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Scott McKain

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So, Why Isn’t Everyone Doing This?

Posting from my iPhone at LAX

Posting from my iPhone at LAX. I’m flying Virgin America today for the first time, and I’m waiting at the gate to board a flight to JFK/New York City.

I’m already impressed. When I walked up to the ticket counter, hip music was playing. The counter is lower than other airlines, so you don’t perceive a barrier between you and the ticket agent.

After my bags were checked, the agent stepped from behind the counter to hand me a boarding pass and point me to security. The way she handled it was if I had bought a ring from Tiffany’s!

Even though I’m hungry, I’m waiting until I’m on the flight to eat. They have a sign that the food on the plane is made to order (even in Coach!) and that we should expect delicious!

And, as usual with all things Virgin and Sir Richard Branson, everything is also done with a bit of humor.

Notice the way the agent treated me has set a tone for my entire experience — and nothing she did cost Virgin America a dime more than other airlines will spend.

The problem with many businesses in general — and it is easy to see with airlines in particular — is not with the economy, but rather with philosophy.

I just don’t believe United, for example, has a similar philosophy. That’s why you have a YouTube video about their bad baggage handling with millions of views — as opposed to me raving about my check-in with their competition.

Just wondering…suppose some VP of Efficiency measuring steps would tell Virgin ticket agents to stay behind the counter? Would he or she seek to eliminate the VERY aspect that made the experience compelling?

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Scott McKain is a business leader, bestselling author, and Hall of Fame professional speaker.
Scott's latest book, "The Collapse of Distinction: Stand Out and Move Up While Your Competition Fails" reached the #1 spot on list of Customer Service Bestsellers! He is the author of two #1 additional business bestsellers ( & 800-CEO-READ): "What Customers REALLY Want" (currently available in trade paperback) and "ALL Business is Show Business."
He is the Co-founder and Principal of The Value Added Institute, a think-tank that examines the role of the customer experience in creating significant advances in the level of client loyalty, and has appeared on multiple occasions as a commentator and analyst on FOX News Channel. His platform presentations have run the gamut from the White House lawn with the President in the audience carried live on CNN and NBC's "Today" a remote outpost near the Amazon...all 50 states, seven Canadian provinces...and from Singapore to Sweden...Mexico to Morocco.
An inductee into the Professional Speakers Hall of Fame, he is also a member of "Speakers Roundtable" -- an elite, invitation-only group of twenty of the world's top business speakers.