Inspiring Insights from Chick-fil-A’s Dan Cathy

AUTHOR:

Chris Stone


Summary of highlights from National Christian Foundation event

On June 21, 2012, Chick-fil-A President and Chief Operating Officer, Dan T. Cathy, shared some valuable professional, personal and spiritual insights as a leader of one of America’s most successful private companies at a Marketplace Matters event in Raleigh, North Carolina.

This breakfast event, held at Hope Community Church, brought together an audience of 1,500 people and offered the unique opportunity to hear directly from a key leader of a company that “walks the talk” and daily carries out its commitment to the biblical call to good stewardship of the resources to which it has been entrusted as a corporate entity.

At Chick-fil-A, every customer matters, and the call to “go the second mile” in all circumstances infuses every level of the company’s operations.

Wish you could have been there?

If you missed this annual event, check out these highlights on Chick-fil-A’s biblically-based corporate stewardship – inspiring insights that can be successfully applied to any retail setting and which will yield a harvest of high customer retention and good will.

Whether Dan’s message resonates with you personally or whether it matches your worldview, it definitely resonates with Chick-fil-A’s many loyal customers.  The resonance doesn’t necessarily mean they share Dan’s faith and worldview, but it does meet their needs and desires as a human being and consumer.  Perhaps it will resonate with your customers as well.

Top 30 Dan Cathy insights:
1.    Work is a calling based on the unique gifts God entrusts to each person.
2.    Life isn’t segmented, it’s amalgamated.  How can we live out our Christian faith in all aspects of our life?
3.    We’re called to see work as worship.
4.    Seek to discover God’s purpose for you in the context of your workplace.  Maximize your influence by serving God in the workplace.
5.    There is no divide between the sacred and secular.
6.    Life is a full-time ministry. Chick-fil-A is a full-time ministry.
7.    Chick-fil-A’s purpose:  to glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to them, and to have a positive influence on everyone who they come into contact with.
8.    Make all your customers feel welcome – not just the members of a particular group.
9.    External customer service begins with internal customer service.
10.    Serving others is what brings meaning, joy and purpose to life.
11.    Go the extra mile:  “If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles.” (Matthew 5:41, NIV)
12.    Go the extra mile:  Deliver beyond what your customer has paid for and see how it affects them and those around them.
13.    Go the extra mile:  Engage in other people’s lives.  Every person has a story.  Jesus gives us instructions about how we should minister to them.
14.    Go the extra mile:  When it’s raining, meet your customers in the parking lot with an umbrella and walk them inside.
15.    People are starved for honor, dignity and respect.  Go beyond the functional level and connect with customers on the emotional level.
16.    Restaurant is from the French meaning restoration.
17.    He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.
18.    We can't fix our customers problems but we can help them cope with a few moments of refreshment.
19.    Good service not only affects the recipient, but also those around who witness it.
20.    The handshake of the host affects the taste of the roast.
21.    Are your managers the kind of people you want your son or daughter to work for?
22.    When the rate of external change is greater than the rate of internal change, then disaster is imminent.
23.    Don’t let your cell phone become more important than your Bible.
24.    Don’t become more focused on listening to great business leaders than listening to the great leader of life – Jesus Christ.
25.    Hide your Bible in your pocket until it is hidden in your heart.
26.    Walk in that proper daily balance between the call of the world and the call of God upon your life.
27.    The first 40 hours of a new employee's work experience are what shape their view of the company.
28.    There is value, dignity and honor in working.  Cathy’s 91-year-old father – Chick-fil-A Founder, Chairman and CEO, S. Truett Cathy – still comes to work every day.
29.    Don’t think quarter-to-quarter, but decade-to-decade and generation-to-generation.
30.    Successful brands are the ones that can tell their story the most effectively.



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