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What It Means to Be "Five Star"

Posted by Rudy Miick on Feb 17, 2017 2:36:36 PM

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You know this list:

The New York City Ballet; the Bolshoi; Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre; Martha Graham Dance Company; The New York Philharmonic; The Boston Pops; The Cleveland Philharmonic; The Stones. They all have it.

Green Bay; Lakers; Heat; Yankees; John Wooden; Pat Summit; Pat Riley; all had and have it. The Samurai; Army Rangers; Seals; all have it. The Four Season’s, The St. George, The Breakers, The Little Nell have it.  

Wynton Marsalis, Paul Simon, James Taylor, Marian Anderson, Bette Midler, Leontyne Price; Spielberg, Ron Howard, Penny Marshall, Nora Ephron. While named as individuals, each and all also have teams that had and have it. Danny Meyer, the person who seems to have made the word “hospitality” common nomenclature with Union Square Hospitality Group, has it.

Far too often I hear folks use the phrase “5 star” and “hospitality” interchangeably. The words are not by default synonymous. Do not confuse 5 star and being hospitable as the same thing. Five star is being kind, yes, nice, no. Caring yes, soft no. Adaptable and fluid yes, unconscious, oblivious, or careless… never.  

What is ironic, perhaps, is that 5 star performance often times demands high training budgets, high end investment. However, 5 star hospitality can be as priceless as an attitude of care, of outreach, and connection. Added expense to any given company, team member, or guest, no. So regardless of budget, locale, business size, or sales volume, 5 star hospitality is an attitude and a choice.

A+, 5 star, defined or not, Passion, Purpose, Values and Vision align; Values are verbs and show up every day as behaviors in performance. More evidence of 5 star execution? Fiscal performance is as definitive and achieved as is stage performance.

The way one works and one lives is aligned in the world of 5 star performance. The persons and organizations named above are intentional, passionate, and purposeful no matter their entity, mission, or field. So, too, any one of us stepping into this world choose to play here. Nothing less than awake, astute, and conscious is acceptable.

The irony is that this conscious effort leads to unconscious competence and mastery. At mastery, focus shifts to the times the shot, step, or mark is missed. On a miss there is instant "awake-ness" to re-center, to re-balance back into “flow.” The cycle time to re-center is close to instant in 5 star.    

More so, performance is relentless and demanding. Performance excellence is data based in each. Good enough isn’t. At the same time, each player has the other’s back. The choice to be fearless is not the same as being stupid. The opposite is true; love and purpose wins over fear.

BE-ing Values Driven is not soft or mushy. Performance is measured and met. Not one entity listed above is perfect. At the same time, each is diligent, hard to get into, AND has a waiting line for ANY opportunity to get in.

With 5 star performance, smiles show up under pressure and at the completion of every event. And performance is only as good as the weakest player.  

Make no mistake, 5 star “hospitality” is equally relentless. Five star is simple really, it's just not easy. Like every other entity named above, excellence is in the details, and each player, each team, the whole experience is held to exceedingly high standards.

Hospitality at this level is not to be confused with a dysfunctional family being “nice” to a visitor for a hand full of moments. Five Star IS 5 star because performance is defined and each of us as players choose to live every moment in the practice that got us here.

Join me here if you will. It’s a choice. 

Get a closer look at what it takes to be Five Star.

"Five Star" comes down to company culture for so many reasons. To get a closer look at how to create and implement a company culture that expresses your values, take a look at our Company Culture Tips Sheet.

Company Culture Creation Tips Sheet from Miick


Topics: Performance, Hospitality, Passion, Purpose & Values