People of the Services. What service do they render?

Yesterday’s post from two retired officers of India’s armed forces set me thinking about the word ‘Service’. The armed forces are called the services and their people are called as being in the Services.

Quite how does this tie up with our subject of Customer Service? For these people, the customer is the country and the service that they render is the most expensive that is possible – their very lives.

In the Indian context, they have been absolutely professional and unlike out neighbors, have not interfered with the country’s governance. They have fought on behalf of our country on a number of occasions and have proved their mettle time and again. They have fought conventional wars, guerilla wars, against insurgents and terrorists and on extremely difficult terrains in the most hostile climatic conditions.

They have SERVED.

Are we, as their customers happy with the service that they have rendered to us? How can we express our appreciation to them for the service that they have extended and continue to extend?