"BRANDING" Yourself in Business Aviation -- A Different Type of Service

In recent years, we have all become much more aware of service, service culture and customer service. Service industries have become a fast growing sector in world economies. Services now account for a significant portion of the labor force in the United States. As we are all aware, aviation is a service industry. Most particularly, in Business Aviation.

Do our passengers/customers know that we understand how important they are to us? Is it shown to them in actions as our teams serve them along their travels? Our brands reside within the hearts and minds of our users/customers/passengers. It is the sum total of their experiences and perceptions, some of which we can influence, and some that we cannot. If you do not know or understand the role of the business aviation flight attendant or what the job actually entails.........., how can you expect to do this work with no error on your first shot at a trip??

A brand is the source of a promise to customers/ the flight department. What better way to establish a brand—your brand— than with impeccable and accountable service? Your particular expertise and flare!

The brand takes time to build—just like trust. These are very broad perspectives that are crucial to understand when assessing the use of Service as a company’s branding tool:

1. How does the staff/team view the brand/company? Do they "live it" in the work place?

2. How do the customers/passengers view the customer service of the company?

3. How do you reflect/model that personally and on a day to day basis?

4. Are your expectations for your passenger's conveyed to your vendors so they are following your flight department's SOP's?

The staff/team/flight department is going to be representing the brand. Are they onboard and aligned with creating an experience for each and every customer that will be consistent with excellent service? JC Penney once said, “It is the service that we are not obliged to give that people value most.”

By developing a business culture for yourself that adheres with the corporate personality of the company that you are flying for is what it is all about. A student asked me recently to help her create her brand........... Hence this piece. I told her only SHE can create that for herself. And she did! She attended our training then went to emergency training. You get ONE chance to make a first impression, and then create your personal BRAND with the client…… one that will make you professionally memorable, one that will get you called back and get you a position with that flight department…...

And again, remember, your brand is the reputation that you create for yourself in this industry once the aircraft door is shut and you are doing what you love to do. Being a professional corporate flight attendant!

In reality, this "Branding" equation transfers to pilots, FBO's, charter operations, brokers, manufacturers, aviation managers, chief pilots, S&D's, caterers, A&P's, limo company's, and actually everyone and anyone that touches our clients/passengers in some capacity. This is of course not in any way inclusive to just the third crew member/flight attendant.

Susan C. Friedenberg – President & CEO

Corporate Flight Attendant Training & Global Consulting

Philadelphia, PA USA