Thursday, June 12, 2008

Is Your Culture Infectious?

At a conference in gorgeous Hamilton Island this morning I asked a packed room of around 400 people a question of opinion. I told them that the morning before I’d take two flights - one with Jetstar and one with Virgin Blue (both Australian domestic airlines). My question to them was which flight did they think I’d had more fun on? Their answer overwhelmingly that they thought I’d had more fun on the Virgin flight.

And they were of course right. When I hopped on the Virgin Blue flight I was called by my first name – off to a good start. And then because someone in that company a long time ago gave them permission to have fun and show their personality I got a little comedy routine as well as my flight.

Was the Jetstar flight in any way bad or did I get poor service? No (not this time). The flight was fine, but unmemorable in every way.

When Virgin Blue tell a plane load of people that we can’t bring fish products, fish fingers or mullet haircuts back home their culture infects people on that plane and leads to this overwhelming feeling that Virgin Blue are the “fun” airline such that a room full of 400 strangers know it instantly.

I’d love to think that in the companies I work with I’m constantly working towards a cultural state whereby a room with 400 strangers would be able to overwhelmingly pick my company as the one they’d had fun with too.

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By Kirsty Dunphey with No comments


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