A friend’s family company manufactures customized products. A customer called to say that delivery of his order by Friday was critical. The receptionist checked, then replied that standard delivery should arrive Thursday. On Thursday, only two of five boxes arrived. Unhappiness ensued.
Neither the receptionist or shipping manager had viewed this as a problem for them to solve. My friend assembled his team for a role-playing exercise. “How does our customer feel?” “How might we meet future deadlines?” They began to get it.
A manager who can teach colleagues to solve problems makes them better and makes customers happier.