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SERVE Like Robin

Samantha was talking to her neighbor who was moving out of town and asked him what he’ll miss most when he moves. He answered, “I know it sounds funny, but one of the things I’m going to really miss is my mail lady. She’s just awesome!”

Since this wasn’t anything like the answer she was expecting, Samantha asked, “Who’s your mail lady and what’s so great about her?” Her neighbor answered that her name is Robin and he likes her because she always has a friendly word for him and delivers first-rate customer service.

“Wait a minute!” Samantha replied. “I know Robin. She’s my best friend!” Her neighbor hadn’t known this when he had given his endorsement, but was glad that he was able to pass along his sentiments to someone who knew Robin.

The funny thing is, this isn’t the first time I’ve run into a story like this about Robin. I have heard people who don’t even know that I know her praising her customer service.

Robin also happens be my favorite postal worker because she exemplifies all five points of my SERVE Method customer service program. She always…

Surprises her customers with excellent service. Robin will always take the time to say hello to her customers and ask how they are doing. It’s not unusual for her to call you by name and remember something you told her a couple weeks ago.
“Hey, Ron! How’s your wife doing after her surgery?”
“Hey, Susan! How was your vacation?”
“Hey, Reggie! How are your kids liking that new dog?”
Robin knows that every business is about people first and she always makes sure people know that she genuinely cares about their well-being. And in return, she has their undying loyalty.
Takeaway: All customer service begins with a genuine concern about the well-being of others.

Evaluates her customers’ needs. Robin always listens when her customers have something to tell her. When they tell her they’re going on vacation or they have a question about a package delivery, Robin is all ears and makes sure that her customers feel like they’ve been heard.
Takeaway: The first sign of respect is listening.

Responds in a positive way. Robin once told me about a lady that ran out to her truck screaming angrily at her in another language. Robin told me later that she thinks the woman was upset that she had knocked on her door for a special delivery but she didn’t know that at the time. Robin listened patiently while the woman yelled and then she apologized (for what she wasn’t exactly sure). With the woman still fuming at her, Robin got into her Jeep and then called out “Love you!” as she drove away. The result of that response was the woman was calm and sweet from that day on. Robin laughs at that story now and will tell you that she had never responded that way before or after that time, but I love that her response toward someone screaming at her was kindness.
Takeaway: Always take the high road and respond with kindness, especially when others are being unfair or rude.

Validates her customer’s trust in her. When Robin says she’s going to do something, she does it. When she says she will check on something for you or take care of you, she always does. I contend that this is the main reason her customers are her biggest fans.
Takeaway: Be known as a someone that people can trust.

Exceeds expectations. For years Robin carried a pocketful of sugarless gum with her on her route. After first gaining permission from the parents, she would offer a piece to the children on her route. Not because anyone told her to or made her. She just wanted to do something special for the people she served.
Takeaway: Make it your goal to do more than is required.

Robin is retiring at the end of this month after 32 years of service to her community. So at the end of her career, I salute Robin, the very best mail lady I’ve ever known, and who, by the way, I am honored to call my sister.

© 2019 Charles Marshall. Charles Marshall is a nationally known humorous motivational speaker and author. Visit his Web site  or contact him via e-mail at

Disclaimer: I’m aware that other writers have used postal workers as examples of excellent customer service (e.g. The Fred Factor by Mark Sanborn), but I felt I might tread into this topic briefly, for the purpose of celebrating my sister and her excellent legacy of customer service.

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