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Just kidding, we don’t care what you think of us.

by Michael Maoz  |  September 19, 2016  |  Comments Off on Just kidding, we don’t care what you think of us.

Let’s say that you are an airline that takes pride in reliability of service. It’s been a rough two months, and all is forgiven, even if it did take two days to get from Dallas to Boston this summer because of outages.

What is hard, though, is institutional blindness. How hard can it be to understand the customer, anyway? Here is today’s nattering: try to upgrade to a roomier seat on a flight. On some airlines it is a matter of $25 or $50 or $75. But on this airline, you need to re-write the entire ticket. But from your log-in on the website, it says that you can upgrade for free if you have a certain status. So you call in. An 8 – 13 minute wait, or get a ‘call back’ and keep your place in line. OK! Call back it is. After 11 minutes: callback.

“Hello, are you there?” they ask.


“Hello? Hello?


Rinse, in a lather, repeat.

Nine minutes later, the story about the ticket rewrite and $238 for a center seat with more room. Uggh.

Why was this information not automatically available on the website? Why lose 30 minutes of your life and a lot of useless talk?

Answer: horrendous disregard for the customer. Empathy be gone.

Insult piles on injury: “Would you agree to a one sentence survey?”


“Would you hire this representative?”

Um…. Wrong question. We would hire her as long as she never had to work for THIS airline.

And like all other surveys, this one is flushed down through the great digital commode, never to lead to process improvement, and never to truly listen to the voice of the customer, and guaranteed to undercut all Marketing efforts.

Process improvement is not rocket science: it requires observing the true customer experience and acting upon it. This is not a skill that most CIOs have, nor do they have the right contacts in the business units to support them. Result? You tell me.

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Michael Maoz
VP Distinguished Analyst
13 years at Gartner
26 years IT industry

Michael Maoz is a research vice president and distinguished analyst in Gartner Research. His research focuses on CRM and customer-centric Web strategies. Mr. Maoz is the research leader for both the customer service and support strategies area and customer-centric Web… Read Full Bio

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