snow covered street

Going the Extra Mile

Rev. Dr. Kitty Boitnott, Ph.D., NBCT

Certified Life Strategies, Stress Management, & Holistic Wellness Coach

Career Transition & Job Search Coach

For today's video message, click here.

I am the Association President for Phase II of my townhome community. That means I am often copied on complaints that our Community Manager receives from residents when things don't go the way residents believe they should.

This morning, the complaint was from one of my neighbors who had sent a similar photo to the one you see above. She was shooting hers from a different angle, but the effect is the same. She was showing the Community Manager why she was unimpressed with the job that the snow shovel truck driver had done yesterday.

I wasn't surprised to receive a complaint. I was surprised that the complaint came from this part of the community, however, because based on what I saw yesterday on my walk through the neighborhood, this looked good!

As I reflected on the complaint and on my own observations, it dawned on me that this is a perfect example of the difference between doing a job and doing a job well. Think for a moment about a time when you were out to eat and you had a waiter or waitress who seemed to be going out of her way to make sure you had a stellar dining experience. Even though he was clearly waiting on more than just your table, she never made you feel like she was in a hurry and he didn't try to hurry you. Every stop by the table was relaxed, aimed at giving you superb service, and when you were ready to go, you not only gave the wait person a full 20% tip (or more) but you wanted the manager to know how much you enjoyed the experience. Later, you would tell friends about the fabulous experience you had, and you would recommend that they check out that restaurant and ask for ______ (fill in the blank).

We tend to put up with poor service so often that when we receive truly stellar service whether it is at the bank or your favorite restaurant, you take note.

Unfortunately, the guy who shoveled snow in my neighborhood yesterday was only intent upon doing the job. He didn't seem to give a fig about doing it well. And it showed.

That made me think about my own work. Do I give 100% to my clients or do I try to skate by on 95%? More importantly, do I give 110%, or, at least, do I give my clients the impression that I am giving stellar service regardless of what it is I may be doing for them...offering a class, providing a webinar, coaching or counseling in a one-on-one session? I should be committed to giving stellar service every single time because I am in the service industry. I offer a service. I hope I provide value. I know I am committed to my clients' success, which means I have to give my best every single time. And it doesn't work if I give one client 110% and another 90%. That isn't fair to the person getting 90% of my time, attention, and value.

Perhaps this message comes at a time when you are thinking about what you offer at work or in your business. Do you give 100% of yourself to your job, or do you just put in the time?

Dedicated to Excellence

What I know about the guy yesterday is that he was putting in time. He was doing what he was told to do by clearing a path through the neighborhood. Apparently he wasn't told to do a good job. Perhaps that was supposed to be understood. Clearly, he didn't understand if that was the case. Or maybe he just didn't care. It was Sunday after all. Maybe he was eager to get done so he could get home to watch the football playoff.

Whatever his reason for not doing a good job yesterday, today we have people who are rightfully wondering why they are paying extra for snow removal when this is the best they get.

I am on the Association Board, and I am wondering! Even as I write this, one of my neighbors is stuck on ice because she didn't come out yesterday to dig herself out to the street and she is now trying to drive over ice that is between her and the semi-cleared driveway.

We all have a choice when we go to work every day. We can choose to show up to do our best and give those with whom we come into contact stellar service, or we can simply go through the motions and just do the job. I know which type of worker I want to be. What about you?

Maybe the problem is that you are in the wrong job or a job that you hate. Maybe it is time to take a look at making a change. If that is the case, I invite you to download the new checklist I wrote recently that offers 10 things you should consider if you think you want to change jobs or your career. You may download it here. Please feel free to share if you know someone who would benefit from it.

Until next time.


Photos by Shutterstock 

Have you downloaded your free book, Stressed, Stretched, and Just Plain Overwhelmed yet? This book explains the negative health implications of not understanding and dealing with the stress in your life. It offers practical, affordable, common sense strategies for taking better care of yourself and it offers advice on creating work-life balance that eludes most of us too much of the time.

To access your FREE copy of the book, just click on the graphic below for the download. Please feel free to share as you see fit. As I said, I just want the information to get to the people who need it.


  Facebook Like IconFacebook IconTwitter IconLinkedIn IconYouTube IconPinterest icon


Vanessa Jackson
Phoenix Rising Coaching
1541 Flaming Oak
New Braunfels Texas 78132
United States of America