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If thinkf thatf mostf companiesf viewf theirf customersf asf onef off thef mostf importantf partsf off
theirf businessf becausef withoutf them,f theref wouldf bef nof business.f Theyf aref threef partnersf
andf withoutf themf thef companyf wouldf notf bef ablef tof maintainf itsf businessf withoutf them.f
Inf largerf companiesf theyf sometimesf thef partnersf forgetf tof followf thef rightf proceduresf
whenf handlingf certainf situations.
If thinkf thatf theref weref nof rightf orf wrongf decisionsf inf whetherf anf airline’sf neededf tof stafff
orf cancelf af flightf isf moref importantf thanf passengers’f needsf tof travelf tof theirf destinationsf
iff theyf followf theirf rulesf andf regulationsf andf dof notf breakf thef law,f andf thef safetyf off
everyonef well-being.f If havef beenf inf af couplef situationsf thatf if havef hadf delaysf andf hadf tof
getf offf duef tof stafff callingf off sickf duef tof covidf orf justf wasf runningf latef andf wef wouldf
havef missedf thef connectingf flight.f So,f wef hadf tof waitf untilf thef nextf onef wasf veryf
unfortunatef butf theref wasf nothingf wef couldf do.If thinkf inf somef casef inf thisf incidentf thatf
happenedf onf thef airline,f itf wouldf bringf badf publicityf forf thef airlinesf whichf willf causef
peoplef tof notf wantf tof buyf ticketsf andf tof choicef af differentf airline.f Af lotf off timef mostf
flyersf choicef theirf flightsf offf howf someonef elsef lovesf theref airlinef andf reputation.f Samef
forf investorf iff thef negativityf off thef companyf isf downf itf willf causef themf notf wantf tof investf
inf thef company.f Asf withf mostf things,f andf mostf peoplef theref aref "good"f andf "bad"f
companies.f If dof notf believef thatf thisf isf anf examplef off howf mostf orf evenf halff off somef
companiesf treatf andf valuef theirf customers.f If alsof believef thatf itf doesf happenf moref
frequentlyf inf largerf companies/corporationsf thanf itf wouldf inf sayf af mom-and-popf shop,f
restaurant,f orf otherf business.f Itf seemsf tof mef thatf mostf companiesf wouldf bef awaref thatf
theirf customersf aref thef onlyf reasonf theyf exist.
If personallyf don'tf believef thatf lackf off planningf orf availabilityf off stafff shouldf affectf thef
wayf af companyf treatsf theirf customers.f If havef neverf personallyf experiencedf orf witnessedf
thisf kindf off "companyf first"f mentality.f However,f itf seemsf tof bef occurringf moref andf moref
frequentlyf inf recentf years.f Althoughf If knowf thatf overbookingf andf weightf restrictionsf aref af
reality,f If don'tf believef thatf thef extremityf tof whichf thef airlinef stafff escalatedf thingsf wasf
appropriatef orf ethical.
Thef effectf thatf thef eventf suchf asf thef onef involvingf Dr.f Daof andf thef "badf press"f off thef
entiref situationf couldf causef stakeholdersf tof sellf outf theirf stocksf whichf wouldf inf thef endf
devastatef thef airlinef financially.f Hadf thef boycottf becomef af reality,f Unitedf wouldf havef lostf
millionsf inf revenuef asf wellf asf costf theirf affiliatesf af lotf off money.f Theref isf alwaysf af
correctf andf ethicalf wayf tof handlef af situationf suchf asf thef onef Unitedf faced,f evenf iff theref isf
notf alwaysf onef correctf solutionf tof thef situation.f If dof notf thinkf allf companiesf thinkf aboutf
theirf customers.f If feelf af lotf off companiesf thinkf thatf thef customersf aref af hugef partf off theirf
companyf becausef iff theyf didn’tf havef customers,f theyf wouldf notf havef business.f Whichf isf
whyf customersf shouldf bef treatedf withf certainf respectf meaningf dealtf with,f withf kindnessf
andf pleasedf tof af point.
