Accounting & Auditing | Leadership / Management | Organizational Development | Training & CPE

What can FISH teach us about accounting?

Dsc09169I just got back from visiting Seattle and had to stop by the world-famous Pike Place Fish Market. It got me thinking about how we all can get into a trap of thinking our products and services are commodities and all that our customers (in our case members) care about is the price.

What about selling fish at a market? Is that a commodity?

I know the answer is a resounding "no." Just look at the pictures from their stall in the Pike Place Market in Seattle. Tell me why there was a long line of people crowding their stall and most of the other "exact same" fishmonger stalls had only a couple of people?

Dsc09171 This is the "flying fish" story that you may have seen on training DVDs or read in the book, FISH! It really is true that they do throw the fish. The first thing you notice, after the gathering crowd, is the energy and fun that they are having.

They also have incredible customer service and genuinely care about their customers. I was immediately engaged in a conversation with the guy pictured at left, who asked me how he could help ship my fish back to Maryland. They engage you in their playful actions. One threw a fish at the line of onlookers, causing everyone to jump. (Yes, it was a realistic but fake plastic fish.) No wonder these guys are world famous. Wouldn't the world be a much better place if we all really enjoyed our work like these guys?

Check out a video of the flying fish below, then go out today and "make someone's day!"

They boil it down to a very simple set of principles:

  1. Be there.
  2. Play.
  3. Choose your attitude.
  4. Make their day.

More resources:

Does this look like a commodity to you? What can you do to capture the energy and enthusiasm of your team to create an extraordinary customer experience? Can we bring the same energy and creativity back to our offices even if we don't have any fish?

Video courtesy of spinininseattle on YouTube.