Please and Thank You. Words we learned very early on – often known as the “magic words”. Whether they came via prompting by an adult or of our own accord, we quickly learned they usually brought positive results – a smile, praise, even a reward. They weren’t difficult to remember and were typically considered to be basic, common courtesy.
So why, then, are they so often forgotten about as we grow older?
Waiting at the check-out counter of a nearby grocery store the other day, I could not help but notice when the clerk did not use them. “That will be $28.72.” and “Here’s your receipt — have a nice day.” Was she polite? Yes. Friendly? Perhaps. Personable? I suppose so. So why do I feel like her customer service skills could use improvement?
Because there was no please or thank you, and there should have been. Was she making a request or issuing an order? Was my patronage of that particular store appreciated or should I have gone to one of the other three grocery stores down the street, instead?
We may not always notice the magic words when they are there, but it is clearly obvious when they are not. Basic, common courtesy does make a difference.