Everything’s Great, But Could I Get That Breakfast I Ordered?


My hotel breakfast server was very friendly. It took a while for him to come over after I was seated, but when he did, he was all smiles and exuberance.

I ordered eggs, coffee, and a smoothie (thanks, Starwood). “That’s a great idea!” the server said, and seemed genuinely happy about my order.

Over the next twenty minutes, he came back several times to check on me. There was just one problem: my breakfast never arrived.

“How is everything so far?” he asked.

Not sure yet, I don’t have my food.

Five minutes later:

“You okay over here?”

Well, the tap water is great. Any chance the coffee might come soon?

The host was passing by, so I made eye contact and she realized I didn’t have anything. Five minutes later, I was all set—and then I never saw the friendly server again. Whoops.

To be clear, it wasn’t exactly a crisis. I ate food the day before, and presumably there would be another meal coming later in the day.

Eventually the coffee showed up, 15 minutes later, and finally I got my eggs. The smoothie never made an appearance, which wasn’t a huge deal at that point. I needed to leave and head out to begin my day.

Thinking about it later, I realized the server got everything right except the main thing. He was prompt and friendly. Unfortunately, though, he forgot the breakfast.

And that’s what I’ve been thinking about as I consider the changes in our online world and prepare to launch a big new project. I think I’m doing everything right, but am I missing the main thing?

For eight years and counting, the main thing has been you, that person on the other side of the screen. It’s not my job to bring you breakfast, which is good because I’d be much worse than the guy who forgot to get my coffee. But it is my job to be helpful and interesting. You read this blog or otherwise follow me for a reason, and I hope you continue to find it worth your time.

I’ll have a lot of posts for the book over the next few weeks, because I believe in its message and want to get it out to the world. But in the end, it will only be successful if you, that person on the other side of the screen, cares enough to a) buy it, and b) tell other people about it.

I guess we’ll find out very soon. Can I get some coffee?


Image: Sergey

Subscribe now and you’ll get the best posts of all time.