Remarkable Peformance: Go for the Encore!
There is nothing better than a performance that soars—one that really over-delivers and delights.
I’ve seen the latter at the bagel shop near my home. There is a new manager at the shop who makes standing in line to hand over money a pure pleasure. When I was there recently, he was working the cash register. An older gentleman in line ahead of me asked for the senior citizen discount the shop offers. Without missing a beat that would have caused the line to slow down, the manager said, “What? You’re trying to fool me, aren’t you? You can’t be a day over 30!”—all the while ringing up the man’s purchase less the discount.
When it was my turn to pay, he said, “Now, here’s a brother that’s hungry! He’s eating his bagel before he’s even paid for it!” I was guilty as charged—and smiling as I paid. As I walked away I heard the banter continue with the next person in line.
You and I have been in situations where such a performance fell flat. It was irritating, wasn’t funny, slowed down the transaction—was a turn-off instead of a turn-on. But that day, in that bagel shop, it was a remarkable performance. This individual wasn’t promoting himself—he was promoting his customers. He wasn’t “showing-off”— he was showing up to create an encore performance. He was warm, engaging, and just humorous enough to add value to what is often a bland transaction.
To Be Remarkable Be the Performance
I never got the idea that the bagel shop manager was performing. Rather, I felt like he was just being himself. I got the feeling that what he was doing behind the cash register was what he did on his own time: making people feel good about his role in their lives.
What that shop manager was doing is the theme of this chapter: Build your reputation on reality and results, not hype and hyperbole.
The truth is, there are no innately boring jobs in this world, no boring careers or vocations, and no boring interchanges between people. When we find what we consider to be a boring or flat experience or exchange in life, it’s because there is a boring person involved. The ability to change something from bland to grand is a trait that remarkable performers share.
Is the encore always as good as the original? Sometimes yes, sometimes no. (There are lots of variables involved, some of which are out of your control.) The point is, you wanted there to be an encore. You were so captured by your initial experience that you wanted more.
And that’s how you want your employer, customer, colleague, or spouse to respond to you—by calling you back for more of the service, care, and value you deliver.
Remember: Your goal in life shouldn’t be your happiness or success alone, but the happiness and success of others as well. We all tend to repeat the experiences in life that have a positive impact on our well-being. And when you have that kind of impact on others, they’ll come back for more.
Mark Sanborn is a bestselling author, acclaimed speaker and advisor to top leaders.
As Mark says, “One of the things that differentiates my work is that it stems from experience as a business owner, association leader and board member. And I’m still studying, researching and applying what I learn about leadership today, both with my clients and in the organizations in which I’m privileged to have a leadership role.”
Mark is a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame and is much in demand as a customer service speaker for his keynote presentations which include The Fred Factor, The 10 Commandments of Customer Service and Service Leadership.
His other books include:
Up, Down or Sideways: How to Succeed When Times are Good, Bad or In Between
You Don’t Need a Title to be a Leader: How Anyone, Anywhere Can Make a Positive Difference
The Encore Effect: How to Achieve Remarkable Performance in Anything You Do
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