[December 8, 2016] Senior leaders are big believers in making their core values known to all. And the closer those values are to the traditions in that society, the easier those core values will be accepted. Wawa, like any organization that has had success over an extended period of time; and can be found with employees who adhere closely to them.
Having just moved to the state of New Jersey, about two hours south of Brooklyn, New York, I quickly found a store open 24/7 that practiced great customer service. Wawa Inc. is a chain of convenience stores located along the East Coast of the United States and operates in Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Florida, and of course New Jersey.
I visited a few of them before during my travels to military units in the area but had not thought much about those stores as a success story in leadership. The six core values of Wawa Inc. are1:
- Value people
- Delight customers
- Embrace change
- Do things right
- Do the right thing
- Have a passion for winning
Any Wawa employee can tell you about these six core values and the reason for Wawa’s existence; which is to “simplify our customers’ daily lives.” This particular list of core values does have a lot of overlap with other successful companies that I’ve highlighted in theLeaderMaker.com but you can tell their intense commitment to customer service is beyond most others similar stores and organizations.
To find out more about Wawa, its past CEO Howard Stoeckel and contributer Bob Andelman wrote a book called The Wawa Way: How a Funny Name and Six Core Values Revolutionized Convenience, 2014. The book is also a good primer on how to motivate employees to concentrate on the needs of their customers. Good book and recommended.
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