Every single time I finish a conversation with my client and friend, Peter, he always asks me, “Is there anything that I can do for you?”

A simple question, yet a powerful message that says to me that this person really cares and wants to help me.

Peter has always gone above and beyond to help me and others.  If a same day delivery needs to be made from his company (he’s the owner) in Baltimore to Richmond, Peter will drive down himself and make the delivery.  When Krista and I moved to Boulder over the summer, we woefully underestimated how much stuff we had to move.  Peter helped us by dropping off shipping boxes, picking up our full boxes and then shipping them through his company.

Peter is a “Fred.” He is one of those rare individuals out there who goes “above and beyond” to help other people.  In the business world, this means delivering exceptional customer service.

In his book The Fred Factor, author Mark Sanborn begins with the story of his postman, Fred, who cheerfully introduces himself to Sanborn the day Sanborn moves into his new home.  Upon learning that Sanborn travels frequently, Fred suggests that Sanborn give him a copy of his schedule so that he (Fred) can hold is mail because “burglars often watch for mail building up in a box.”  Fred later drops a UPS package that had been incorrectly delivered to a neighbor’s address.  What exceptional service!

Sanborn then lays out “The Fred Principles,” which can apply to both personal and professional interactions as follows:

Principle 1: Everyone makes a difference. We can all choose to be exceptional.

Principle 2: Success is built on relationships. If you have a relationship with your customer or your service provider, then then service becomes personalized.

Principle 3: You must continually create value for others, and it doesn’t have to cost you a penny. Hopefully, you’re finding value by reading this.  You can do little things like giving a compliment, offering to help a neighbor, etc. that create value for others.

Principle 4: You can reinvent yourself regularly.  Every morning, we all wake up with a clean slate.  Why not choose be exceptional each day?

What a powerful way to live a more meaningful life by helping and providing exceptional service to others!

Who are the “Fred’s” in your life?

Are you a “Fred?”  If not, why not?!?

If you’re looking for a relatively quick read that may just inspire you to be exceptional (or ELITE), I recommend The Fred Factor.

Live life richly and without regret!


David B. Glover, MS, CSCS
Author of Full Time and Sub-Nine: Fitting Iron Distance Training into Everyday Life

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