As we are new to the country (moved here to live from Ireland just a few months ago) we didn’t really know much about baseball stadiums or how it all works so instead of booking tickets online my husband phoned them up.
He spoke to a guy called Andrew. He explained that we were newbies to the country and to baseball and asked for help with deciding where to sit in the stadium, where to park etc.
Andrew was beyond helpful. He advised my husband on where to sit so that we didn’t fry in the sun (having lived in Ireland for seven years baking sun is something we are not used to!), he advised on where to park and even recommended a little park nearby for a picnic before the game.
When my husband came off the phone he was raving about the service and help he had received.
It stood out because so many companies these days just want to book your tickets and get you off the phone as quick as possible. They don’t actually care about you. But Andrew did. He cared enough to help my husband not only buy tickets but offer advice to maximise our experience and enjoyment of the event.
But that isn’t what Andrew did that went the extra mile. Here’s what happened next:
The day of the baseball game arrived. All three of us were stupidly excited.
We settled into our seats and the game began. We didn’t really understand what the hell was going on but some kind folks sitting around us took us under their wing and explained some of the rules as the game went along.
Part way through the match a guy came up the stairs and said to my husband “are you Martin?”
“Yes” my husband replied.
“Hi, I’m Andrew, we spoke on the phone. Just wanted to check you were having a good time. If there is anything I can do or help you with let me know.”
Then Andrew turned to our young son and said “How are you enjoying your first baseball match?”
By this stage our nine year old son was in love with the whole baseball experience. “I LOVE it” he replied.
Andrew said “Thought you might like a little souvenir of your first baseball match. Would you like this?”
I wish I had a video to show you of my son’s face. It lit up like the brightest star in the sky. It made his day. We all thanked Andrew profusely.
This young man had not only fallen over backwards to help my husband on the phone but also had gone to the time and effort to find us during the match to check everything was OK and then did something for a nine year old boy that he will never forget.
Andrew had gone the extra mile to ensure that a family that he had never met had the best experience possible. He cared. And THAT is what made all the difference.
His actions created a family experience we will never forget. I will never forget the look on my son’s face when he was handed that ball. My son won’t forget his first baseball match and how he felt. Andrew gave us a precious family memory. That is priceless.
So what can we all learn from Andrew Forsyth and our family experience at the Vancouver Canadians?
1. Going the extra mile isn’t about some big flashy expensive gesture. As Andrew beautifully demonstrated, going the extra mile is about giving thought to what might be special for someone and then acting on it. It is about caring.
2. From a business perspective, going the extra mile creates loyal, raving fans who keep buying off you and recommend you to their family and friends. We have already bought tickets for our next match and also are organising a bigger group visit with other family and friends for next season.
3. From a personal perspective, going the extra mile with thoughtful caring actions strengthens and improves relationships – business and personal.
4. Going the extra mile makes you and your business stand out in a world that is riddled with mediocrity.
So I invite you to look for ways that you could to go the extra mile. Show you care. See what difference it makes in your life, business and relationships.