Developing a long and sustainable relationship with others need more than meeting their expectations. The only few who never complain about the increasing competition are the ones that exceed others’ expectations. They understand how going the extra mile can make a difference in their lives as well as in the lives of those whom they serve. The majority who barely meet the expectations are serving out of duty while the few who excel are those who serve out of love. It’s the difference between what your mind dictates and what your heart directs.
Competition lurks where delivering on the “as-usual” tasks. In the business world, competitors who suffer by time are service-centered. Their duty is to just keep up their promises to their customers. The intention is to keep business formalities because it is the customer that needs to be served and when the customer responds to the service by saying “thank you”, the company reacts “it’s our duty.” That’s meeting the customer expectations. The majority do what is required. For me, duty is synonymous with “I have to do it.”
To make competition irrelevant is to go the extra mile. You are serving out of love not out of duty. When embracing this concept, a beautiful thing happens: you feel a sense of responsibility towards making a difference in your customers’ lives. Now you care for your customer; you want to give him more than expected. You don’t give a damn about functionality and duty. You invest time and money in communicating with him and understanding how you can best serve him. You are pouring your heart into getting a long-term customer experience rather than the short-term delivering on your promise. That is the fine line between being an also-ran and a great company. The also-ran is mind-managed while the few great ones are heart-led.
The leader knows how to out-perform and over-deliver. That’s what Tom Cruise did when he joined the team, as a lead character, in the movie Jerry Maguire. The writer-Director Cameron Crowe was worried about Cruise popularity and how he can make changes in script, actors and even replacing the director if he doesn’t like him. But Cruise didn’t do any of that. He didn’t assume any control and willingly listened to the directions of his crew. But upon testing the movie before launching, the movie performed poorly at the box office.
Related: Show Me the MONEY!!!!!
Cruise stepping in at this defining moment made all the difference. He insisted on playing the role of the promoter to give the movie a push. He managed to make interviews with Larry King and others to market the movie. Should Cruise reacted out of duty, he is to stay put as a movie star, but acting out of love far exceeds his team’s expectations. It was evident that the director was not complacent with Cruise’s long-lived quote in the movie, “Show Me the MONEY!”, but he needed a whole-hearted promoter who can make Jerry Maguire movie a box office smash.
Going the extra mile is the surefire way to build a long and sustainable relationship. It is a way that demands sacrifices of your time and money in the short-term but yields fulfilling rewards of evolving relationship in the long-term.