In Service

If you're in business whether you were running your own, managing a large organization, or an employee diligently completing tasks, you have been faced with difficult situations.

Years ago, I was running my business. I saw enormous growth in a very short time.  With this growth, I had to make the difficult decision to increase rates to provide the same if not better service to my clients.  I explained this to my current clientele with the caveat they could finish out their current contracts however, their rates would increase the following month, by TWO DOLLARS.

Yes, just two dollars.

I had a client become irate.  They ran my name through the proverbial mud and rallied other clients to turn against me.  I was heartbroken. Infuriated. And I questioned if I had made the right decision.

Just a few months later, I learned this ex-client had been diagnosed with cancer.  I set the feelings of betrayal and hurt aside and created healthful meals to somehow help with the normal day to day burdens of life.

This is what I call IN SERVICE.

I am in service to those I meet.  This service provides top-notch customer experience but it is also my life’s motto for those I meet every day. I am in service to others no matter their actions or reactions (within the bounds I create for personal wellbeing and safety.)

This week I heard from Sanyin Siang who lovingly spoke of her mentor. Her mentor embedded in Sanyin’s heart,   “To serve is to live.”  

I couldn’t agree more.

I heard from Bruce Kasanoff who shared Viktor Frankl’s powerful words, “The meaning of life is to help others find the meaning of theirs.”

What would our workplace culture and lives look like purposefully pursuing this?

You may believe the position you hold doesn’t afford this type of viewpoint by which you can run your company or self.  In fact, you can and should.  

The ability to move past the ugliness and recognize every person we meet or manage are those we are in service to, the broader our reach, our impact, and ultimately the growth in our companies.

A common exercise for my clients is in visualizing their funeral with all those who will be in attendance. Then to imagine what those in attendance would say on their behalf.  A family member, close friend, coworker, and someone they’d only met briefly.

What would they say about you?

Would they lovingly declare your Machiavellian management style and your worth in millions of dollars?

Or, would they declare your service to others in creating a culture of shared vision and goals, inclusivity, alliance, and support?

“We may not witness our own eulogy, but we’re actually writing it all the time, every day.”  Ariana Huffington  

A most heedy question to ask yourself; are you in service to others or self?  Can you have a product AND a service?  I believe so.


Piper Harris is a Leadership Success coach, business owner, author, wife, and mom on a quest to coach women and women-led organizations into successful leadership. Whether women are leading in their homes, as an entrepreneur, or CEO. Piper believes every woman is called to lead.

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