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Respect for private life is that only thing that matters in communication. And it is so unfair that people stop paying attention to that

Theresa Matson

I am an EX- Northwest flight Attendent( I worked with Norhtwest for 10 years) and agree with most of what you said. Although there were a few VERY nice flight attendents out there, most are very mean and I agree it's from being treated like crap! I was ALWAYS questioned on my actions , you were not allowed to make mistakes without being reprimanded, The managers never believed you side of a story,you weren't allowed to be sick more than 3 times a year or you are put on probabtion( and your kids are NEVER allowed to be sick!!), and if you hurt yourself lifting a bag for some old lady, you are not guaranteed any leaves of absence for that because it IS against the rules to help people with their bags!( But other airlines are allowed to and expected to help with bags).I could go on and on and on, but I AM a nice Minnesota Girl!!


This is complete bull. I actually flew Northwest and Delta and preferred the Northwest crews every single time! Minnesota nice at its best!

Juan Tripp

Sounds like someone is bitter to the bone. You have got to be the most "UN inspirational" person ever to strike a key board.

Your vindictive generalizations against thousands of Northwest employees make you seem...well, little. Your doubtful observations don't match the customer service records provided by the DOT of the two airlines.

Your issues seem to be personal (didn't get up-graded?)and your writing childish at most. If your are to attempt to be a reviewer of a group of airline employees, at least make a mature effort to do it objectively. Your bigger issues appear to be with UNIONS.

New Balance Shoes

With a gust of wind, To my greetings, With a moonlight, reflects my prayer, With a few dewdrops, soak my sincere, With a blessing, connect you my friendship, Wish friends every day happy!


oh my.... i just discovered you last night and again i am blown away... someone who thinks like i think uses words i use.... and yet here is another question and 'game' i played on a recent trip to northern michigan from phoenix....

this is "weird" - in less than 24 hours the ideas, thoughts, flip even the graphics i have been drawn to are right in front of me....

Brad Young

This story has some half-truths, but mostly gross generalizations applicable to many of the biggest US airlines, and some downright hateful (vengeful?) verbal attacks. I guess you have to do that when you really have nothing new to say, but need new material to pass as a self-proclaimed inspirational speaker. If this story is supposed to inspire corporate executives to treat their employees better, then Cynic is speaking to the wrong group of people. These men and women aren't dumb; they already know this elementary adage of good business. The problem is that "good business" isn't the goal. The goal is to make the most profit in the shortest amount of time, to be able to cash out and move on. Most don't care what happens to the business long term--they don't plan on being there more than 5-10 years anyway. Do some more research and you will see that half of the top decision makers at the new Delta, are from Northwest. If a company really wanted to make a difference, then why would they bring along the leaders of an airline with a long and well-documented history of poor labor relations to help you run the (currently) world's largest airline? The bigger plan of what is to come of the merged airline, may only be beginning to unfold. Looking forward to your updated generalization of native Delta employees in a year or two.

Scott Taylor

Now if only we could go back to having Pepsi products on the flights...

Mark Graban

First time reader, thanks to Jamie Flinchbaugh.

Great post. I fly American all the time, being based at DFW. Even without a merger, the air crew members are more often than not crabby and miserable. I try not to blame them, realize that AA management has repeatedly cut pay of pilots and FAs and then senior management gets huge bonuses. And wonder why morale sucks?

So I end up with bad treatment, as a customer, because of the bad treatment of employees.

I wish DFW wasn't such a monopoly AA market... I really don't have a choice when I fly, regardless of their inane announcements over the PA.

Many hospitals are also trying to change their culture to take better care of the staff so patients get better treatment. It seems so basic and fundamental, but so many companies and leaders seem NOT to understand this.

Mark@Hoodia Gordonii

I would want my daughters to be a stewardess too. They look so elegant and very well respected.

Christopher Stafford

Wow, so funny, flying SFO to Detroit tomorrow morning, will have to check that out. I have heard their first class is terrible, we'll see!

Simon Sinek

Lester - you're right. I hope that the Delta management has success working with the newest members of their family.

The bigger issue is that companies don't consider their respective cultures when they decide to merge. They look at their products and think what a great opportunity. 50% of all corporate mergers fail. And additional 25% don't pay back the ROI promised. Which means 75% of them weren't worth it.

The first line of the WSJ always reads the same way after the failed merger - "cultures didn't merge."

Companies are collections of people. Such a simple idea so often forgotten.

Lester Sutherland

Some fairly good insights, up to the point where the author begins his guessing about the workers relationship to the union, then it takes on a tone of his outlook. It takes time to change to a new culture. Just like a dog that is mistreated, and then adopted from the pound, it will require lots of love to bring the employees who have been mistreated by management back around. We should also play the "which airline did this manager come from" game.


I saw the same scenario when United acquired. Pan Am. While United still has a way to go in terms of improving customer relations, Pan Am was very much like Northwest. I quit flying Northwest years ago due to the way their employees acted, it was my airline of 'last' choice.

Hopefully the United merger with Continental will result in a positive change for both entities. Every once in awhile I have had someone from United perform absolutely stellar service. And most UA employees try to do the right thing. So I hope for their sake they end up with a better/stronger leadership group.

Mars Dorian

ohhh man, how can you treat your people this way ? A lot of big companies don't give a crap about their employees, and only care for the Benjamins flying into their pockets.

The paradox is that if you create a kick-ass environment, you will have better profits, because happy employees means happy customers.

That's why Zappos is really killing it.


In the Netherlands there is a similar company called Aldi. Just recently they transfered from the normal cash systems with codes into the barscanner (about 3 years ago). The employees were so focussed on the codes and not on the customer. It led to a no speaking area because they had no time to talk, they had to type the codes.

No it's becoming a more friendly environment for employees and customers because you have contact with the cashier. The barcode scanner was implemented with pressure of unions. It was no mangement call.


Played this with USAirways/America West after their merger. The America West crews are the loud and rude ones...it's not even a game anymore.


Totally understandable. In the UK, at London Heathrow to be specific, Continental used to (pre-merger,) rely on BAA staff to handle the check-in procedure. I'm not sure if they still do, and I sincerely hope they do not!

The BAA staff have been so poorly managed that they exhibit all of the same symptoms as you have described.

I have even seen perfectly well mannered customers verbally and emotionally put down so much by BAA staff that it is shocking; not to mention that on one trip I saw a family of ordinary people get put on BAA's terrorist watchlist just for asking why they needed to check in twice!

Corporate culture matters a LOT, the big issue is that these corporations aren't interested in good relations, just pure greed.

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