If personallyf havef beenf toldf If andf myf childrenf couldn’tf takef thef flightf dof tof overf
booking/weightf restriction.f Thatf theyf wouldf rebookf thef nextf dayf freef off charge.f Sof
althoughf If thinkf it’sf commonf thatf theyf “overf book”,f it’sf howf theyf handledf it,f If thinkf
couldf havef gonef differently.f Hef shouldf havef beenf ablef tof flyf onf thatf flightf becausef hef hadf
alreadyf boughtf hisf ticketf whereasf theyf shortf staffedf andf neededf thatf stafff memberf theref
whichf isf notf hisf fault.
Byf someonef comingf outf aboutf thef incidentf thatf happenedf onf thef airline,f itf wouldf bringf
badf publicityf forf thef airlinesf whichf willf causef peoplef tof notf wantf tof buyf tickets.f Whichf
alsof affectsf thef outsidef companyf thatf alsof advertisesf theirf discountedf prices.f Asf wellf asf
thef mediaf wouldf havef coverage.f If thinkf thatf mostf companiesf viewf theirf customersf asf onef
off thef mostf importantf partsf off theirf businessf becausef withoutf them,f theref wouldf bef nof
business.f If thinkf thatf itf isf importantf tof upholdf allf promisesf andf expectationsf tof thef
customersf andf bef willingf tof dof whateverf youf canf do,f withinf reason,f tof appeasef yourf
customers.f Off course,f theref aref processesf andf proceduresf thatf canf limitf whatf canf bef donef
butf thef goalf shouldf bef customerf satisfaction.f Inf myf opinion,f Dr.f Daof shouldf havef beenf
allowedf tof travelf onf hisf flightf regardlessf off thef needsf off thef airlinef becausef theref wasf anf
expectationf andf obligationf setf whenf hef purchasedf hisf ticket.f Thef airlinef shouldf havef beenf
ablef tof foreseef thef staffingf issuef andf addressf itf withoutf affectingf theirf payingf customers.f If
understandf thatf anotherf entiref flightf wouldf havef beenf cancelledf iff thef stafff weref notf onf
thatf flight,f butf Dr.f Daof wasf alreadyf inf hisf seatf readyf tof travel.f Sincef thef airlinef failedf tof
stafff correctly,f theyf shouldf havef tof eatf thef repercussionsf off cancellingf af flight.f Customers,f
beingf anf externalf stakeholder,f willf stopf doingf businessf withf companiesf withf af badf
reputationf off makingf poorf choices.f Thef mediaf willf profitf offf thef backlashf off thesef
incidentsf andf competitorsf willf gainf moref business.f Thef lossf inf businessf canf affectf thef
financialf institutionsf thatf backf thef company.f Thef third-partyf companiesf thatf sellf airlinef
ticketsf forf thatf companyf canf alsof losef profits.f If dof believef thatf thisf couldf havef beenf
handledf muchf differentlyf byf Unitedf Airlines.f If canf understandf thatf itf wasf veryf importantf
tof getf thef stafff tof thef otherf locationf becausef iff thef stafff isf notf theref tof operatef thef aircraftf
thenf insteadf off onef passengerf notf beingf ablef tof getf tof theirf destinationf itf wouldf havef beenf
anf entiref flight.f Af canceledf flightf meansf af lossf off revenuef forf Unitedf Airlinesf butf If
believef thisf allf couldf havef beenf avoided.f Allf off thef blamef forf thisf situationf goesf towardsf
Unitedf Airlinesf overf af schedulingf errorf iff youf knowf youf needf 10f crewf membersf onf thatf
flightf thenf youf notf sellf 10f tickets.f Evenf thoughf If dof understandf whyf Dr.f Daof wasf beingf
askedf tof givef upf hisf seatf If dof notf blamef thef doctorf forf refusingf becausef hef hadf purchasedf
thef ticketf andf expectedf tof getf af flightf inf return.f Asf forf mef If wouldf bef realf carefulf whenf
