The American Way?

Two weeks ago, I spent the better part of three days returning from the Final Four tournament (a distant memory now – which might actually be a good thing since both of my teams lost)! I was a victim of the American Airlines failed inspection fiasco. Apparently the airline and the FAA got lazy about making mandatory inspections because it was easier not to do them and to focus on other more pressing issues. Of course, when the whistle was blown, the majority of the fleet was grounded. It was truly an unbelievable experience. Every day we got rescheduled on another American flight, and every day it would get canceled. You can only imagine the colorful talk and lost business from the New Yorkers!

It made me think, am I running my business the American way? Sometimes, it’s just simpler and less costly to ignore the upkeep. For instance, think branding reinforcement. You think people know you and your company, so you don’t need to invest in reminding them. Then one day you realize you haven’t heard from someone in a while, you call and discover he/she really has forgotten about you (hard to imagine, I know). And to make things worse, sometimes they’ve even moved on to someone else. Is it worth losing a customer over not “doing the maintenance”?

The American fiasco could have been avoided. Yes, it can be an effort to do the maintenance. But as we witnessed (or experienced), it pays to invest now to assure the preservation of your business. And we also have to remember, sometimes the American way isn’t the only way.
All my best,


“A man surprised is half beaten.”   
Thomas Fuller

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