Found a blog worth keeping at HBR.org. I usually keep an eye on them for articles and podcasts about business leadership. Fred Reichold has a great blog up there now for them. I quote part of it below. You can find all of it here.
Barbara Talbott, the retired head of marketing for the Four Seasons, tells the story of acts of intelligent kindness: a pot of tea delivered gratis to the room of a guest with a bad cold, a vaporizer for a mother with a croupy child, and so on.
Her point is that if you hire good employees, they will seek out opportunities to be kind. They know that when the line at the front desk is five deep, then they must be intelligent and move the line expeditiously, but if there is no crowd, then that is the time to add a little flare and conversation.
All this sheds light on the ongoing conversation about employee happiness. Most people are happiest when they get a chance to do something that others truly value — when they can act according to their best instincts. More and more companies are making sure that they support those instincts with the right team structures, leaders, tools, and training. And they put in place systems that give employees immediate feedback about how they have enriched a customer’s life — or why they fell short and how to fix it.
For an employee, that support is likely to mean a chance to make a real difference in the life of a customer. How fitting that the employee’s company gains from this as well.
This is the double win I always seek and many of you do as well. The employee wins and the company wins at the same time. Your employees want to do good work. Let them be on you team and be on their team and not only will they smile, but so will your customers.