I am always on the lookout for purpose-driven, values-based organizations or individuals. You usually spot this by people’s actions, not by words hanging on a wall. However I witnessed both at a restaurant that I visited last week for the first time.

The Haymaker Restaurant Co. is a locally owned restaurant in Peoria, AZ. From the outside you would just think it is another local bar restaurant in a strip mall type area of Arizona. Once you go in however you notice a very unique atmosphere. Their walls are lined with wooden plaques that are mostly patriotic and Christian themed values. The picture is an actual photo of a wall in the restaurant.

Throughout the dining experience of burgers and salad my wife and I read all the words on the wall, and then started to quickly notice how friendly and caring the staff was. Our waiter Glenn was amazing.

He introduced himself, and when he found out we had never been to the restaurant before, he took plenty of time to share what he felt distinguished the restaurant from a food standpoint.

Being a couple of introverts, we usually don’t start conversations with our waiters (not proud of that, just a fact). However, after we had enjoyed an extremely delicious meal, I was compelled to ask Glenn about the history of the restaurant, and the background of all the words on the wall.

Glenn lit up when he had the opportunity to talk about the organization that he worked for. He proudly said that it is a locally owned restaurant. The owners embrace Christian and patriotic values and they are always on site on Saturday and Sunday mornings to greet customers. He went on to say that “We are a values-driven organization. We treat people how we would like to be treated when we go out to eat. EVERY TIME!”

He also shared how good their breakfast is, as well as their desserts. He promoted their bread pudding; letting us know that if we didn’t like it he will take it back. He urged us to come back and be sure to ask for him and he will wait on us again.

It is one thing to have your values and behaviors written on your website, or hanging in your lobby, but what is truly important is if people can recognize your values by your actions.

The Haymaker would not have had to have their values hanging all over their walls. It was clearly evident all employees embraced the values and felt like they were owners of the organization, taking unbelievable care of their customers. The fact that they were extremely busy well past the dinner hour is not a mystery. Customers come to The Haymaker to enjoy not only outstanding food, but to be treated extremely well. They are proud to share their values on the wall, as they know people will see them in their actions.

Are your values readily evident to those you interact with? If you were to print your values on your shirt, would they be in alignment with your daily actions? That is our challenge!


Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ. 1 Corinthians 11:1