retail news in context, analysis with attitude

by Kevin Coupe

It has gotten a lot of attention in the media that Delta, which consistently is rated as the best US airline, announced that it will pay its employees roughly two months of addition pay as a bonus - or about $1.6 billion. It's the largest amount that the company ever has paid out in bonuses, but it isn't an anomaly - for six years in a row, Delta has paid out more than $1 billion in bonus money after a strong performance.

But Inc. has a story pointing out that while the money is important, what may be even more critical to the company's culture is an attitude that actually reflects an employee-centric approach.

"In response to a LinkedIn post calling him a rock star, Delta CEO Ed Bastian responded with two short sentences: 'Appreciate the shout out...but Delta would be nothing without our 90,000 people. They deserve all the credit'."

Those are magic words, Inc. writes, because they are backed up by action/money.

They reflect an approach that a) praises the people on the front lines, b) rewards the people on the front lines, and c) empowers the people on the front lines to solve problems and suggest solutions.

These are incredibly important. And while the investor class - which apparently doesn't define the bottom line in a customer-facing business the same way Delta does - has suggested that the money used for such generous bonuses could be better paid out to stockholders - CEO Bastian has resisted these entreaties.

Y'know why?

It's because employees "deserve all the credit."

Delta says it. Delta means it. Delta's actions reflect it.

And that's should be an Eye-Opener to every customer-facing business.
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