There’s the Golden Rule: treat others the way you want to be treated.

And there’s the other Golden Rule: he who holds the gold makes the rules. In other words, those with the money are in power, i.e., your customers.

And then there’s the Platinum Rule: treat others the way they want to be treated.

We tend to apply these to the customer experience. As such, I prefer the Platinum Rule to the Golden Rule because the Platinum Rule is outside-in and more customer-centric. In a previous post from 2018, I wrote:

While the Golden Rule ignores the feelings of others and assumes that we all want to be treated the same way, the Platinum Rule recognizes that we don’t, that we want to be treated the way we want to be treated. It acknowledges that we all have different needs and want to be respected as individuals. It’s quite the improvement to the Golden Rule. It’s much more empathetic.

Clearly, both can – and should – apply to the employee experience, as well. But, I found this quote and wonder if we’d consider it the employee Platinum Rule.

If you treat an individual as he is, he will remain how he is. But if you treat him as if he were what he ought to be and could be, he will become what he ought to be and could be.

-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

There are many variations of this quote, but you get the gist with this version: People tend to rise to the expectations others have for them.

I believe this is a powerful leadership approach – one not used often enough. Employees want to learn, to grow, to be what they are meant to be come, but when they are stifled by their managers and/or leaders, by the culture, by the company in general, then it’s a toxic environment and not a place where growth is nurtured and celebrated. When leaders care about employees, when they treat them well and help them grow, when they treat them how they want to be treated, when they treat them as if they were what they could be, employees give back. Don’t forget that!

Excellence is the result of caring more than others think is wise, risking more than others think is safe, dreaming more than others think is practical, and expecting more than others think is possible. -Ronnie Oldham

Annette Franz, CCXP is an internationally recognized customer experience thought leader, coach, speaker, and author. She recently published her first book, Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business); it’s available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle formats. Sign up for our newsletter for updates, insights, and other great content that you can use to up your CX game.

Image courtesy of Pixabay.