Another night away from home sitting reading a magazine in a hotel restaurant on my own – the lonely life of the traveling salesman! Tonight is was the October 2010 copy of Fast Company that I had picked up in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago. The reason I purchased it was because I saw that on the cover they had a story on JetBlue.
Here is the quote that inspired me to write a blog post (I managed later to find the article online)
“We invented the in-flight experience 10 years ago,” Morrisson says, “and now we’re trying to do it again.” As the economy takes a toll on the industry, other airlines keep finding new frontiers in charging for things that used to be free, such as early boarding. Rather than follow suit, JetBlue is working with the Boston office of the design firm Ideo to add services that customers, namely the business travelers JetBlue hopes to attract, are willing to pay for. “This is huge for us,” she says, though she’s coy about the details. (The project won’t begin rolling out until next spring, by which time Steven “Two Beers, One Slide” Slater, the runaway flight attendant, will be a distant memory.) “Unlike a lot of airlines and businesses that have nothing to lose by making changes, we have 10 years of customer goodwill,” says Morrisson. “The foundation of everything we do is asking, How does this make people feel?”
It turns out the main person featured in the article is a fellow Australian working at JetBlue by the name of Fiona Morrisson, but what will be more interesting for readers here is that Ideo is the company I mentioned recently given its founder Tom Kelley spoke at Horizons on innovation and I’ve also mentioned this company before in relation to the work they did at Air New Zealand. I will be very interested to see what comes out of this engagement for JetBlue – I’m tipping something a litting more creative than advising them to start charging for the first checked bag!