As I am writing this, I am in San Francisco. My husband is attending a due diligence meeting for his practice, and we have decided to extend through the weekend to enjoy this wonderful city. In making our travel arrangements, and because of a previous experience of mine, I told my husband when booking our flight that we should look at flying out on Virgin America. My previous experience with Virgin America was not only positive, but different than any other airline I have flown. Think of the smiles and hospitality of flying Southwest Airlines meets assigned seating, newer airplanes and upgraded in-flight amenities.
As we finish up boarding, and prior to Virgin America’s innovative way of going through their pre-flight announcements regarding the exits and safety belts, we experience something I never have in my 38 years of flying. Out came our captain. As he walked through first class then through parts of coach, he stopped and shook the hands of passengers. He welcomed us aboard and thanked us for choosing his airline. Then, instead of the usual “This is your captain speaking” coming in over the intercom, he stood close to the front, and gave his welcome aboard speech to all of us, looking and smiling at us with expressions of gratitude, as well as letting us know that we will have a smooth ride all the way here. It reminded me that just when you think that a business is doing something different and better, there is always a way to continue to bring a little something extra to the table to set yourself apart from the competition.
Sometimes in any organization, it is easy to get stuck in the “if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it” mentality. Imagine how great we can be, if instead of that dated line of thinking, we focused on taking existing products, processes, how we treat our employees and how we serve our clients and changed it just for the sake of creating a better overall experience for each party involved. It is this type of proactive thinking that helps an organization like Virgin America and many others that give us these little extras stand apart from the rest. I’ll buy a ticket for that ride any day.
In closing and for your viewing pleasure…the Virgin America Safety Video. Enjoy. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j6ixjc5yeMU