Essays

Service

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Someone who works at a bank recently shared with me some things she had learned in a workshop she attended as part of her training. As the world of business becomes more global there is more competition. Some American corporations are finally realizing service is the area that can make or break their business. Unfortunately, many publicly traded companies are managed by boards who put profit before service in a primitive approach to business. The idea of service is new to many capitalists and not catching on as quickly as consumers might like. It was journalist and social critic, H.L. Mencken who observed, No one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public. Sadly, we are as suggestible now as we were during the 1920s and 30s when Mr. Mencken was most active. He even coined a quasi-scientific term for the ignorant American Joe — Boobus Americanus. His account of the Scopes Monkey Trial so enraged locals that police had to rescue him from an angry mob. The difference now is that we don’t beat our prophets with thigh bones. We now follow Samson’s lead and pound away at them with the jawbone of an ass.

And Samson said, With the jawbone of an ass heaps upon heaps, with the jawbone of an ass have I slain a thousand men (Judges 15:16).

She told me some of the latest statistics concerning customer service. Before the internet, one unhappy customer would spread their negative perspective to one hundred people. Since the internet they estimate the number to be closer to one thousand. The other thing she learned is that satisfied customers tend to tell no one, proving valid what English philosopher, Edmund Burke said,

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

A man asked me the other day why negative emotions were so easy to follow while going with better I’s seemed nearly impossible. My answer was that negative emotions take minimal initial effort and no personal responsibility. In the long run they cost much more but people in a negative state are so short sighted they can’t see beyond their dissatisfaction with their lives to count the cost of remaining in their habitual negative states. Research also found the one unhappy customer usually got to the business unhappy determined to leave as they came.

We receive about one hundred emails thanking us for our service to one complaining that we didn’t give away enough. We could easily weigh in with Billy Wilder and Clare Boothe Luce who commented,

No good deed goes unpunished.

An accomplished thief told me the other night that thieves are always expecting someone to steal from them. It’s true that many organizations hire ex thieves to look over their security and find the loop holes. Esoterically this is an immutable law. What you give you get, or in the case of a thief, what you take is taken from you. While speaking with a friend in Macedonia she observed that negative people could be doing something useful with their energy, like learning another language or developing some skill that would make the world, even their small world, a better place. A wise perspective to be sure, but being enslaved in negative states bars the door to wisdom, effectively keeping the negative prisoners in their self-created and self-perpetuated hell in much the same way greed enslaves companies who rarely think of serving their customers.

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About Esoteric Talks

"No good deed goes unpunished."

The person most frequently credited as the originator of the phrase is playwright Clare Boothe Luce. Also credited have been playwright Noel Coward, writer Oscar Wilde, journalist Walter Winchell and the late Washington Post writer Bill Gold. The original idea is probably an ancient proverb.

Appearing cynical on the surface, a closer examination of human nature reveals the False Personality to be incredibly vengeful and petty due to its hubris.

Plato has Socrates say, "An unexamined life is not worth living." The reason no good deed goes unpunished is because most people are living lives not worth living. If you feel a sting that probably means you.