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The Reservation Nightmare

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The Reservation Nightmare is about a noted quality consultant named James Harrington that was trying to make a flight reservation to Canada with the ABC Travel Services. He called to ABC and the waiting began, first the telephone rang five times, so they started to ask questions, if his trip was related to company business, personal business or group travel, if his trip was within the United States, international, schedule training or related to a conference. After he answered these questions they said some instructions and made he wait until an international operator be free to attend him, so he remained in the line listening bad music, and they said again that all the operators were occupied, after more bad music, they asked him customer service number and last four digits of social security number. So after wait a few minutes more, finally he was attended, and the operator asked his information again, even though these numbers had already be informed, and when the operator discovered that James wanted to go to Canada, he said that is just a domestic operator and transferred the call to the correct place making the quality consultant wait and waste more time. Answer the Questions

1 – The ABC Travel Services provided a so slow and inefficient work, they asked some question and visibly did not used these information. They made the customer wait so long time, to put him with an operator that could not help him, despite of the fact that ABC had the necessary information to make the right transfer. The customer gave some information before be attended by the operator, to be asked again the same information. So this company did an inefficient job with the customer making him wait and waste so much time, moreover he probably was unsatisfied with the company and hardly will he use their services again. 2 – The travel agency could be more efficient wasting less time to the customer get what he wants, they could improve the information system to direct the customer to the correct place as fast as possible, and available more operators to economize customer time. The most important principle of Total Quality that is missing in this case is customer and stakeholder focus, customers are the judges of quality, companies should build good relationships with their customers, because in this way they will use the company’s services again and will continue using. If the company do not serve well it customer it will die. So improving their customer services, companies can have better revenues. Significant Learning Points

Like this case showed for us, we need to put the customers and stakeholders in the first place, they are responsible for our company, and they make the industry works, employee working every day to increase the production and improve the quality in on side, and customers judging the quality and deciding to continue or not using the company’s services, the company cannot survive without each one of the sides, both are extremely important and essential. To get improvements in a company we need leastways more two determinant principles: management by fact and visionary leadership. We only can improve what we can measure, we need information, feedback of our service or product, measures of our lean manufacture to know where can we make better, so knowing what is wrong, what can be improve, it will be easier to fix and get. Nothing is possible without a visionary leadership, even though a company without a good leader could survive, it will be wasted because without a real leader it do not have creative and innovative to improve, it will not take the necessary risks to earn a new market, it will not give motivation to its employees that is so important to make a great service that can attend the customer necessities and wishes.


Evans, James R. (2011). Quality & Performance Excellence – Management, Organization, and Strategy, 22 – 42.

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