The other day I called to complain about the phone service. A government department known for their lethargy and disinterest. Imagine my surprise when the lady was not only polite but promised to have the problem rectified. I found myself relating the incident to many and later it struck me that it was disheartening that the pleasant customer service had taken me by surprise. Shouldn't this be the norm? I am baffled when I find a banner stating 'Customer Service Week' in a bank or a super market. Shouldn't it be customer service all the year round?
Forget organisations. At a personal level I find that simple courtesies seem to be a thing of the past. How many instances are there when you find someone trying not to meet your eye to avoid greeting you. Do men offer a lady or an elderly person a seat in a crowded bus? How many people hold open a door for others?
At public places we are sometimes shoved aside without the polite excuse me. At a show people talk loudly and do not put off their mobiles even after several requests. Niceties like thank you, please and excuse me are terms that seem to be forgotten . People jump the queue. Children are allowed to run and throw tantrums in public places while the parents do nothing about them.
Pleasantries are not about the other person you are dealing with. Whether they deserve it is not important. It should be a natural behaviour on one's part. It is a reflection of who you are, and how you were raised. And it is a trait that is worth passing on to your children.