Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Tale of a Hotel Clerk

One stormy night many years ago, an elderly man and his wife entered the lobby of a small hotel in Philadelphia. Trying to get out of the rain, the couple approached the front desk hoping to get shelter for the night.

"Could you possibly give us a room here?" the husband asked. The clerk, a friendly man with a winning smile, looked at the couple and explained that there were three conventions in town

"All of our rooms are taken," the clerk said. "But I can't send a nice couple like you out in the rain at one o'clock in the morning. Would you perhaps be willing to sleep in my room? It's not exactly a suite, but it will be good enough to make you folks comfortable for the night."

When the couple declined, the young man pressed on. "Don't worry about me; I'll make out just fine," the clerk told them. So the couple agreed.

As he paid his bill the next morning, the elderly man said to the clerk, "You are the kind of manager who should be the boss of the best hotel in the United States. Maybe someday I'll build one for you."

The clerk looked at the couple and smiled. The three of them had a good laugh. As they drove away, the elderly couple agreed that the helpful clerk was indeed exceptional, as finding people who are both friendly and helpful isn't easy.

Two years passed. The clerk had almost forgotten the incident when he received a letter from the old man. It recalled that stormy night and enclosed a round- trip ticket to New York, asking the young man to pay them a visit.

The old man met him in New York, and led him to the corner of Fifth Avenue and 34th street. He then pointed to a great new building there, a palace of reddish stone, with turrets and watchtowers thrusting up to the sky.

"That," said the older man, "is the hotel I have just built for you to manage."
"You must be joking," the young man said.
"I can assure you that I am not," said the older man, a sly smile playing around his mouth.

The old man's name was William Waldorf Astor, and the magnificent structure was the original Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. The young clerk who became its first manager was George C. Boldt.

This young clerk never foresaw the turn of events that would lead him to become the manager of one of the world's most glamorous hotels.

17 comments:

bayi said...

I knew of such a committed person in the local hotel industry. His commitment to the hotel and the customers were both excellent. He became a hotel manager in a small local hotel chain and the company and the customers benefited from his services. Unfortunately the chain being a local and a small one, the future wasn't very bright for him and he had to leave for another industry. There was a time when the hotel was full and a Singaporean couple appealed to him. Even though the hotel manager had his wife with him, he gave up his room and slept with his wife in his office. It's a pity he did not have the opportunity of meeting a local Waldorf Astor.

TIMOTHY-DALTON said...

superb hospitality indeed. it would be a rare find in malaysia, and if any, the clerk would rape the wife and then the "maid" next door. it now seems every tom, dick, and harry thieves just love raping "maid" she probably hunger for lust, attention, and some cunt.

oh! yes, Shah Rock Cunt!

if that clerk is not Pak Khalil Yaakob, then he has to be Ali Rustam. the "maid" would then obviously be Madam Hippo; not Jeanne lah!

RotiBhai said...

i read this article too from a magazine from india - "wisdom"

Jefus said...

Mav,

that was many years agao, nowadays,...

1. During the last 10 days, I have purchased approximately 59 million shares and share-equivalents of Yahoo

2. I have formed a 10-person slate which will stand for election against the current board

3. I have sought antitrust clearance from the Federal Trade Commission to acquire up to approximately $2.5 billion worth of Yahoo stock
Carl Icahn

Maverick SM said...

Bayi,

That's about human empathy; and may not relate to the job. It relates more to his humanistic characteristics.

Timothy-Dalton,

You don't seems to appreciate humanistic discourse?

RotiBhai,

Oh, ya, I must buy that magazine too.

Maverick SM said...

Jefus,

You so rich!!!

cakapaje said...

Hey bro,

Coming from you, I take this story as true, and am glad to have read it - it puts faith back into humanity...but not into our gomen. Thanks.

Jefus said...

the heart and soul of doing business is dead,...... Carl Icahn is in it only for money, he does not realize ( nor give two hoots ) that a corporate entity comprises of blood sweat, and people who had spent alot of time,..... empathy,.. people who actually do a business because they like the business.

KIMHO8 said...

Helpfulness is a good practice in our daily life.
We can find satisfaction simply by helping someone.
George C. Boldt wants his customers feel like home too.

Maverick SM said...

cakapaje,

Ya, humanity and empathy; that's the essence.

Jefus,

If you read the issues stated by Carl Icahn you will know that Yahoo shareholders are the losers for not selling the entity to Microsoft.

KIMHO8,

People management, empathy and caring are the essence.

toolan said...

Thanks for this inspiration piece, I will keep my finger cross that one day my "Waldof" will come along and send me a ticket to financial freedom.
But then again, what about the saying " Good guys always end up last?"......makes you wonder again right?
Actually, in my current state, dare not dream too much already, as long as everyone in the family is healthy and alright, can't asked for more right?

Jefus said...

ya but if MS took over Yahoo, the employees of Yahoo will be jettisoned, people are expendable..... for a price.

moo_t said...

Remind me of investment banker and fund manager that pray on people money to get bonus. Thus, the once "invincible" wall street sharks and croc collapse right in front of us.

Thus, come back of the good old day bricks and mortars business. :)

Maverick SM said...

Toolan,

I am sure you will be the Waldof one day not too distant away. Hope you will still visit me here thereafter.

Jefus,

You have a point; but business enterprise is about shareholders return on investment; lest we forget they are the ones who took the risk on investment.

Moo_t,

I believed in Brick & Mortar business model.

Purple Haze said...

According to snopes.com the story is "true but with embellishments". Please see http://www.snopes.com/glurge/waldorf.asp

Maverick SM said...

Purple Haze,

Thanks for the link and I have a better understanding of the story now.

Anonymous said...

in M'sia a bell boy became a rich, sleepy PM.