Little Things. Big Results.

Last week on his company's blog, Tom Miller, President of The Miller Company, wrote about an experience he recently had taking a cab ride through downtown Chicago.  He chronicles riding in a cab driven by Moon S. Choi, who was recently voted as Chicago's Best Cab and Best Cab Driver in 2010. What makes him the best? It's all the little touches that Choi puts into his cab service. Miller describes the unique cab atmosphere in this way:

" My senses painted the picture in this order - classical music at just the right volume was playing on the radio, the inside of the car was immaculate (when I got out of the car at my destination, I noticed the handle of a small hand-held vacuum under the front seat), and there was a fresh bottle of water in the side of both back doors along with a pad of receipts."

In addition, Choi takes a quicker and roughly 25% cheaper route to Miller's destination than normal cabbies. As a result, Miller tips him more than he would a normal driver, takes a picture with him and takes time to write a post about the experience. Assuming that Choi has had similar reactions, that's a lot of success for a cabbie. The secret to the success? It's nothing big or elaborate about a simple cab ride that Choi does. It's all the little details like the music, cleanliness, bottled water that make a ride in his cab so enjoyable.

Rewarding Small Behaviors

It's easy to take the little things forgranted. Small behaviors that are often overlooked can make or break things for a company. These seemingly insignificant habits or attributes of a worker over time could have a significant impact on a business. Re-enforcing those small positive behaviors with recogntion or a reward will see a positive return down the road. Little behaviors added up create an overall image of an employee or company. Take a look at Choi. Playing soft classical music, a small bottle of water and the quick route were tiny little thing in of themeselves. However, combine those things and they create an overwhelmingly positive customer experience, paying off much larger returns for Choi in the long term.

It's a culmination of small behaviors and actions that help achieve company goals. In basketball, the ability to be able to shoot free throws seems insignificant in relation to ball-handling, size and footspeed on the court. However, free throws have helped make or break championship efforts for some basketball teams. An automaker employee's lack of attention to a certain detail can result in a recall costing millions of dollars.

How are you rewarding the little things your workers do right?

Does focusing on tiny matters help the big picture?