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  • Writer's pictureRobert Eckelman

Let's return to the spirit of pre-covid excellence and bring back extraordinary!

The difference between ordinary and extraordinary

Ordinary-common, average, routine, typical, compliance..

Extraordinary- exceptional, remarkable, outstanding, surprising

Last week I had the opportunity to live in the extraordinary 

I just returned form a cruise. It was absolutely phenomenal! Every staff member I met went above and beyond to make it an amazing experience. Having cruised before COVID, I noticed some changes since the pandemic that actually made it even better.

While I don’t have specific details on how employees are compensated, I believe tips play a significant role. I pre-paid around $200 in gratuities.

My personal thought is that prepaid gratuities are a base, and customer-facing cruise ship employees rely on extra tips to boost their income. Without any hesitation I added extra gratuities at every contact point

Cruise ship employees work hard, they put in long hours, they sacrifice time away from their families (6 months shifts). They handle diverse passengers in various states of sobriety.

For me, there is always a lesson. This cruise highlighted the difference between base pay and service/performance pay. I have always worked in a service/performance pay environment and understand the importance of exceptional service. It's not just about doing the bare minimum; it's about exceeding expectations and creating loyal customers who become raving fans. My customers are my #1 source of new business.

Here's another interesting thing: Pre-pandemic, cruise ship employees likely knew their next cruise would be full. Then, almost overnight, the industry shut down, taking away their jobs and their families' income. Keep in mind 80 to 90% of cruise ship workers are not from the US. My feeling is that these workers are thrilled to be sailing again, earning a living, and supporting their loved ones. Overall, the crew seemed genuinely happy to have their jobs. Like most things in life you don't know what you have until it's gone. For me, this has always formed a strong base for appreciation

I wish I could bottle that enthusiasm!

I can't help but contrast this with my experiences in the US, post-COVID. It seems like most workers here just want to get by with minimal effort. I, for one, would love to see a shift in our work culture – one where everyone is happy to have a job and strives to deliver a great experience.

Let's bring back extraordinary




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