只有跑完才能贏

By Jim Mathis

許多年前有一次我的家需要換地毯。妻子與我雇用了一家別人大力推薦的公司,而且用了很高的價錢付了新地毯和工資。當工人鋪好地毯後,我的妻子幾乎要哭了,因為房間看起來實在很糟。

我向她保證我可以解決這問題,我迅速地揀起剩餘的地毯碎片,用吸塵器把新地毯吸一遍,還重新做了護壁板。我的工具箱甚至還多了一些他們留下的鋪地毯工具。當傢俱搬回來後,房間看起來就漂亮了。

那個鋪設工人就只是沒有把工作做完。不用說,我們再也不會找他,也不會推薦他給任何人。

最近我在一家汽車輪胎店有一次很不好的經驗。我的輪胎沒用多久就磨損了,因為它們沒有正確的平衡。經過一些討論後,店主同意以很大的折扣賣我一組新的輪胎。

他們本來有機會贏回我這個顧客,但當我去拿我的車時,我發現鋁合金輪圈磨損且沾有油污。我花了30分鐘清理並磨光,但還是有磨損的痕跡。我是有了新輪胎,但那工作讓我完全不滿意。

用競爭的運動作比方,這兩家公司本來可以贏得比賽,但都沒有抵達終點線,所以失敗了。他們不在乎我、我的妻子,我房子的外觀,我車子的狀況。用棒球的術語,他們可以打出全壘打,但卻沒有踏上三壘。

我是一個攝影師,我給我顧客的承諾之一是保證我會盡全力使他們不僅滿意,而且也喜歡攝影的結果。不論你在哪一種行業,或你提供什麼產品或服務,這也應該是你的目標。

這個要提供最佳服務的決心是很實際的。在許多情況中,我們未來的生意都要靠顧客願意一再地使用我們。而且對任何公司而言,最好的廣告就是滿意的顧客。同時,不滿意的顧問可能為我們帶來災難。事實上,許多時候一個不高興的顧客可能會告訴別人他們的經驗。

但還有一個更好的理由讓我們努力達到卓越,用我們最好的能力去工作。在聖經新約中說:「無論做甚麼,或說話或行事,都要奉主耶穌的名,藉著他感謝父 神…無論做甚麼,都要從心裏做,像是給主做的,不是給人做的」(歌羅西書3章17、23節)。

我們每一個人都被賜予獨特的才幹、天份和經驗,使我們去做我們的工作。表現出對這賜予的感謝方式之一是盡全力將這些使用出來。

吉姆.馬提斯在堪薩斯州陸路公園市經營一家照相館。他的專長是商業和影劇界人像。他也經營一所攝影學校。他還寫了一本書「一般民眾的高度攝影表現」,那是一本有關數位攝影的書。他曾是一家咖啡店的經理,也曾是CBMC在堪薩斯州堪薩斯市和密蘇里州堪薩斯市的執行主任。

省思 / 討論題目
你曾否在購買某項產品或服務時有很不好的經驗?你當時有何感覺?你又如何回應? 你認為有些人和公司為何似乎對自己提供了低於水準的工作和服務感到滿足? 你是否曾察覺自己在工作上或在服務一位客戶時,沒有盡力做到最好?若是,你後來如何處理? 本文作者提出聖經的訓誡說,無論我們做什麼,我們都應該「要從心裏做,像是給主做的」而且要「奉主耶穌的名」做。對此你有何看法?若你想看聖經有關此議題的其他經文,請翻閱以下經節:箴言11章1節、16章11節、12章24節、14章23節、18章9節、22章29節、27章18節;傳道書3章9-12節;歌羅西書3章24-25節

YOU WIN RACES ONLY WHEN YOU FINISH
By Jim Mathis

Several few years ago we needed to have some carpet replaced in our home. My wife and I hired a company that came highly recommended, and we paid a premium price for the new carpet and the work. When the installers were done, my wife almost cried because the room looked so bad.

I assured her we could fix the problem, and quickly gathered the carpet scraps, ran the vacuum over the new floor covering, and redid the baseboards. I even added to my tool collection some carpet tools they had left behind. After the furniture was moved back, the room looked beautiful.

The installer simply had not cared enough to finish the job. Needless to say, we never called him again and would not have given a favorable recommendation to anyone if asked.

Recently I had a bad experience with an automotive tire shop. Among other things, the tires on my car wore out prematurely because they had not been balanced correctly. After some discussion, the shop owners agreed to give me a new set of tires at a huge discount.

They had an opportunity to win me back as a customer, but when I picked up my car, I found the alloy wheels were scuffed and covered with grease. I spent about thirty minutes cleaning and polishing the wheels, but they are still scuffed. Yes, I had new tires, but the work was totally unsatisfactory.

To use an analogy from competitive sports, both companies could have won the race but failed to even reach the finish line. They did not care about me, my wife, the appearance of our home or the condition of my car. In baseball terminology, they could have hit a home run, but failed to pass third base.

I am a photographer, and one of my commitments is to offer my customers the assurance that I will be swinging for the fences and will not stop until they are not only satisfied, but also delighted with their results. Regardless of what kind of business you are in or what types of products or services you provide, this should be your goal as well.

This determination to provide the best service possible makes practical sense. In many cases the future of our businesses depend on having customers that use us again and again. Also, the best advertisement for any company is a satisfied customer. At the same time, dissatisfied customers can be disastrous. And the fact is, an unhappy customer is many times more likely to tell others about the experience.

But there is an even better reason for striving for excellence, for doing work to the best of our ability. In the Bible”s New Testament, it says, “whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him…. Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men” (Colossians 3:17,23).

Each of us has received unique abilities, talents and experience that enable us to do the work that we do. One way of showing appreciation for what we have received is to use these to the best of our abilities.

Jim Mathis is the owner of a photography studio in Overland Park, Kansas, specializing in executive, commercial and theatrical portraits, and operates a school of photography. Jim is the author of High Performance Cameras for Ordinary People, a book on digital photography. He formerly was a coffee shop manager, and executive director of CBMC in Kansas City, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri.

Reflection/Discussion Questions
Have you ever had a bad experience in working with a business, whether a product you received or services that were provided? What were your feelings about that – and how did you respond? Why do you think some individuals and some businesses seem to be content with providing substandard work and services? Have you ever realized that you failed to do your best work on a project or assignment, whether at your workplace or in serving a customer or client? If so, what – if anything – did you do about it? Mr. Mathis points to the admonition from the Bible, which says that whatever we do, we should do our work “with all our heart, as working for the Lord” and “in the name of Jesus.” What are your thoughts about that?If you would like to look at or discuss other portions of the Bible that relate to this topic, consider the following brief sampling of passages: Proverbs 11:1, 16:11, 12:24, 14:23, 18:9, 22:29, 27:18; Ecclesiastes 3:9-12; Colossians 3:24-25

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