So often, we moan about circumstances and how they impact us. It feels as though we have no control over those circumstances, and are therefore a prisoner of them.
The reality, though, is that while we can’t change circumstances, we can certainly change how we react to them – or even how we behave within certain situations. Take the story of Wally the Cab Driver, for instance. The story appears in The Simple Truths of Service by Ken Blanchard and Barbara Glanz, and tells of how Wally went from being an ordinary American cabby to someone whose services are so in demand that his clients phone him to schedule rides in advance. Sometimes, he isn’t able to help and, in these cases, he refers them to a friend who pays him a commission.
Wally was able to transform from a taxi driver into a preferred service provider because he upped his service: every customer is greeted with an offer of decaf or regular coffee (he has a flask of both in his car), asked which radio station they would like to listen to, and presented with a copy of Wally’s mission statement. It’s an unusual approach for a taxi driver – but one he was moved to adopt after he listened to a radio interview featuring a personal growth guru, who urged listeners to spend their energy on finding a way to differentiate themselves from their competitors rather than using it to complain. In the guru’s words, it is better to be an eagle, soaring, than a duck, quacking.
We think of all our MIWA members as eagles – although we know that, given the many challenges we currently face, it is easy to give in to the temptation to be a quacking duck. When that urge next takes you, think of Wally: consider what small action you can take today that will set you up for even greater success. What choice will you make?