Service Parable of the Traffic Cop

In one of Harare’s Eastern townships lives a man named Frank. He wakes up at 4 am as though he is planning to catch his rural bus that comes to Harare only once a week; just so he can try and avoid the traffic jam to work. With no packed lunch, he leaves for work with the cold words of his wife Chihera still ringing fresh “If you don’t have relish for tonight’s dinner, don’t bother coming back home”. Even though he dreads the very thought of waking up to go back to that workplace where his boss does not even like him, he has no choice. “Oh come on, not another traffic jam” he sighs. The last thing he needs at this point is to be stuck in a traffic jam. There is hooting here, hooting there, hooting from every angle but no car is moving and every driver is getting impatient. He can not afford to be late for work knowing well his boss will ‘vampire’ him. He can only pray that his boss is also stuck in a worse traffic jam.

“Mai Nigel you will have to continue without me, I will find my way to work and I will call you when I have spoken to my boss about the funeral, said Trymore the traffic cop as he disembarked from the car. “Let me help these motorists who are stuck in this traffic jam”, he went on to say. As soon as Trymore got to the traffic intersection, he started directing the traffic and the cars began to move. Trymore started making some dance moves as he was directing the traffic much to the delight of the drivers who were also getting free entertainment. “You corrupt police, we are not giving you any money if that is what you are looking for”, yelled one motorists as he drove off. More motorists continued to scoff at Trymore on the ethics of his fellow traffic cops but this did not deter him. Unknown to the scoffers, Trymore was on his way to work just to request some days off as his mother who had been sick for 3 years had died that morning. Even though he was in a hurry, he could not ignore the desperation of the stuck drivers and moved in to assist with zeal despite his own predicament. He did not ignore a cry for help even though those around him were unaware of his own need for help and comfort. . Thanks to Trymore’s efforts, motorists like Frank arrived to work on time thus avoiding the insults of his boss and ending his day on a good note with Chihera.  


1. Be kinder than necessary. Someone you meet may be having an equally bad day but they may still choose to make someone else’s day inspite of their own circumstances.

2. If you are having a bad day, don’t make everyone else pay for it. Your attitude is your choice.

3. Don’t paint everyone with the same brush. Not everyone offers excellent service to get a kick back. True service also exists among ServiceCaptains.

About Service Captains

Patience is a Certified International Customer Service Professional(CICSP) with the IAPM. She holds a Bachelor of Business Studies and Computer Science(BBSCT) degree, a Certificate and Award in Customer Service from The City and Guilds of the London Institute among other qualifications. She is currently studying for a Theology degree. Over and above being an Evangelist, she is a Trainer and Speaker on Service Quality, Personal Branding, Presentation Skills, Servant Leadership, Grooming and Etiquette. With 15 years experience in the Banking Sector, much of it spent handling a Service Quality portfolio, Patience says "I have been called to serve. I am here to turn ordinary people into servant leaders who will unleash their greatness through Service Excellence. I aspire to inspire you to serve God and mankind. The world needs more people who would like to dedicate their lives to promoting kindness, love, gentleness, goodness etc and the best place to start is with you and me, here. I am a Service Captain, Be a Service Captain!"
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