Coast Park McCafe regularly on the weekends. The place is always busy, with a long line of customers waiting to be served. But the baristas take pride by making the effort to create an interesting design on dessert plates. I’m always curious to see what I’ll get. They never fail to surprise me, they put a smile on my face, and their creativity keeps me coming back.
Happy Home Coming!
At my workplace, we also do little things to uplift each other. Here you can see the notice board in our office. But it is not just a notice board to document policies, updates, or travel movements of our staff. Very often this notice board turns into a welcome note, a birthday note, or a “We missed you!” note from colleagues.
In Uplifting Service, we travel around the world to share the vision of uplifting service. One time, when Ron, Jen, and I had been away for a while, we returned to see this happy note welcoming us back. It’s a small thing, but we really appreciated it. It put a smile on our faces right away.
At UP, we enjoy team “Dress UP Days” every month. We have “Dress UP Days” for every occasion: Christmas, Chinese New Year Day, Easter, Hari Raya, Deepavali, St. Patrick’s day, National Days, Independence Days, Valentine’s Day, Sports Final Days, Birthdays, Anniversaries, even Halloween. Sometimes we just make up a theme to inject more fun into our day-to-day work together.
This gives us an opportunity to creatively express ourselves with different themes each time. When we come into the office with interesting outfits, we laugh and have so much fun! Smile!
Service is about uplifting other people, and in the process uplifting yourself.
It requires some thought and effort, sometimes creativity, too. It’s definitely intentional.
Your thoughtful gestures can make someone’s day. Your simple kind words can uplift another person’s spirit. Your little creative act can make them feel so special. These don’t cost much, but they go a long way.
Like a drop in the vast ocean, each of us causes a ripple effect as we move throughout our lives. The effects of whatever we do – however insignificant it may seem – can spread out far beyond us.
Do not underestimate the impact you have on others. Even with the simplest action, you may have a powerful impact on someone else. We need to be conscious of our place in the ocean, our place in the world, our place in the organization, our place at home, our place in the community – and our power to be in those places for good.
So what ‘drop’ of service will you put in your ocean today?
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