Christopher Columbus – First Mystery Shopper

sailingIn honor of the holiday weekend, we share a few facts about Christopher Columbus (and how they relate to mystery shopping).

Despite stories to the contrary, Christopher Columbus did not set out across the ocean in 1492 to prove the earth was round. The ancient Greeks had already done so.

Neither was Columbus the first to cross the Atlantic – Leif Eriksson had done that almost 500 years before.

Christopher Columbus was curious. He wanted to discover a western sea route to Asia. He thought it was a much shorter route than it actually turned out to be – but he was able to return to King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella and report on his findings…kind of like what mystery shoppers do each day.

We thought it would be fun to see how his report of his assignment would read.

These are actual quotes from Christopher Columbus.

The PURPOSE of Columbus’s assignment:

For this purpose I determined to keep an account of the voyage, and to write down punctually every thing we performed or saw from day to day, as will hereafter appear.


For the execution of the voyage to the Indies, I did not make use of intelligence, mathematics or maps.


Following the light of the sun, we left the Old World.

After having dispatched a meal, I went ashore, and found no habitation save a single house, and that without an occupant; we had no doubt that the people had fled in terror at our approach, as the house was completely furnished.

The air soft as that of Seville in April, and so fragrant that it was delicious to breathe it.

Their houses are all built in the shape of tents, with very high chimneys.

I saw a boy of the crew purchasing javelins of them with bits of platters and broken glass.

These people are very unskilled in arms… with 50 men they could all be subjected and made to do all that one wished.

His overall impression:

Riches don’t make a man rich, they only make him busier.

The next time you are on assignment, think of the lengths Christopher Columbus went to ‘write’ up his report! Makes your shop seem a bit easier, doesn’t it?

Tell us which historical figure you could relate mystery shopping to? Stop by our Facebook page and comment!



About Market Viewpoint

Market Viewpoint offers comprehensive mystery shopping services, complete customer service audits, employee and customer surveys, customer focused marketing strategies, and customer service training to help you improve your customer service and outshine your competition.
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