Do you whistle while you work?


For the last few months I have been making much more use of public transport (more to follow in another blog post) and I am sure many of you have seen the coverage, photos and even videos of employees on the TTC (Toronto Transit Commission) subway and buses?

Certainly this type of coverage and negative online commentary is not good for a brand that is already under pressure to perform and who usually only ever gets coverage when there is negative news or a price hike.

In contrast the other day I was pleasantly surprised by who I now call "The Happy HSR Bus Driver" – an employee of the Hamilton Street Railway who cheerfully greeted every passenger as they boarded the bus, wished them a wonderful day and then proceeded to either whistle or sing as the bus carried on its route.

The atmosphere on the bus was noticeable, more smiling faces, people ready to talk to each other, everyone getting off and saying thank you. I now hope to get on his bus again.

His personal brand of cheerfulness transposed in to a feel good brand experience for everyone of the HSR. How much did it take him to do it? Could we all be making that little extra effort in our own jobs?

1 thought on “Do you whistle while you work?”

  1. Paul,
    As you’ll know, commuting on London’s underground (ie metro system) is one of the most uncomfortable, stressful and impersonal things you can do in rush hour. It’s warm, your packed like sardines and no one makes eye contact as they stay focussed on their blackberry/iPhones and newspapers.
    But there’s a train driver on the Northern Line who gives a witty running commentary over the train PA system as we pass through different parts of London and welcomes people as they join the train. I wouldn’t say that he’s some great comedian, – he’s simply being personable and cheerful whilst doing his job – but as no one else does it, he stands out.
    Most people only hear his voice for a few seconds of journey but it usually makes them smile, make eye contact with each other and maybe even speak to the person next to them.
    Maybe the green/sustainability movement should try and make all public transport staff more cheerful as a strategy to attract more people on the trains/buses!

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