Cinderella Story do Happen!

As the President of the Global Speakers Federation, I was delighted to attend & participate in the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers (CAPS) Convention in Halifax, last December. This brought me to the Marriott Halifax Harbourfront Hotel & Suites.

Prior to my career as a professional speaker and executive coach, I have worked for many years with Marriott International in Asia Pacific. It is here that I learnt about the Marriott’s Core Values – Spirit to Serve philosophy.

I was indeed happy to see the “Spirit to Serve” being brought to life by Judith, one of the banquet servers who was part of the banquet team during the Convention.

Judith was approachable, friendly and was always ready to help when it comes to delighting her guests from a service perspective. She has worked in the hospitality industry for 53 years (28 as a banquet server).

I find her to be a real gem as a true service ambassador in delivering unique & memorable experiences for her guests. And she enjoys doing it! It was not a job for her. it was her way of life. Her genuine smile readily radiant the people she interacts with.

I later found out that even though she has served so many people in the course of her career (including dignitaries, celebrities and royalties), Judith at 67 years old, has never had the chance to attend a Gala Dinner or a President’s Ball herself.

This led to a group of leaders and speakers to show our appreciation to Judith by inviting her to the Convention’s President Gala Dinner. It was a formal black tie event. It was amazing to see the leaders stepping in to get approval from the hotel for her to attend. Others took Judith shopping and sponsored the outfit and the accessories as she has no special clothes or shoes for such an event.

When Judith showed up during the President Gala Dinner, everyone was so happy that she could attend. She was literally transformed into a Cinderella for the evening. It was really Judith’s night to savor and remember. The incredible appreciation shown by everyone was truly overwhelming. I was so happy for her. She truly lived the Spirit to Serve philosophy and was Serving it Forward. She was recognized for all her efforts.

This experience I had with Judith reinforced my belief on the Power to Serve it Forward. When you begin to do things for others willingly without expecting any in return, greater reward circles back to you in due time. “It is more blessed to give than to receive”, as the saying goes. And Cinderella story do happens.

What are your thoughts on this?