Everybody says that they put the customer first.

Everybody says that they provide solutions to other’s problems.

Everybody says that they’re basically near perfect.

But companies, like people, often exhibit a huge gap between what they say and what they actually do.

There’s often a breakdown between the espoused values of a company and the values in action.

Consider the following study from the 1970s where two prominent social psychologists (Darley & Batson) set out to try and better understand what influences people to help others. They carried out their study by testing the classic Bible parable of the “Good Samaritan.”

You’ve probably heard of this study before. If not, you can read about it HERE.

In the study, some seminary students stopped and helped a man who was lying on the ground, eyes closed, and violently coughing.

But less than two-thirds did, and only ten percent of those who were in a hurry stopped to help.

It seems that no matter how they would describe themselves to their friends and family, as soon as a minor inconvenience cropped up, they threw out their espoused values of helping others and busily hurried on their way.

It’s easy to find excuses not to live our true values, either personal or corporate.

Our mission statements say that we put quality and customer service above all else, but front line experiences often seem directly antithetical to our lofty vision statements.

And this study points out the reasons why – it’s easy to ignore our higher motivations when there are pressing personal concerns.

It’s easy for companies to say that they’re committed to creating world-class customer experiences, and to ensuring that everyone throughout the organization continues to improve their skills in these areas.

But when budgets are tight, and deadlines loom, it’s also easy to put these goals aside and ignore learning opportunities in favor of just getting through the current busyness, or dealing with the latest business emergency (as if another one won’t pop up next week!)

Every company says they’re a learning organization.

Every company says that they put customers first.

The best way to guarantee your espoused values match your values in action is to register and attend the first ever Evergreen Summit in Toronto, Ontario.

You’ll learn strategies and practices that will help take your company to the next level when it comes to customer care. You can register HERE.

Unless, of course, you’re in a hurry.