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Maverick The Story Teller
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*PS - All views here are my own and personal views.
Thursday, July 14, 2011
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
It is surprising to see how airlines in India are comfortable flying with empty business and first class seats? I am in BOM-JAIPUR AI flight and there are only 2 first class seats occupied out of 10 odd seats.
Does it make sense to fly with empty business class? I think it is a lost opportunity to make revenue.
Some thoughts on how things can turn around for an airline if they relinquish this practice
First – Positive WOM (for those who don’t understand WOM – it means Word of Mouth)
In today’s internet era where everyone gets to know about everything on the click of a button, can WOM be ignored?
WOM today plays a huge role in helping consumers buy what they are looking for. Consumers today go search for the smallest of items on the internet and if the item searched for has positive WOM on it, it can turn the tables in favor of the item and vice versa. To en-cash on this trend, most companies have set up Facebook pages/Twitter handles etc.
But is having that tool enough? How do you use it for business gains? Most people today are there on FB/Twitter/Google+ . Now if lets say an airline was to surprise a passenger by bumping them off to first class free of cost, it would bring smiles to the consumer as it would delight the passenger.
Most of the passengers today are killing time on social networking till the time flight takes off and imagine a FB/Twitter/Google+ update saying “thanks to xyz airline for free first class upgrade”. Now this would go to 100, 200, 500 people considering the contacts in the passengers profile but more importantly, the positive WOM for the airline has spread to hundreds of people by just one single gesture.
Maybe this crowd of people would consider this particular airline next time they fly as they would see an opportunity to get a first class upgrade incase of availability.
So if you see this is benefit to the airline and the passenger also.
Secondly – Revenue Generation
In today’s inflationary times most passengers are highly price conscious and would like to go with the cheapest airline unless they are millionaires or billionaires ( to them flying in economy class wont be worthy of their status and in their own right it would be correct too). So if you are bumping of a few passengers from existing economy class to first/business class, you are opening up the chance of selling out the freed up economy class seats to new passengers who may have otherwise choose to fly some other airlines. For e.g. if you have 6 seats empty in first class and you bump off 6 economy class passengers to the first class then you have 6 more seats left to offer to passengers who are at the airport and want to fly. If priced competitively the passengers would choose to fly with the airline which offers the best competitive price. The perceived negative is – offering the first class seat to a passenger in need at the airport.
Honestly, this seems to be far fetched hope because for someone who wants to travel first class, he or she would plan his/her travel well in advance.
Alternatively, an airline knows a few hours before departure the number of empty seats in first/business class. Be proactive, and suggest the economy class passengers pay a nominal charge and upgrade themselves to business/first class. For e.g. if someone has paid 3500 for an economy class ticket, offer him/her a business class upgrade at lets say Rs 500 extra. The passenger wouldn’t mind paying that much amount for such an upgrade. He/She would be delighted. In turn the airline would make Rs 500 per first class upgrade + the amount they are able to sell of the newly empty economy class ticket. Win Win situation for all!!
What I am talking about is not something not practiced in the airline industry globally but I guess it is time that Kingfisher/Jet and Air India start practicing it.
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Each one of them is trying to give their best in their own capacity.
Some of them have been high achievers in the past.
In a team there are high performers+normal performers+under performers. Each one knows who the other is but then they dont discriminate against anyone. Do you know why? Because they are a team. A team is a cohesive unit, it strives to achieve and deliver the results together as a unit.
And then someone sitting faraway in fantasy land decides that the high performers should be recognized, they should be made to stand out. So along comes a new sub organizational group for them and call them Club Peak. Now let us give them a new tie, new socks, new shirt collars so that they are proud to be a part of Club Peak.
Little do they realize that in the meantime, they have ended up creating a "Club Bleak" (normal performers+under performers). These guys who would have otherwise strive harder to deliver better would now be thinking that their future is now "BLEAK".
Although Club Peak is a noble thought it needs to be done in a way that it doesnt create Club Bleak.
PS - These are my personal views and not representative of any organization.