Leadership, strategic planning, operations, security, and customer service are areas in which I have both some expertise and an abiding interest. Hopefully, you will see something on this website that piques your interest and causes you to step back and evaluate your current processes and procedures.
Although I spent 30 years in charge of one part or another of Operations at The MAC‘s system of seven airports, it has been only recently that I have come to the realization that, aside from a couple of years early in my career, I have never, actually, been in Operations. I have always been in the people business.
Let me explain: To say that I have done Operations work while an airport employee would be akin to saying that McDonalds Corporation is in the business of selling hamburgers. McDonalds isn’t in the hamburger business, they are in the real estate business! Their franchisees may make money selling burgers, but the corporation makes money selling franchises. Likewise, I have not been in the operations business, I have been in the people business. Employees in my departments who have done “Operations” over the years have had the responsibility to make sure that air traffic comes and goes from our surfaces safely, and that the public is secure and well-served when they are using our terminals. I have spent most of my time supporting that work by concentrating on the “people business”, and I put that work into 4 categories:
First, developing the right staff is at the heart of people business, since without the right people in in the right places in the organization nothing else really matters. All the programs and directives and strategic plans and good intentions are virtually worthless without the right employees in place to execute those plans. So, it has been my responsibility over the years as I have moved up in the organization to make sure there is an alignment on staff between talent and organizational needs.
Second, the higher up I moved in the organization the more important it was for me to be the champion and sometimes defender of my staff to those I reported to and those who governed the organization. This is “people business” in its most critical nature. Ensuring that staff can function as independently as possible of organizational politics is critical to their ability to accomplish their portion of the company’s mission.
Third, an airport is a community of organizations, agencies and companies, each one critical to the work of customer service. Ensuring alignment between and among this community of disparate groups is vital to the success of any initiative.
Finally, airports are public service entities, no matter who owns and operates them. Therefore, as airport operators (and I was one once) we are all focused on the people who use our facilities and have the right to expect the best from us at all times. That is people business on the front lines, and I have been on those front lines working for a better customer experience for over two decades.
Whether your goal is to create a better customer experience, provide a more secure environment, or develop your organization’s mission, vision, and values to support that work, contact me. Perhaps I can help.