|Most days, we teachers leave the light sabers at home...|
"Teaching is a privilege. It's part of a Jedi's responsibility to help train the next generation."
This quote is from the back of my son's "Clone Wars" book, and I love it. For not being a true fan, I really do find a lot of teaching inspiration in the many variations of Star Wars! As teachers, we should all aim for this should be our daily mantra. Do we approach our work in this way each day? It is certainly a challenge, but the attitude that we carry day to day leaves a lasting impression on everyone we come into contact with each day. Please allow me to tell you a little story about some workers in another job with a terrific attitude...
Do you ever eat at Chic-fil-A? Don't you just love their customer service? I've never met a Chic-fil-A employee who didn't seem 100% content and happy at their workplace...their mantra is "My pleasure!" Really, they say it all of the time...Listen to one of my experiences at that establishment:
After enjoying the meal and excellent customer service, (it was their pleasure!) with my three children, we went into the indoor play area, which is always one of their favorite elements in the Chic-fil-A experience. While in the play area, one of my children just happened to VOMIT on the play floor, which is made of a porous material that is soft for safety, but incredibly difficult to clean vomit out of! Because I couldn't just make a discreet swipe at the mess with a pile of napkins very successfully, I shamefully had to point out the problem to an employee, who responded with "My pleasure!" While I'm sure that phrase wasn't the first thought that popped into her mind, her quick response did make me feel like a little less of an imposition on her day.
After rounding up the two healthy children (who were none too pleased to have to leave earlier than expected) and carrying the ill child out of the play area, I began a futile search for my car keys. Coat pocket? No. Overflowing purse? Shyeah, right. Diaper bag? No. Uhhh, the tray that I had hurriedly dumped into the trash??? The very trash that I'd just seen a Chic-fil-A employee emptying (His Pleasure!)????!!
I explained my second crisis in roughly 1.5 minutes to a manager, who promptly volunteered to go dumpster-diving where the trash had just been disposed. HER PLEASURE!! Seriously, these people have no limits!! What must their training sessions consist of that makes them so happily handle all of the problems that their customers can muster up to throw at them??
Even though she assured me that it was, of course, her pleasure, I was feeling awful that we put these supremely-nice people through such an ordeal. As she headed out the back of the restaurant, I sank into a booth with my kids, who were digging around in my purse to locate their newest treasures from the kid's meal bag. They didn't manage to find their toys, but one of them did end up pulling out MY KEYS!! From the depths of my overflowing purse!! I was the "girl who cried 'dumped-my-keys-in-the-trash'" and some nice Chic-fil-A manager was probably chest-high in muck all because of my own irresponsibility!!
And, of course, after her co-workers helped her out of the dumpster, they all waved good-bye to us with a heartfelt...
True story. Sometimes I find inspiration in the strangest places, but while I always knew that Chic-fil-A provided great service with terrific attitude, I never knew how far they could be pushed until that day. When I'm having a day where I'm feeling pushed to my limit, I remember the Chic-fil-A philosophy, and combine it with my quote from Obi-Wan, and respond, "My Privilege!"