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Catch It on the Inside

My favorite, er, watering hole, is the Iron Goat pub and restaurant, located just a tad too close to my home office. They have the best mountain views in Canmore, great food and consistently stellar customer service.  When dealing with a service issue, one of their mottoes is, “Catch it on the inside.” 

You don't want this guy escaping!

You don’t want this guy escaping into the wild!

In other words, make sure everyone is well taken care of and happy before they leave, especially if someone has a problem that might fester and escape into the wild. Because trust me, if a problem escapes into the wild, there’s a good chance  it’ll come back to bite you.

Similarly, as you exit the Washington D.C. Italian restaurant il Canale, there’s a photo of the smiling owner with the following caption: “I need your help! If you had anything less than a great experience, call my cell phone at … .”  Offering up  his personal mobile number sends a powerful message about expectations to employees and customers.  And once again, it’s about capturing a potential problem before it escapes and runs rampant.

“Catch it on the inside” is also a great motto for dealing with unresolved issues in any meeting situation. Rather than having people go back to their offices with unanswered questions or feeling frustrated, set a goal to make sure everyone leaves a meeting feeling better about things than when they came in. You may not always get there, but it’s a worthy goal to pursue.

Finally, “catch it on the inside” is also a great end-of-the-workday motto. Whenever possible deal with contentious issues before heading home for the day so they don’t hitch a ride back home with you. Try creating a fun end-of-the-day ritual to create a separation between your work and home life. Again, not always easy, but worth the effort. (For more suggestions on how to end your workday, check out the Forbes article “14 Things You Should Do at the end of the Work Day.”)

Michael Kerr, Februrary 2014. Michael Kerr is a very funny motivational speaker and international business speaker.


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