The next time you walk into a store, a restaurant, or another business, ask yourself: Does the person go out of his or her way to treat me differently than everyone else? Do I feel better leaving than when I came in? Was I recognized as an individual?

While so many businesses strive to treat all people exactly the same in an attempt to achieve fairness and equality, this can actually end up being a disservice to the consumer. Let me explain…

We all want to be recognized and treated as an individual. Regardless of our status at work, where we live, what restaurants we frequent, or concerts we attend, we are unique. We also work hard to achieve the recognition we all feel we deserve. And in the attempt to treat people fairly, consumers are being robbed of the very thing that we all need – recognition for the individuals we are. Our unique characteristics need to be celebrated, not masked and ignored.

While I realize I’m asking for a lot for a business to take the extra time to recognize me, cater to my needs, and respond to me in a way that I appreciate, it’s not asking to do the impossible. And I think it’s time that consumers start demanding and expecting more. Maybe we should all start with asking this of our financial organization…where would you fall on their list of priorities?