flyingf notf tof bookf af Unitedf flightf butf alsof If wouldf sayf thisf wouldf hurtf thef stockf andf havef
af negativef effectf forf thef stakeholders.f If feelf thatf inf thisf casef withf Unitedf airlinesf didf
sacrificef af customer’sf well-beingf forf itsf ownf needs.f If dof notf thinkf thatf allf businessesf viewf
theirf customersf inf thisf way,f itf wasf thatf currentlyf off technologyf thef videof effectedf thef
opinionf moref byf thef evidencef thatf wasf showed,f andf itf showedf thef sidef off thef customersf
pointf off viewf moref andf notf thef airlinesf pointf off viewf less.f Youf mustf lookf atf allf thef
evidencef legallyf andf morallyf andf formf yourf ownf opinionsf andf statedf whichf sidef youf aref
onf eitherf withf unitedf orf Drf Daof basef offf thef evidencef thatf youf have,f and,f inf thisf case,f Drf
Daof seemedf tof bef morallyf andf legallyf rightf inf thisf case.f Theref weref nof rightf orf wrongf
decisionsf inf whetherf anf airline’sf neededf tof stafff orf cancelf af flightf isf moref importantf thanf
passengers’f needsf tof travelf tof theirf destinationsf iff theyf followf theirf rulesf andf regulationsf
andf dof notf breakf thef law,f If dof believef thatf inf hindsightf itf couldf havef beenf managedf af
littlef bitf betterf thanf whatf thef airlinesf hadf donef tof thef customer.f If believef thatf whenf youf
buyf af ticketf tof fly,f thanf youf aref signingf upf tof abyf byf allf rulesf andf regulationsf off thef
airlinesf andf itf statedf thatf theyf couldf removef him,f thanf thef airlinesf weref inf thef rightsf tof
removef himf fromf thef plane,f justf maybef inf af differentf wayf thanf whatf wasf shownf onf thef
video.f If hadf encounterf delayf flightsf before,f butf notf toof thisf extremef andf If hadf askedf tof
showf myf rightsf asf af passengerf andf itf showedf myf rightsf whenf purchasingf anf airlinef ticket,f
customersf agreef tof thef rulesf andf conditionsf off thef airline’sf servicesf andf thef airlinesf
accommodatedf mef accordingf tof theirf rulesf andf regulations.If believef thatf whatf mayf happenf
iff anf airlinef makesf af poorf choice,f asf inf Dr.f Dao’sf case,f whichf affectsf itsf externalf
stakeholdersf byf jeopardizingf itsf stockf price.f Again,f If dof notf thinkf mostf businessesf lookf atf
theirf customersf thisf wayf hasf inf thef videof withf Drf Daof andf Unitedf Airlines.f If thinkf somef
bigf companiesf andf corporationsf seef thef needsf off theirf customersf asf moref importantf thanf
accommodatingf thef pilotsf overf thef customer’sf needs.f Thef externalf stakeholdersf aref
affectedf byf af businessf decisionf withf thef externalf stakeholdersf thatf aref groupsf outsidef af
businessf orf peoplef whof dof notf workf insidef thef businessf butf aref affectedf inf certainf wayf byf
thef decisionsf andf actionsf off thef business.f Examplesf off externalf stakeholdersf aref
customers,f suppliers,f creditors,f thef localf community,f society,f andf thef government.f Thef
company'sf reputationf isf atf stakef andf isf anf intangiblef assetf andf af sourcef off competitivef
advantagef againstf rivalsf becausef thef companyf willf bef viewedf asf moref dependable,f
credible,f trustworthy,f andf responsiblef tof itsf employees,f customers,f shareholdersf andf
financialf marketsf andf youf dof notf wantf tof jeopardizef thisf inf anyf wayf whatsoever.f If feelf
likef itf dependsf onf thef companyf andf howf bigf theyf are.f Whenf itf comesf tof hugef businesses,f
