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It’s Monday. To paraphrase Scottish-born Canadian singer/songwriter Johnny Reid, today I’m gonna try and change the world.
When you do your job with passion and purpose, you change the world. You probably don’t know even know you’re doing it.
A few weeks ago, a United Airlines agent changed our world. My family was booked on a short vacation to Hawaii. I had been invited to speak at a Wednesday afternoon luncheon, so we booked a Sunday to Friday getaway around it. It was a seriously long way to travel (nearly 20 hours from the east coast!) for such as short trip, but our kids are teenagers and growing up too fast… and we thought it would be crazy to let a chance to spend time with our kids in Hawaii go by. So we booked it.
On the morning we were to leave, bad weather and bad luck conspired to cancel our flight. We were automatically rebooked for Wednesday… three days later! That meant our already short Hawaiian vacation would be a two day trip, and there is no point in flying 20 hours for a two day vacation. The United agent I spoke to wasn’t terribly helpful, and simply told us that there was nothing more they could do. We could take it, or leave it and get our money back.
After breaking the bad news to our kids, I called United back to cancel our family’s trip. I would go to Hawaii alone and treat the trip as pure business. There would be no family vacation.
This time a different United agent answer the phone. Her name was Simone, and her first reaction was refreshing.
“Why on earth are you canceling a family vacation to Hawaii?” she asked. I explained our situation and the lack of options presented to us by United.
“Well, that can’t happen,” she said. “There has got to be a way we can get you there. We are not canceling this trip!”
That was Simone’s attitude from the get-go. And 30 minutes later our vacation was saved. We would arrive in Hawaii later than planned, but we would only lose 24 hours of our vacation.
Because one single employee at United Airlines did her job with passion and purpose, a family grew closer. Our kids learned to surf. We savored Matsumoto’s shave ice and ate at Giovanni’s shrimp truck. We dined at Duke’s and watched the sunset from Rum Fire. We saw the sun come up over Diamond Head. We laughed and relaxed and appreciated the valuable family time together. It was a great trip.
From where I sit, Simone changed the world.
Her decision to do her job with passion and purpose gave us that priceless trip.
It’s Monday. What world will you change today?Photo credits: top photo from www.sxc.hu user Storm11080, photo below by Steve Jones.