FIT@50 / Week 82
While this week’s FIT@50 arrived a day late, it was also the article’s motivation. Max and I flew back home to Dallas late last night, and after a few days away from everyone, I decided the welcome backs were more important than the writing.
I make no secret that I believe in old-school American values. That particularly applies to the way you treat people. That of course, transcends to the way you conduct your business—both personal and professional.
Liliana Hart and I have chronicled our trials with the despicably unethical home builder, and both look forward to writing very candidly about who he is and the facts of his less-than-legal accounting and accountability. Our hope would be that our house would be the last house he’d be contracted to build.
But, we were blessed to recently sell that home and are grateful that it will bless another family. This of course brings me back on track about placing value in the values we hold dear.
People seem to always find a way to interact with Max. His friendly, whole-face smile disarms most, and his energetic enthusiasm for everything from muddling through the TSA screening process to ordering a NOLA Lucky Dog attracts positive attention from others.
We like Southwest Airlines for our every week and a half flights back and forth between Dallas and Louisiana. It’s a casual flight, and although I’m not a big fan of competitive cattle-call seating, the one hour and fifteen minute flights whiz by.
What also makes them our favorite carrier is the way their employees seem to enjoy being there. Southwest Airlines has a storied past about the way they bucked the traditionally rigid airline business model to become the only major carrier to have not filed bankruptcy, merged and consistently posted profits for the last 43 years.
They empower people—their employees.
This was evident Friday as Max and I boarded and the pilot immediately greeted us. Max’s usual smile was on display as he returned the hello. The pilot invited Max into the cockpit. Max hesitated. The pilot asked again with an even warmer welcome.
Max was invited to sit in the giant captain’s seat while the instrument panel popped alive with brilliant lights and buttons. His face brightened even more as he repeatedly mouthed, “WOW.”
After a fun, casual chat and a few pictures, we headed back to our seats. Immediately, I tweeted the picture of Max with his new friend and tagged @SouthwestAir. Their top-notch public relations team quickly responded and sent a direct message to my account thanking me and asked for a flight confirmation to thank the pilot and crew.
By the time we deplaned, the pilot told Max good-bye. He shook my hand and said, “Thanks Brother. I appreciate the good word over Twitter.”
Talk about custom, customer service!
While it may seem to be a promo for Southwest Airlines (it is a little) it’s more about an appreciation for a company that started and still values their core values.
Their company values include:
Live the Southwest Way
– Warrior Spirit
– Servant’s Heart
– Fun-LUVing Attitude
They came through last night and made a sweet boy who already flies often, an even bigger fan of the friendly skies. They did good.