What it Means to Go the Extra Mile

Annie Paquette
April 09, 2019

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“At Server Technology, we pride ourselves in going the extra mile for customers.  Whether it's our expert customer support staff talking you through technical issues or our vast library of product documentation, our goal is to help you Stay Powered, Be Supported and Get Ahead.”

That opening paragraph is directly from our website, and it is the starting point for this blog because we would like to spend some time talking about that little phrase, ‘the extra mile.’  In fact, we are going to talk about the origin of the phrase because it has special meaning especially in the new year, although in a surprising way.  Many people, including our web content professionals, use the phrase ‘going the extra mile’ with little thought to its origin. 

Where did it come from and where is this heading, you may ask?

While ‘going the extra mile’ is synonymous with customer service – doing what is right, putting in the extra effort to make sure the customer is in good hands, going above and beyond the call of duty. That means it dates back to the Roman Empire.  In that time, the Empire was vast, and all of its outposts were connected by a series of well-constructed roadways (bonus: that was also the origin of the term ‘civil’ engineering, i.e. not built for wartime).  Roman soldiers would use these highways to move from city to city to fulfill their duties.

At the time, if you were a Roman citizen, either by birth or through, uh, acquisition via conquest, you were required to carry, on request, whatever a Roman soldier had on his back.  If you were unlucky enough to meet a soldier on the road, that load was yours for exactly one mile.  A Roman soldier carried food, clothing, a large shield, and big, heavy weapons made out of iron.  This was not a light load, mind you, and our research clearly indicates that Kelty had not invented the chest strap just yet. 

So how about the extra mile?  The folks here on the other side of the Server Tech Customer Service Portal are completely down with the mission.  After we have hauled our body weight down a hot, rocky highway and started wondering how we would get home to provide for our own families, we are only warming up.  It is only at that point that the real customer service experience begins.  If we have to go an extra mile – or two, or three – to make sure our customers stay powered, are supported, and get ahead, then so be it.

In the spirit of starting of the new year right, and in the context of a phrase that has been around far longer than continuous power, let us simply say that, we are more than happy to go the extra mile for our customers.  And even if the extra mile didn’t originally have such good connotations, we do understand what it means to maintain a tradition of service. It remains our honor to bring you even better solutions to power your computing needs through this year and many more to come.

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