Oh her? She’s new: A lesson in attitude and performance
Knowing this, Charlie responds to Sweet Dee by saying “Yes, I agree you are here for safety. But you’re not in the safety business. You are in the customer service business. I think you made a mistake by separating the two. Safety is part of the customer service you provide. It’s an important part, but still just a part.”
As she rolled her eyes, Charlie said, “Think about it. 99.9 percent of the time, you are dealing with people and their needs; Serving drinks, answering questions and getting them things. You’re not dealing with safety issues. Most of your time on the job is spent providing customer service.”
Knowing flying is very safe, Charlie even asked Sweet Dee, “Have you ever been on a plane that has crashed?” “No,” Sweet Dee replied. “Well, there you go then,” Charlie said. “You’ve never even been on a plane that’s crashed. Yet it’s your excuse for bossing people around.” Again, Sweet Dee demanded, “I’m here mainly for your safety…SIR!”
Growing tired of the conversation and realizing that all of the passengers had pulled their ear phones out and were now listening intently, Charlie finally said, “Okay. You’re here mainly for my safety. Fine. Then why is the other flight attendant back in coach being so nice? You know, the one who is always smiling, being polite, courteous, helpful, and friendly? Why is she asking people to do things and not barking orders? You do the same job yet she’s making people feel good about it. Why is that?”
Sweet Dee looked down the aisle, looked back at Charlie and smiled condescendingly, pointed down at the other flight attendant, and said, “Oh, her? She’s new.”
There you have it. A perfect example of someone who’s attitude is driving their performance. Was it her ability? Probably not, she knows how to smile. She knows how to ask instead of demand. She knows how to talk to people, so as not to make them feel yelled at. Her ability is just fine. What was driving her poor performance in customer service? Her attitude!
It’s her attitude about what she does for a living which is driving her poor performance. Maybe her attitude is that she is in the business of safety, transportation or “keeping the airplane clean.” Who knows?
It’s not that she has a nasty attitude in life. It’s just that she doesn’t understand her job. You see, she’s not in the transportation business or the safety business. She’s in the customer service business. Performance is 80 percent attitude and 20 percent ability.