Take Care of Those Who Take Care of You

Quote for the Day
“My grandfather once told me
that there are two kinds of people:
those who work and those who take the credit.
He told me to try to be in the first group;
there was less competition there.”

~Indira Gandhi~

Thought for the Day
For many years I worked in middle management for corporate America. Those of you who are there now know that middle managers; do all the work, make little money, and get none of the credit. I usually had no problem with this because I knew that what I did made a difference, and what I did first and foremost was take care of those who worked for me, then I took care of the customer next, and last I took care of my boss and the company.

I asked my boss once what he thought the number one rule in business was. Like most business people he of course said, “To take care of the customer.” To which I replied, “Wrong, the number one rule is to take care of your employees, for if you do not have good employees how can you expect to take care of the customer.”

I was warehouse/shipping manager for this particular boss, I had a crew of grunts who worked for me, they worked long hard days and for meager pay. I took care of them, and they in return took care of me, and together we took care of the customer and the company.

We dealt with many long haul freight carriers, every week I had freight sales people trying to earn our business. They came offering gifts/bribes, I always found this unpleasant and distasteful, it was common practice and was sometimes unavoidable. However, that was not my practice and I did not participate.

I remember one sales person in particular, every week he tried to take me to some fancy restaurant for an expensive meal. I grew weary of these proposals and finally I responded one day, “Do your really want to buy me some groceries?” to which he replied, “Well sure, of course.” So I told him, “Then this is what I want you to do, show up here Friday with a dozen pizzas and feed this warehouse crew, they are the ones loading your trucks, not me.”

To my surprise not only did he agree and did just that, word got out to the other freight companies and they too wanted to feed the warehouse crew. From that point on every Friday we had a freight company that brought pizzas to feed these hard working underpaid workers.

It was a win-win, the freight companies got to use their expense account to buy us gifts, the warehouse crew got a free meal, and I got a dedicated, loyal, even harder working crew. I looked after them, and they looked after me.

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