Entries by Fred Van Bennekom

TSA Blames Passengers for Missed Flights

TSA (US airport security screeners) frequently tell us during busy times to arrive at the airport extra early. Early arrival does NOT increase capacity. If everyone arrives 2 hours early, then you are no more likely to make your plane than if everyone arrives 1 hour early. Arriving early just creates more congestion, but now TSA can turn the blame to you for missing your flight. Airport capacity management is the issue!! If only journalists would ask the right questions…

Making the Case for Service Recovery Strategies — Customer Retention

The goal of service recovery is to identify customers with issues and then to address those issues to the customers’ satisfaction to promote customer retention. However, service recovery doesn’t just happen. It is a systematic business process that must be designed properly and implemented in an organization. Perhaps more importantly, the organizational culture must be supportive of the central tenant of service recovery strategies — that customers are important and their voice has value.

Misleading (or Lying) With Survey Statistics

Survey questionnaire design has a critical impact on the value of the data generated by the survey program. The survey scale design in particular can skew the responses generated to create almost perfect “top box scores.” This article examines the Ritz Carlton survey, a transactional survey, and shows how the scale design impacts the value of the findings.

Bribes, Incentives, and Video Tape (er, Response Bias)

Incentives are part of virtually every email request to take a survey. Recently, I saw this taken to its logical extreme. I was blatantly offered a bribe to give high scores. This article will cover the pros and cons of incentives. Incentives are a two-edged sword. But this experience highlights in the extreme the risks to validity inherent in offering incentives. Are the data real?

Service Recovery at United Airlines

Effective service recovery at airlines should be second nature given how much practice they get, but at United, the bromides were plentiful, but meaningful explanations were sorely lacking. This article examines United’s service recovery efforts in the contexts of a service recovery model.

Employees Strike in Support of a CEO?

Employees strike against CEOs all the time, but have you ever heard of employees going on strike in support of a CEO? Employees at the Market Basket supermarket chain in greater Boston have done just that in support of Arthur T. Demoulas, and customers are supporting the boycott. This is an odd event.