Philip Crosby, one of the leading gurus in quality improvement, took me to breakfast when he hired me in 1983 and during the meal gave me a gift. The gift was a wooden box with a Cross pen inserted. Engraved on the box was the word ADEPT. He explained the meaning of the acronym:
A is for Accuracy
D is for Discreet
E is for Enthusiasm
P is for Productive
T is for Thrifty.
He made it very clear that if I was to become a successful employee at his firm, I would practice these behaviors.
Years later when I was hired by the Disney Institute, I spent a full day and a half in an orientation where it was made very clear that there were three things Walt Disney considered most important to his guests:
By the end of the orientation, I knew that if I was to be successful as a speaker/seminar leader and cast member at Walt Disney World, I must keep my work area clean, be aggressively courteous, and look for ways to help my guests have fun.
When top management defines what’s important, it makes it easier for an employee to be successful. They don’t have to guess. They know and can spend their efforts accomplishing these behaviors instead of trying to figure out which foot to put in front of the other. It allows them to focus on the customer and creating a memorable customer experience.