No matter what type of organization you belong to, you do have customers. Whether or not your customers pay you for your services they are still your customers – and ideally you will treat them with the same excellence that you would if they were paying you $1000 per hour.
If you are in education, you have layers of customers. The students, the parents, the community, the alumni – all are your customers. The students need an excellent education so that they eventually have the knowledge and ability to contribute to the work force, earn decent wages and are able to raise a family in comfort. The parents need their children to be well educated so that eventually they can move out of the home and be on their own, without the parents having to financially support them any longer. The community needs excellent education so that it has a productive work force which attracts investment in the community. And the alumni need the education institution to remain strong so that their diploma continues to have legitimate meaning.
If you are in a nonprofit you have customers. The people to whom you are providing services are all your customers. If your nonprofit is to survive you still need to do everything you do with excellence, otherwise those who use your services may decide that they will stop using your services, even though your services do not cost them anything. Then whoever is providing your funding may decide to stop providing funding to your nonprofit.
If you are in government you have customers. The citizens are your customers. All you need do is look at the international news these days to see what is happening to governments who decided long ago (so they thought) that they didn’t have any customers.
And yes, even athletic teams have customers – their fans and the community. The individual players, and the teams in general, need to be role models for their fans, especially for the young children. The first day the players put on that uniform that forever changes them to a role model – and they must forever forsake any bad habits that they may have had in the past, both on the playing field and in society.
So no matter what service your organization provides, it does have customers. And those customers will expect you to provide the same excellent service as they would if they were paying for that service.