We all face moments of truth. What do yours reveal about you?
This past Friday evening–at the end of what was a fantastic week–I decided to drop in on a local Chinese food restaurant for takeout before heading home to my family.
It was a regular drop in on a business I hadn’t been to in probably four months. I placed a “robust” order to feed our family of 6, and then walked outside the restaurant to talk on the phone while my order was prepared.
When I walked back in, one earphone in my ear and the other dangling so that I could pick up my two sackfuls of Chinese goodness, the cook and proprietor of the restaurant pointed to the sacks and said “I made you a Mongolian Beef to make up for the one I missed last time.”
I was astounded.
“Last time,” as I noted above, had to have been four months ago. I vaguely remembered, only after the cook pointed it out, that I had indeed arrived home one Mongolian Beef short of my full order on that trip. I remember calling briefly and letting the shop know (without much fanfare…literally just “hey, wanted you to know we were short on this one…no big deal.”).
And the cook remembered better than me.
He, no doubt, had a moment of truth where his customer walked in, didn’t say a word about a past service miss, placed a big order, and then waited. The moment of truth was that moment when he faced the choice of either to address a prior miss that hadn’t been remembered by the customer, or to just go with the flow and ignore it–banking on the customer’s ignorance.
On moments of truth
There’s a reality in customer service–all parts of business and life, really. It’s that we all face moments of truth. Moments of truth are moments that force us to reveal–at the very least to ourselves–who we really are.
It may be that moment when you ought to deliver hard feedback to a client but decide not to because it’s too, well, hard.
It may be that moment when you return that overpayment to your customer like it’s a hot potato because you are not about keeping your customers’ money.
And, yes, it may be that moment when you remember a customer issue from four months ago and go the extra mile to mitigate it when the chance, finally, arises again.
We all have moments of truth in our lives. Moments of truth are moments of truth because we quite often have discretion about which way we go.
We can choose.
We can hide from the truth and reveal that we are, in fact, cowardly (like in my feedback example above). Or, we can face the music and see where it takes us.
The question we all should consider is this: When faced with my moment of truth, what will it reveal about me?
We should all hope for the revelation of strength of character in such moments.
What do you think?