In the days before GPS, when a good map was our most important travel tool and we were at an age when traversing the interior of France through the mountains of the Massif Central seemed like a fun adventure, we made our first trip to Chateau de Sanse. This beautiful restored ruin is in the middle of nowhere and the last two hours of the nerve-wracking trip had been on skinny back roads with an occasional French farmhouse giving light to the otherwise desolate landscape. We arrived at around 9:00 pm. exhausted, hungry and more than a little stressed. The owner and builder of this fabulous place met us as we pulled into the parking lot and said, “You must be the Perkins’. Welcome. Let me take your bags.” Once inside he said, “You look tired. Why don’t you sit here and I’ll get you a drink and then we’ll sort out your room. What would you like? Are you hungry?” Deb and I just looked at him like “Are you for real?” We had never been treated like that and we were in shock. Who was this guy?
Last month I was with Mark again at his new place – a wonderful B&B just outside of St Emilion – and as we sat with his family for dinner we were remembering that first night. Mark said, “hospitality is the easiest business in the world because all you have to do is make people happy.” WHAT? That’s the craziest thing I’ve ever heard. It’s not easy for me – and I’m guessing it’s not easy for most of you. Making people happy seems like an impossible thing to do. But it’s easy for Mark. Mark is really good at serving people and for him hospitality is indeed really easy because he is good at it.
It comes easy to him so he is good at it, and he is good at it because it comes easy to him.
But Mark doesn’t value what he is good at and neither do most of us.
Because Mark thinks that serving people is easy he doesn’t value it the way he should. He doesn’t know that for the rest of us it’s really difficult and when we get great service – like we always do from Mark and Trish – we value it highly.
1. What don’t you value because you do it effortlessly?
2. What is the value of what you are great at?
3. How do you do that thing to it’s full potential?
4. How long will I stay at Mark and Trish’s next year?