After talking about Nokia, I chanced upon this post and thought about it. Apart from a mild ache from actually thinking, I also realized that I had known this service philosophy all along, just not so eloquently put.
When providing a service, or putting up a show, the client or audience should not be aware of the background work being done. It should be so seamless that they are totally immersed in the experience. Of course most people are simply clueless or oblivious anyway.
Being a duck means:
"you simply have to be a duck. For all concerned, you are sailing along smoothly on top of the water while all along you are privately paddling like crazy underneath. To be anything less than a duck would be unprofessional. Whatever is going on in your life, it is irrelevant to this event, this moment, this bride and groom. Leave it at home, and be a duck." - Shelton Muller
The problem with being a successful aquatic avian, is that a lot of people think what you do is so easy and they tell you so openly or imply politely.
"It is very simple right? Doesn't take long"
"It is very small, shouldn't be expensive"
"Children are very easy right?"
"Even my child can do it!"
Each of those statement have the power to demoralize you, especially when you make the extra effort to maintain that calm seamless experience while things fall apart at the back.
So here is to all those special ducks out there, may your swim be uneventful.