day 259: Consistently The Same

My wife Patti and I sometimes choose to fly on the redeye, overnight, to the east coast. We do this when we are just going for a short time and don’t want to lose a day flying, or when we are flying with Louie, our French Bulldog, so he can sleep overnight. We actually hate the redeyes because even though we save the time, the flights tend to wipe us out physically. That said, when we get on the flight we prepare ourselves to get the best short night of sleep as we can. This last flight, it was hard to get a good sleep as the airline did not have any pillows to provide their passengers. When we asked about this, they said, “we don’t know what happened, no overnight flights tonight have pillows, sorry”. While it didn’t mean that much to the flight attendants, who were going to go through their regular routine, regardless of pillows or not, this inconsistent quality meant much to the passengers who were depending on a pillow as part of the baseline offering and foundational tool for them to gather a few hours of sleep. It would be interesting to understand where the breakdown was in their operating system that allows for them to not have pillows provided, and especially on the redeye flights. As consumers and co-workers we depend on, and expect others to deliver consistent quality and a sameness in their jobs. While the flight attendants seemed nonplussed over the fact that flight operations had not provided pillows, in reality, they had to answer that question over and over on that flight, taking away from the ambiance of service that they were prepared to deliver. And they had to answer for others less than consistent quality of work. This adds a stress to their jobs. Our co-workers and our customers want a consistency from us. They want to know what to expect and then be able to count on a consistent level of delivery and quality. They want the same out of us today as yesterday. Our ability to be consistent and work to a level of predictable quality is an example that we can attain from our Lord. God made sure, even from the beginning that He was the same, day in and day out. And even when humans make mistakes and are the inconsistent link in his quality, He recovers and reinstates His sameness. We see this in the story of the Ten Commandments. When Moses broke the first tablets, God did not start all over, He instead returned to the sameness that was Him. We read in Deuteronomy 10:2 “and I will write on the tablets the same words that were on the ones you smashed. Then place the tablets in the Ark.” As humans we want and expect the sameness from each other. While we want to be different and not live and work in the same, a consistent delivery, a sameness can be exactly what others need to work well with us, continue the work started, or even to get a good night’s sleep. Think today about how consistently you are delivering the “same” that others need and expect from you.

Reference: Deuteronomy 10:2 (New Living Testament)

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