Southwest Airlines Culture

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Southwest Airlines was created in 1967, as a small short distance airline. Through the 1970’s Southwest was an airline fighting for a place, living in survival mode. However, in 1980, a change began to reformulate their focus.
The culture of Southwest was born of that reformulation. Southwest made the decision to focus on the heart of their company, the people. In doing this they created a culture that not only values the customer, but the people of Southwest as well.
Steps to Culture Change
Southwest took several steps to reinventing their culture, this included identifying the problem, creating a vision, instilling values, enacting practices, focusing on people, creating a narrative and finding their place.
Identify the Problem
In order
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Instead of asking an applicant about a previous work situation and how they would have liked to handle it, they probe for how they did handle it. This enables the recruitment staff to see how people really act in a situation as opposed to how the applicant thinks they want the question answered.
Focus on People
Southwest airlines focuses on people at all times there is clear focus on the employees as well as the customers. Advertising is geared not only to the customer but internally as well. Creating a culture that believes a well-treated employee will provide a more memorable and dynamic level of customer service is a top priority.
Create a Narrative
For Southwest creating a narrative that shows the heart of the airline means to show the sense of humor that is so oft3en found within the organization. This can range from the open and fun atmosphere that can be observed while on any Southwest flight, to the increase of sales. Slogans are used to create this culture. When the airline expanded through much of the United States, they used “You are now free to fly about the country”, more recently they began using the slogan “want to get away”, igniting the dream of travel. Even when a slogan has created a business issue for proprietary wording Southwest CEO agreed to an arm wrestling match to determine
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What they did know was that they could provide a better service environment at a lower cost. While their reach may not be as far as Delta or United, they currently serve the lower 48 states with service to most major cities, as well as a few international flights. They do well delivering what may strive for, by not trying to be the biggest and baddest, but relying on the reputation and service they

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