David Neeleman Reinvents Airlines
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The founder of JetBlue, David Neeleman started the company with the vision of bringing humanity back to air travelâ€. (Neeleman 2003) His main mission was to establish a low cost airline that offered first class comfort and services to their customers at an economic price that everyone could afford. He believed in having everyone in the organization to focus on the main objectives which are to work as a team. He also valued feedback from customers that way he can improve the experience of not just that customer, but all other customers as well. He introduced a Passenger Bill of Rights which specifies what the organization expects to do for their customers.
The culture of JetBlue and Azul follows the same principles of learning from each other and to always make improvement where necessary. The article mentions that before Neeleman started Azul airline he made it his duty to get as much feedback as possible form passengers to help improve the passengers overall experience. He believes in giving the customer what they want at the most reasonable price possible as well as taking care of his employees. He strived to hired employees that share the same goals and vision as the company to help insure the very best service is provided to each and every passenger. They managed to develop a Customer Bill of Rightsâ€ which states;
JetBlue Airways is dedicated to bringing humanity back to air travel. We strive to make every part of your experience as simple and as pleasant as possible. Unfortunately, there are times when things do not go as planned. If you’re inconvenienced as a result, we think it is important that you know exactly what you can expect from us. That’s why we created our Customer Bill of Rights. These Rights will always be subject to the highest level of safety and security for our customers and crewmembers. (JetBlue Website) David Neeleman was a true leader because he was not afraid to admit when he made a mistake; a good example of this was the delayed airplane that stayed on the runway for seven hours. After that incident he made sure that he took full responsibility as the leader and issue a public apology to all the passengers on board and provided reassurance that this will never happen again to all future passengers.
The leader plays a vital role in influencing culture because in class we keep on discussing that you must have followers in order to be a leader and your followers must also have faith in their leader. With Neeleman, he had a vision and with that he was able to get people on board to share his experiences. He believed that regardless of your position you should treat everyone equally across the organization. Neeleman instilled the culture of customer focus and customer satisfaction from the inception of the company. Because he had passed experience in the industry, he was able to distinguish between what customers were most interested. Its not by chance that all three airline organization that he was a part of were all successful.
He has great leadership qualities that enable him to gain their trust and have a competitive advantage over other airline companies. I believe that he is a Participative Leader because he valued other peoples opinions and takes that into consideration. His personally also made him a very likeable person that carried over into his work. He doesnt make his position over shadow his ability to lead. His religious background helps influence his vision for a better airline. This quote that I found basically sums up what hes all about. “People do a better job if they respect the leader of the company. I learned that on my mission — the value of people and how to truly appreciate them, Neeleman is quoted saying in Jeff Benedicts book The Mormon Way of Doing Business. “My missionary experience obliterated class distinction for me. I learned to treat everyone the same.” (LaMotta 2010)