I’m not a frequent flyer. I might take six to eight flights a year.

When I have a choice, I fly American because I’ve had consistently good experiences with them over the past 30 years and my dad used to fly 100,000 miles a year with them.

I’ve been surprised to see them ranked so low in customer satisfaction ratings. However, as I said, I’m not a frequent flyer let alone a “road warrior.”

I returned from my annual trip to the Final Four and was on AA flight 820 from MIA to RDU (I had to fly from NOLA to MIA to get to RDU).

A lady in front of me was experiencing some discomfort, feeling faint or low blood pressure, nothing major I later found out.

The care, concern and compassion by one flight attendant, Angell Marie Keenan, blew me away and made American Airlines tops in providing outstanding customer service in my book.

One person showing true caring and compassion to one customer. That’s ultimately what customer service, and an outstanding customer experience, is about.

I’m sure American Airlines, and all other airlines, provide significant training for their flight attendants, just like doctors go to med school, et.al. However, the attitude of the person when they’re interacting with the customer, or the prospect, is everything.

If you are investing in, and empowering your employees, please share this story with them.

Ritz Carlton is famous for providing over-the-top customer service. Yesterday, American Airlines provided that level of service in one customer’s eyes due to the actions of a single flight attendant.

It was a very powerful scene and reinforces the importance of customer-facing employees showing care and compassion for the customer — a classic “moment of truth.”

What are you doing to instill this in your employees?

By the way, I did write a letter to the president of American Airlines telling him about Ms. Keenan’s actions and urging him to recognize her for the service she provided and the positive impression she made.




Tom Smith

Experienced marketing professional who has worked with more than 120 clients in 18 different vertical industries. ♦ Differentiate products and services by improving UX and delivering memorable CX to create an emotional connection to the brand. ♦ Obtain insights from analytics to solve business problems and drive revenue. ♦ Develop and implement marketing campaigns that double traffic and leads in three months. ♦ Certified Marketing Automation Professional ♦ Certified Voice of the Customer (VOC) Professional