If feelf likef theyf don'tf caref asf muchf orf treat/viewf theirf customersf inf thisf typef off way.f If feelf
likef it'sf importantf forf companiesf tof stafff appropriatelyf withf customers’f needsf inf mind.f
Youf cannotf losef focusf onf thef customers’f needsf otherwisef youf willf losef theirf business.f
Therefore,f itf isf moref importantf tof focusf onf thef customerf needs.f Although,f If thinkf nof
matterf whatf theyf alsof havef tof focusf onf thef customersf safetyf onf thef flight.f Whenf
somethingf thisf drasticf happensf andf itf makesf itf tof thef publicf likef itf did,f itf canf reallyf
impactf thef business.f Nowf If knowf Unitedf isf worthf severalf billionsf off dollars,f butf itf isf stillf
importantf tof treatf yourf customersf well.f 1.f Becausef theref aref otherf airlinesf thatf willf gladlyf
takef thef passengerf andf youf willf losef thatf businessf forever.f 2.f Justf likef Dr.f Dao'sf said,f thef
company’sf stockf wentf down.f 3.f You'llf getf tonsf andf tonsf off negativef reviewsf whenf
somethingf badf goesf viralf andf itf willf turnf futuref customersf away.f If don'tf agreef withf thef
wayf thingsf weref handledf andf If agreef withf somef off thef classf viewpointsf statingf thatf notf allf
businessesf treatf peoplef inf suchf af wayf thatf happenedf inf 2017.f Inf myf honestf opinion,f If
don'tf thinkf af flightf shouldf bef canceledf unlessf theref aref problemsf withf thef planef itselff orf
badf weather.f If dof believef mistakesf dof occurf andf theref shouldf bef af systemf tof focusf onf thef
preventionf off overbookingf flights.f If sayf thatf because,f aboutf 5yrsf agof If tookf myf firstf flightf
andf didn'tf knowf anythingf aboutf first-class,f priority,f etc.f Oncef If sawf thingsf forf myselff tof
mef itf justf didn'tf makef anyf sense.f Onf myf firstf flightf feltf likef everyonef aroundf mef knewf
myf fundsf weren'tf thatf bigf uponf thef rolef callf tof boardf thef plane.f Inf myf mindf If thoughtf
theref weref specialf planesf forf differentf classes,f it'sf accordingf tof whatf you'ref willingf tof payf
tof getf thef topf off thef line.
So,f If sayf thatf tof sayf this:f Thef systemf withf Unitedf Airlinesf couldf bef reroutedf inf af differentf
formatf andf analyzef waysf tof makef thingsf betterf forf thef peoplef asf wellf asf thef staff.f Itf isf
importantf tof havef flightf attendantsf onf boardf asf well,f don'tf getf mef wrongf butf thef wholef
perspectivef off thingsf needsf tof bef addressedf differentlyf therefore,f stocksf won'tf bef affected.f
Allf sortsf off thingsf canf possiblyf happenf iff poorf choicesf aref madef suchf asf losingf customersf
andf beingf thef headlinef off newsf andf that'sf neverf goodf forf anyonef unlessf it'sf af greatf
acknowledgmentf off success.
believef thef safetyf off thef passagesf isf thef mostf importantf issuef thatf needsf tof resolve.f Iff thef
flightf needsf tof bef cancelledf duef tof staffingf issuesf thatf wouldf directlyf impairf thef safetyf
thenf thef correctf choicef wouldf bef tof cancelf thef flight.f Thef worldf isf alwaysf watchingf inf
thisf digitalf age!f Whenf youf makef af poorf choice,f especiallyf onef thatf goesf viralf thef entiref
worldf knowsf aboutf itf allf thef time.f off course,f withf thef generalf publicf activelyf avoidingf thisf
companyf likef whatf happenedf withf Dr.f Dao,f stakeholdersf willf choosef tof leavef inf favorf off
wheref thef publicf willf takef itsf money.
