Major news stories have reported numerous accounts of poor customer interactions between the airline staff and customers.
Flying in 2017 is not the same as 1977….of course the numbers are significantly different….more people….full aircraft…..perhaps less social courtesy than were present years ago.
As in many large customer centered businesses…..each individual customer is insignificant to the large numbers that pass through the boarding gate or front door. To an airline or a Walmart….there will always be another customer to replace a dissatisfied customer.
If an airline (or any business) does not have a thorough understanding of the importance of the customer interactions….it will always have poor customer relations and more unsettling incidents.
From Seth Godin:
“Repainting your house the same color it already was feels like a waste. It’s a lot of effort merely to keep things as they are.
But if you don’t do it, time and entropy kick in and the house starts to fade.
The same can be said for 1,000 elements of your organization, including your relationships with customers, staff, suppliers and technology. The way you approach your market, the skill you bring to your craft, the culture in your organization—it constantly needs another coat of paint.
Rust never sleeps.”
Several years ago, a colleague and I presented leadership workshops….primarily to get the leaders and their organization to rethink purpose and mission and also to understanding a changing environment. Were we successful?….not really. The organization has continually declined in numbers and for the most part has never reimagined itself.
One of our suggestions (similar to Seth’s repaint) was to start from an empty slate. What was the organization’s reason for existence? Why does it exist? Where was the market? In some cases, the purpose might not change. In others, there was a necessity to completely revisit the purpose and mission. Easy to say….hard to do.
Often leadership was reluctant to change….subsequently some faded away.