A Random Act of MAGIC® Can Do a World of Good
by Diane Berenbaum
"Do your little bit of good where you are; it's those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world."
Wherever there is another human being, there is an opportunity for selfless service—the kind of service that goes beyond the ordinary or just what's expected. It's a helpful gesture that can put a smile on someone's face and leave him with a newfound understanding of what great service is all about.
Random acts of MAGIC can be very simple; even small steps can make a big impact on someone's day and, perhaps, their perception of the world. When you choose to serve another in an unexpected way, you may find that it will not only enrich the experience of the receiver, but it will enrich your life as well.
I'd like to share two stories where people chose to do the unexpected to help someone else. I hope these stories open your minds, and your hearts, and encourage you to practice Random Acts of MAGIC.
- Archbishop Desmond Tutu
Extra Help During the Holidays
One of our friends, Meg Reilly, shared her very memorable experience with Florence of EZ Book Clips who went "above and beyond" during the busiest time of year.
"It was the holiday season, and I came across these inexpensive but cool book clips while searching on the Internet. They came in many different colors, so I decided to order some as stocking stuffers for my family. Like me, many of them enjoy reading hands-free while on an exercise machine, cooking, working on a project, etc. So I shelled out $27.90 for six items. The price included shipping and I got to pick any six colors I liked—pretty good deal, I thought.
"I received an immediate email response acknowledging my payment. A busy week went by and I hadn't given it another thought until I received a second e-mail from the vendor. Here's what it said:
Thank you for your order. We shipped it last week, but it just came back today because the address label came off in the mail. I could tell it was yours by your specific color choices. So we will mail your order out again tomorrow. You'll have your book clips by the end of next week. I apologize for the delay, but am glad I was able to sort out the orders and find that it was yours that was returned. I'm packing in an extra book clip for you as an apology for the delay.
"I thought, 'Wow! That's MAGIC!' Florence could have stuffed that ripped address label back into another bag and just shipped off those book clips without so much as a word to me. I would never have known the difference. But she chose to inform me of the delay (of which I was unaware), figure out that it was my order from my color choices, repack it, apologize, and throw in a free clip! Who knew that $27.90 could buy such excellent customer service!"
A Good Deed for a Stranger
Our associate,Steve Loso, decided to practice a Random Act of MAGIC when he found a lost item near our office. Here is his story.
"I was crossing the street one day when I found a large, black binder in the middle of the road. I asked my associate, Lilli, if we had any visitors to our office that morning who might have dropped a binder. She said no, but offered to try to find out who the appointment book belonged to.
"Much to my surprise, she was able to track down the owner of the book. When I called him, he was thrilled that someone had found it. He told me that the book had been stolen out of his car and evidently discarded on the road right in front of our office.
"He offered to pay to have it shipped back, but once I learned that he lived in the same town as me, I offered to return the book to him that evening. He said he would be out that night and suggested it would be too much trouble for me to return the book the next morning. I assured him it would be my pleasure, and we arranged a time for me to deliver it to him the next day.
"He was totally overwhelmed with the effort that had been made for a total stranger. I was happy to see the look of relief on his face and felt great that I helped someone in need."
Make a Commitment to Practice Random Acts of MAGIC
These are just a couple of examples of people taking the time and caring enough to do something extra for someone else. Perhaps these stories triggered one of your own pleasant memories, or sparked your interest in being more proactively MAGIC yourself. Let the best of your humanity shine. Open your eyes for these opportunities, act when the spirit moves you, and make a commitment to do a random act of MAGIC for someone else—every month, every week, or every day.
Share Your Stories and Inspire Others
As George Eliot said, "Our deeds determine us as much as we determine our deeds." So, join us in bringing more MAGIC to this world and help us spread the word! Send me your stories and experiences—just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And, encourage others you know to practice random acts of MAGIC too. I look forward to hearing from you.
Diane Berenbaum is a long-time contributor and former editor of the MAGIC Service Newsletter. She has more than twenty-five years of experience as a consultant, coach, and facilitator. Diane is the co-author of How to Talk to Customers: Create a Great Impression Every Time with MAGIC® .