Delicious Leadership Service Part 2: Lessons from Canlis

At TEAMTRI we believe great leadership happens from the inside out. And, we believe that every organization whether it’s a family, a nonprofit, a publicly traded company, or a family owned restaurant has the capacity and responsibility to learn and practice sincere, authentic, and real leadership to serve others—and when real leadership happens everyone benefits and grows.

So, while we do our work in leadership, we are constantly reading, studying, and searching for examples of leaders and organizations who have figured out real service and leadership. Enjoy the delicious leadership insights from Trevor and Michelle’s experience dining at Canlis Restaurant in Seattle in Part 2 of 4 of this series. And thank you again to the Canlis Crew for exceeding the incredibly high expectations we had for you!

Lesson 2: Share a Story

By Trevor Mulholland

We sat at the table of the Canlis Founder, Peter Canlis. While our server Miranda was explaining the courses, we noticed a telephone (not a cell phone) sitting next to our Disco Dome for saletable. Miranda explained that before the founder passed away, Peter would sit at this table when not visiting with guests and watch the interactions happening throughout the restaurant. He had the phone installed so that he could call each station to ensure every table was receiving the level of service that he expected. Later during the meal, Miranda called us on this telephone to ensure that our meal was meeting these same expectations the founder had set over 60 years ago.

Lessons: There are so many lessons in this telephone story. The first lesson we picked up on was the power of observational leadership. Mr. Canlis set a standard of high expectation, observed closely to ensure each customer was receiving it, and took it one step further by installing the telephone to validate that it was happening—in real time (not via a post experience survey on a website like we so often find in our digital world today).

The second lesson we experienced was the power of the story. The telephone was a story trigger. By telling the telephone story, Miranda ensured that even though Mr. Canlis had passed away, he left a way to pass on the things that are important. She channeled the high service standards of the founder from yesterday right to our very meal today. Great leaders multiply greater leaders. And, Canlis uses a telephone to help ensure the story and delivery of great services continues to be written with each and every meal.

Application: We are going to look for the “telephone” in our worlds that tells the story of something far greater than it may initially seem. Like the red wagon logo for America’s Promise or the apple logo at Apple, there are stories waiting to be told and multiplied in simple everyday items. And, when there is a story to tell we’re going to tell it!

Up Next… How to Fire Up Your Delicious Leadership Service

Thank you for joining us for this second part of our series on Delicious Leadership Service. Join us for Part 3 as we highlight how to “fire up” your service and make people feel special.

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