Here’s Why My Cat Can Never be a Customer Service Leader


A touch of independence mixed with patience, possessing a definite superiority complex and territorial.  These are some characteristics associated with the common house cat.  But what if we in the customer service industry held these same traits dear to our heart?

customer service leader

My cat is not responsible for anyone other than herself.  She wakes when she wants, at least not until she hears me rustle in the kitchen, and seems to not have a care in the world.  But we have employees that answer to us. They look to us for direction and we must coach and council those that fail to abide by established norms.

Once we are independent of others our team will fail because of lack of leadership and poor cooperation with fellow coworkers.

We can’t sit in our big comfy chair so sovereign in our beliefs that we hold no expectation to assist others.

Cats aren’t team players.

Another cat trait is acting as if they are superior to others, even their owners.  Indifference is the buzzword most apropos.  “Who cares what you’re doing, I’m just staying here”, your cat has told you many times.  Try as you might but unless your pockets are full of catnip, she’s not moving.

But what about your customer?  You can’t use the same measure to decide the importance of your customer’s actions.  When your customer is “in store” your expectations are to tend to their needs, whether or not they hold the human version of catnip…money!

Even a small sale is better than none, but not for your cat.

Ever bring a second cat into the established home of a mature cat?  It’s not a pretty sight.  The sounds and torment doled-out pale in comparison to the infighting between two adversaries for no other reason than they occupy the same space.  Cats are very territorial and have little intent on sharing.

Can you take this same approach to a new member of your team?  Of course not.  HR would have a field day with you.

But why would you squabble with a new employee?  Is it fear of someone new?  Or of change?  What about losing your power or control over the existing members of your team since you are the established de facto leader?

You cat has already proven she is not suited for customer service, let alone leadership. But what about you?

A true customer service leader gives of him/herself, content in the actions of service to another. Click To Tweet

The customer must be your focus, the customer must take the prize and the customer must be sure that you appreciate their business above all else.

Self righteousness and independence won’t build a business, nor provide great service.

Robert K. Greenleaf first coined the phrase “servant leader” in 1970 with the publication of his classic essay, The Servant as Leader, where he writes:

“The servant-leader is servant first… It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead.”

Unless your cat is leading the pack on the Serengeti Plains of Africa, she is no leader and especially not a servant.  She is only concerned of her whims and has an appetite second to only a gourmet.

True customer service leaders understand the slow and methodical aspects of service where each step is in harmony with each other.  All coworkers and departments are responsible for the proper execution of your product or service.  Where one fails the others do too.

Your cat?  Well, she only understands one thing…”keep my food dish full and cat box empty!”

Leave a comment below and add to the discussion, thanks.


  1. He Steve,

    The ideal customer service is all about self sacrifice. The needs and wants of the customer is always a priority. This is what is lacking with the cat. Your analogy of the cat is true.

    I have a cat that exhibits these features and it is interesting to learning more about how they compare to an ideal customer service!

  2. Hey Steve,

    I guess any customer service leader that desires to be productive must not behave like a cat.

    The traits of a cat as you have described here are ‘selfish’ and this is not what a leader in the customer service sector should have.

    I am not a lover of cat but I have learned a great lesson from this post. Especially on the fact that Cats are very territorial and have little intent on sharing. 😉

  3. Hi Steve,

    Its revealing how you masterly compared the traits of a cat to that of a customer service leader.

    It is obvious that the customer service leader is far from being selfish like the cat.

    I completely agree with this: “A true customer service leader gives of him/herself, content in the actions of service to another.”

    Every business must, therefore, endeavor to hire the service of a customer service leader that seeks for the welfare of the audience without condition!

  4. Hey Steve,

    Indeed, if these are the traits of cats then they are not worth being customer service leaders.

    These traits that center on ‘selfishness’ are not what customer service leaders should have.

    Acceptable customer service ensures that the customer gets satisfaction first before any other thing!

    Thanks for bringing to mind this comparison!

  5. Hi Steve,

    Customer server leader is he/she who meets the needs of others and at the same time promote brands quality with his/her skill

    If the intending leader of customer service will understand what it takes to bring satisfaction always to the audience then it would be cool exploiting his skill and experience.

    Of course, cats don’t have these qualities!

  6. Hey Steve,

    Hmm! You are right about the traits of cats. Felines are domineering creatures that seek to protect their territories.

    A customer service leader must be altruistic in all his/her dealings. This ensures he has a mark or quality that is endearing to those who would pay for his/her services!

    Thanks for sharing this post. It reminds one of what it take be a good customer service!

  7. Hmm! Indeed, cats are self righteous creatures. However, this trait does not augur well when working as a customer service leader.

    I completely agree with this “Self righteousness and independence won’t build a business, nor provide great service.”

    Every proactive customer service must keep this words to heart so they can eventually produce the best customer service experience!

  8. Hello Steve,

    This is a funny post but made a lot of sense. Cats are certainly not responsible for anyone else but themselves.

    By the way, I like the image you used in this post, very creative way of showing how cats think or know they are superior to others.

    But in the end, we still love our cats, don’t we? 🙂

  9. When I read the headline of your article my first thought was about a joke that we told talking about herding cats.

    If you have ever tried to herd cats you would have a better understanding of that comment.

    This was a very good review of what it takes to take care of your customers and partners in this business

    Thank you,