THURSDAY, JUNE 9: There are two items in the press today that merit comment. The first is the Government survey that found ‘rude staff’ in our stores to be a principal complaint among Bermuda’s retail customers. The second item was a Letter to the Editor from a visitor who described her experience with an ‘unhelpful’ bus driver.

I have no reason to believe these reports are not grounded in some level of truth and so I cite them to remind all of us of the need to be better on the job, to raise our game.

Bermuda is challenged on many fronts these days and it is essential if we are to perform better as a society that we do everything in our power to strengthen Bermuda’s competitiveness.

Some of the competitive challenges the island faces relate to issues that cannot be solved overnight, such as our high cost structures, regulatory impediments, etc. But there is one area that each of us can bring about immediate change and that is how we get along with our fellow citizens and our overseas customers.

We must never forget that Bermuda’s economy is service-based. Much depends on the attitude we project to people. If we are rude or unhelpful, our customers will go elsewhere. Such a result serves no constructive purpose, and it reminds us that we share a collective responsibility toward our fellow Bermudians. We are, after all, in this life together.

So this is an appeal for all of us to be the best we can be in our professional environments. What you do and how you do it is who you are. Take pride in what you do. Show courtesy, goodwill, kindness and respect.

There is a Biblical truth worth remembering: You will reap what you sow. 
If each of us does better, we are making it possible for all of us to do better, and for our island to do better.

It’s one way we can all help put Bermuda first.