Tuesday’s Musing: “…helping people get on with their lives” – George Kosich, former CEO, Hudson’s Bay Company
by Lisa Seppala, True North Implementation
I worked for The Bay early in my career – an excellent training ground for a new manager! George Kosich, the CEO of the Hudson’s Bay Company, the parent company of The Bay, Zellers, Fields, and Simpsons at the time, toured stores regularly. During one visit, I remember him saying, “We’re in the business of helping people get on with their lives.” Now, decades later, in a completely different field, that wisdom continues to guide me. I get frustrated when situations don’t allow me to get on with my life, and I try to prevent myself from causing delays for others.
Recent experience with service
Within the last two months, both my car and motorcycle insurance came due for renewal. We had recently moved to a new city, and anything that made the process easy was the path I chose. My car’s renewal process was super smooth with my existing broker. He and the fact that renewals can occur remotely (thanks to COVID-19) made it easy. Done and dusted within an hour.
My motorcycle renewal process was anything but smooth, at least initially. Like all diligent brokers, the one who had handled my motorcycle insurance in the past sent me information in advance of the renewal date. Then the diligence stopped, followed by many unreturned phone calls and emails. Even contacting the main desk at the brokerage yielded no results. With a looming renewal date and a strong desire to ride on the next sunny day, I chose to find a new broker. After reaching out to two other firms, I found someone who could help me immediately. ICBC basic insurance – check! Specialized motorcycle insurance – check! Nice! In minutes, I went from feeling frustrated and unvalued as a customer to feeling grateful and now loyal to a new insurance brokerage. The team that helped me took the time to follow up and follow through, and I could get on with my life. Thank you, Sussex Insurance at Nanaimo Superstore! www.sussexinsurance.com
Applying this experience to the workplace
This experience led me to think about the many ways we show up for others as leaders. Acknowledgment and follow-through are critical to letting our teams and customers know that they matter to us and are supported. In psychological safety terms, these are components of psychological and social support, one of the 13 factors* that can affect psychological health and safety in the workplace. Improving support leads to increased commitment, trust, and satisfaction amongst our teams and with our customers.
*Source: National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace (CAN/CSA-Z1003-13/BNQ 9700-803/2013)