Experience The Difference

I'll admit that it is my pet peeve. But the difference was so obvious. We arrived at a B & B after an intense week of work and long day of travel and were ready for a little down time. The first comment I heard was that "we took the wrong path and didn’t follow his directions" to this secluded little lodge hidden in the off-roads of the Colorado mountains. Once we settled in we made our way down to the dinner area. While waiting to enter the rustic dinning room, we met a nice couple from another state. We enjoyed visiting with them and were looking forward to learning more about their lives over a nice relaxing dinner. That didn’t happen. When we tried to sit at the same table (it just was the four of us eating dinner) we were told emphatically "No, that was not possible". We made the best of it by leaning around our table and theirs to continue our what was now an awkward situation. The checklist of do's and don'ts continued throughout our stay. The accommodations and food were fine, the view spectacular, but the customer service was severely lacking. It felt like we were staying in a rule-laden environment that actually produced stress. 
We made our way to the next B & B about an hour away and were met with a warm welcome;the owners were flexible, friendly and made us feel at home. The accommodations and food were excellent but the kindness of the owners made our experience one to remember. 
It is important for us to remember that the experience we create for those within our circle of influence speaks volumes about our leadership. Creating an environment of trust, communication and respect, is our responsibility as leaders. It begins with how we treat those we love and care about in our personal lives and it saturates to the work place. The most important task we have as leaders is to create an experience that allows others to grow and develop. Allowing rules and regulations to substitute for leadership will yield a toxic, legalistic environment in our homes and at work. 
We visited two similar venues and had entirely different experiences... guess which B & B we will recommend to others? 
Determine to create an experience that fosters flexibility, kindness and respect. You will find that your influence will increase and consequently you will make a difference!