A lot of times as your company grows, it’s impossible to micro manage and see what happens at every branch of your company, and the bigger the company gets, the majority of them move slower.
Even more unfortunate is the layer of staff who try to get by without doing much; even worse is when that energy and experience is passed on and delivered to your end customers.
Case in point: I am traveling back from Brussels to Vancouver via Montreal. The connection time is tight with a one-hour window. During this one hour connection time we have to pick up our checked luggage, clear customs, and go through security again in Montreal to board our domestic flight.
Concerned that we would not catch our connection, I asked the counter staff at Air Canada (it is a miracle they are still operating as they seem to be in the business of coordinating delays rather than flights) whether they could assist by switching us to the next flight out of Montreal to Vancouver as I am 99% sure we won’t make the connection. At this point our flight leaving Brussels had already been delayed by close to an hour.
My conversation with the staff:
“Will we be able to make the connection and if not can you switch us to the next flight?”
[converses with each other in French]
“We think you may have to hurry but it should be OK.”
Needless to say as our plane touched down in Montreal, it was the same time our flight to Vancouver departed. We then had to make an extra visit to the counter to get arranged on the next flight which meant an additional 4 hours of lost productivity.
Luckily for me I am able to work somewhat remotely, but how about for others who actually depend on airlines to be “on time”? In an industry plagued by delays and cancellations, it has become the norm for travellers to expect the worse.
The staff in Brussels could have done something for us instead of acting out of sheer laziness and passing the responsibility onto their colleagues in Montreal.
Little details such as this translates into poor customer experience and the culture of procrastination permeates throughout the organization. So far it’s evident Air Canada suffers from this “disease”.
The takeaway is to manage your company’s culture as it grows to avoid the slow-moving, lazy tendency of a corporate giant. I will close with a quote on the topic: