Holy Moly. Even I can’t believe I’m writing more about how Southwest Airlines uses humor, levity and lightheartedness to improve their bottom line. I know it. And you know it. Humor + work = improved bottom line.
What amazes me is how United Airlines and the other struggling airlines are the only ones NOT learning from Southwest.
Corporate espionage would never be so easy: United should put a single employee on a Southwest flight, have them notice how the fun attitude of the employees translates to customer satisfaction, and then…. copy them! No cloak and daggers needed. It’s not even stealing. It’s just common sense.
I was just on an United flight and was chatting with a flight attendant about the safety announcements, and whether she thought humor was appropriate. I’m not at all sure what the “official” policy is, but her understanding of it is that fun is NOT encouraged… or allowed. And she shared some anecdotal evidence about her UAL peers getting chewed out for trying to make the safety demonstration fun. Hmmph. Oh, and guess how her morale was? Yeah, lousy.
She is a nice woman, but her loyalty to her employer and her customers ends at her paycheck.
I live in Colorado… and as it is a hub for United I fly them a lot. An awful lot. An AWFUL lot. I’m stuck with them. But I don’t like them. It’s clear to me that their employee morale is rock bottom. They are worried for their jobs and future. They don’t feel like the carrier is on their side. And their employee dissatisfaction comes through loud and clear to folks like me. Their customers. I have dozens of stories about how United could have easily earned my loyalty but instead made my life harder. It’s too bad. Especially because it doesn’t have to be that way.
They need — to be frank — me. Bad. Really bad. But they’ll never hire me to talk to their staff with ideas about how to connect enjoyment of their jobs to creating an outstanding airline. They haven’t noticed that the ONLY thing that sets them apart from their competitors is their people. And their people are unhappy. Very unhappy. Just ask that flight attendent.
I don’t hold out much hope for United Airlines. But maybe it isn’t too late for your organization.
Does YOUR company need to invest in your people’s quality of (work) life? Do you agree that NOW is the time to make sure they are at their best, because you simply cannot afford a staff that isn’t fully on board?
[Hey United Airlines! Honestly, you need to hire me, like, yesterday. Give me a buzz and I’ll help your folks which will help you. Guaranteed. Come on, I dare you!]
Go to the contact page and let’s talk about how to ramp up your groups attitudes and loyalty, and how that will create a great impact on your bottom line.
Now, for a contrast… check out what the wacky and successful Southwest Airlines is doing on board with their customers. Do these customers look happier than those you’ve seen on any UAL flight recently. You betcha. That, my friends, is what you call “a hint.”
Do you need to ramp up the attitude in your organization? You don’t even need to sing. Contact us now! Go to the contact page.
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Motivational Speaker, Humor in the Workplace Expert, Funny-ist