Fifty First Dates

The movie, 50 First Dates, starring Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler, is billed as a romantic comedy. But I see it as a business movie.

In the film, Sandler’s character, Henry, and Barrymore’s character, Lucy, meet one day and have a great time. However, the next day Lucy doesn’t remember Henry, due to a memory problem that erases the previous day’s memories each night. So, their relationship has to start anew each day.

This is just what it’s like to do business with most companies. Aren’t there stores in which you’ve shopped for years, that still greet you with an impersonal, “May I help you?” as if you’re entering for the first time? How many restaurants remember that you don’t like pickles on your burger, from one visit to the next? Why do I need to repeat my customer service problem to successive AT&T operators?

So many things that seem outlandish in real life, such as a person not remembering yesterday, are taken for granted in business. More convinced than ever: The best business practices reflect the basic truths of everyday life.

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