If believef businessesf trulyf lookf atf theirf customers’f needsf appropriately/differently.f If willf
explain:f eachf companyf isf different,f sof theyf tendf tof requestf feedbackf andf recognizef needsf
off customersf inf differentf ways.f Eachf companyf adjustsf theirf environmentsf andf customerf
servicef basedf onf thef needsf off thef customers.f Airlinesf tendf tof cancelf af flightf overf havingf
thef limitedf numberf off staff,f whichf isf thef rightf decision.f Thisf canf becomef anf issuef whenf
peoplef needf tof travel,f andf plansf aref cancelledf duef tof staffingf shortage.f Yet,f itf isf thef rightf
decision,f asf ultimatelyf thef customer’sf needsf (inf flight),f aref takenf intof considerationf whenf
anf airlinef makesf anf adjustmentf andf cancelsf suchf asf this.f Itf causesf issuesf forf employeesf
dealingf withf unhappyf customers,f butf ultimatelyf itf isf thef rightf thingf tof do.f Takingf risks,f
especiallyf inf anf airline,f canf causef catastrophicf affectsf fromf losingf af businessf tof losingf
goodf employees.f Also,f impactfulf off thef overallf “name”f off af businessf canf bef severelyf
impacted.f Recognizingf thesef typesf off situationsf willf occurf andf havingf af processf off
communicationf withf higherf leadershipf beforef itf happensf again.f Whatf couldf happen?f
Moneyf loss,f customerf loss,f employeef dissatisfaction.f Thef readingf isf situationalf andf canf
occurf inf differentf businesses.f Unitedf didf notf takef caref off theirf customersf inf thef reading.f
Thesef largerf companiesf tendf tof thinkf theyf canf actf inf af certainf way,f becausef off thef amountf
off businessf theyf willf continuef tof takef on.f Thisf decisionf couldf havef furtherf implicationsf
andf shouldf notf happenf again.f Yes,f If thinkf Unitedf didf sacrificef af customer’sf well-beingf forf
theirf ownf needsf andf personalf gain.f Thisf behaviourf isf af directf examplef off howf somef
businessesf withf power,f tendf tof treatf theirf customers.f However,f thef reasonf thesef companiesf
getf awayf withf thisf typef off behaviourf isf becausef off theirf globalf positionf inf power.f If
rememberf thisf incidentf whenf itf tookf placef andf If rememberf seeingf Dr.f Daof beingf draggedf
off.f Thinkf aboutf thef emotionalf damagef causedf becausef off thef powerf heldf atf thatf momentf
byf thef airlines.f Asf forf thef airline’sf needf tof ensuref theirf flightf attendantsf getf tof theirf
destinations,f I’mf suref thatf playedf af rolef inf thef forcef andf aggressionf thatf wasf usedf onf Dr.f
Dao.f Theoryf Xf wasf clearlyf inf controlf withf thisf situation.Iff wef weref tof lookf atf anotherf
companyf likef T-Mobile,f wef wouldf seef af differentf approach.f Yes,f af totallyf differentf
situation;f nof planesf involved,f nof unrulyf passengers,f etc.f However,f whenf someonef callsf tof
explainf anf issuef withf T-Mobile,f itf wouldn’tf matterf howf muchf youf yelledf off screamedf atf
themf onf thef phone,f theyf wouldf tendf tof keepf theirf cool.f Byf thef endf off thef conversation,f
youf wouldf probablyf endf upf withf $20f inf credit.f Thisf typef off approachf towardsf customers,f
althoughf sometimesf isn’tf realistic,f itf tendsf tof work.f Whenf companies’f employees’f createf af
situationf likef thef onef withf United,f thef publicf tendsf tof reactf quickly,f thanksf tof socialf
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