An interesting experience recently in a restaurant in Valencia. The waitress asked questions like “Everything ok?”, “The food’s good?” on five occasions. It seemed excessive. Fortunately, I have learned not to feel embarrassed if I need to say “No” (it wasn’t the case).

What struck me was, after paying, she left two cards, one the restaurant, the other Trip Advisor, with her name written on it. What was her purpose?: to give superlative service or get an excellent rating in Trip Advisor?

I didn’t feel comfortable concluding it was the second. You might say “So what? You got excellent service because the waitress was working hard for you to give her a good rating.” Yes and no.

What are the values and subsequent behaviours that come from the first purpose? And those from the second?

My conclusion? If, in any human interaction, the aims are not 100% aligned, you’ve got problems.

For example, what’s the purpose of a training department?

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