But They’ve Got…Personality

As he wrote yesterday, The Curmudgeon attended a Phillies game this week.  Parking in the stadium area – for readers who aren’t Philadelphians, there are three stadiums within a few hundred feet of one another in Philadelphia, none of which The Curmudgeon will name because he’s not in the business of giving commercial plugs to rapacious banks and financial institutions – is always confusing:  you’re never quite sure where to go, finding your car after the game is often an adventure, and figuring out how to get out of the parking lot and onto the highway of your choice for the drive home is practically a death sport.

Only not $5. $18.

When he finally left his parked car and tried to place it in the context of an enormous sea of auto-covered asphalt so he could find it after the game, The Curmudgeon started a five-minute walk toward the stadium, with a parking attendant cheerfully stopping traffic to enable The Curmudgeon to cross the street (so he could, like the chicken, get to the other side).  The attendant walked with him, and at that point The Curmudgeon realized that all of the parking people he encountered who had ushered him from the main street through which he had entered the stadium complex to his eventual parking spot seemed unusually upbeat and he decided he wanted to know why (The Curmudgeon being, as you know, pretty curmudgeonly and expecting curmudgeonliness of others as their default disposition).

“So tell me something,” The Curmudgeon said to the parking attendant.  “You guys are all very upbeat and positive. That’s not very Philadelphia. What’s the deal?”

He looked at The Curmudgeon and smiled.

“That’s right.  That’s how this company hires:  personality.  If you have it, if you’re positive, you get the job.  If you don’t have it, they don’t care how much parking experience you have, they’re not going to hire you.”

The Curmudgeon mentioned this to the friend he was meeting at the game and his friend immediately summoned a parallel to some of his own experiences, noting that the people who work at one fast food restaurant he frequents (alas, Chick-fil-A) are always positive and friendly while those at another (Wendy’s) tend to be pretty sour.

So where do you think he prefers to eat his occasional poison?

A lot of businesses could learn lessons from customer experiences like these.

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