- In one bed, he watered the leaves because these were the focus of his harvest; being the only part of the vegetable plant he would eat. This naturally became his area of focus and emphasis. To his surprise, the leaves were wilting and dying despite the attention.
- In the other bed, he thought of starving the leaves by not watering them but just watering the soil around the vegetables. It seemed like he was misfiring by shooting bullets at a wrong target. To his surprise this bed produced healthy green leafy vegetables.
The meaning of the Service Parable
The sad reality is that what we have often celebrated as the best service strategies and programs are merely a focus on the leaves rather than the roots. Everyone sees the green leaves and compliments, but the roots that make the leaves green are hidden in the ground, behind the scenes and less remembered. The sobering thought is to recollect that what is external is usually created and sustained by that which is internal hence the need to concentrate on the internal rather than that which is external. When internal roots are addressed, they make external leaves flourish. The flourishing leaves in turn feed the roots through photosynthesis. If you start working on your service character, the character will eventually start working on your service personality. Start investing in your roots today!
True Service Resonates from the Heart
Customer service is an external gesture extended to customers. It is a product manufactured by our hearts and only expressed through our actions and words as service.
The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks” Luke 6v45. Your level of service is a barometer for measuring the goodness of your heart.
- Service that is only external is neither enduring nor longsuffering; it quickly evaporates and wilts because it has no roots.
- Only service given from the heart is genuine and stands the test of time.
- King Solomon shared his wisdom thus “Guard your heart with all diligence for out of it flows the issues of life.” Proverbs 4v23
- Water your ‘service roots’ by feeding your heart with love, care, compassion, helpfulness, joy, gentleness, goodness, self-control etc and sooner or later your ‘service leaves’ will start to grow.
- Trying to water just the leaves by coming up with customer service programs which are merely external is unfortunate yet at times celebrated.
The mystery of the green leaves is that you get the green leaves by watering the roots not the leaves. You get lasting service by feeding your heart with goodness not by just learning customer service skills. These skills need to be transferred from the head to the heart.
Stop watering the LEAVES, Start watering the ROOTS!