Southwest Airlines Essay

1064 words - 5 pages

Southwest Airlines

Early in his career as CEO, Kelley stuck with the mold that was given to him. When he did make changes, the changes didn’t affect anyone who worked at Southwest. They were still the number one airline and still paid their employees the highest salary out of all the other airline companies. As the company's leader, Kelly said he strives to balance three important areas of focus for the company: low cost, customer service, and focus on its people. The strong customer service was already embedded into the company when he started at Southwest in 1985. Kelley said, communication is the biggest key in being a leader. Kelly, who previously served as CFO, is an ...view middle of the document...

Much of that competition stems from Southwest’s own success in creating the domestic low-fare market. They only fly 737s, which made paying mechanics much more cost efficient.
Gary Kelly then decided to acquire Air Tran. Southwest Airlines purchased Air Tran for 1.4 billion dollars. Kelley sees Southwest in the international market by acquiring Air Tran. Southwest had a method and was the only profitable airline. They flew domestic routes and it obviously worked, so why change what is working? Kelly obviously sees a marketing strategy that will profit Southwest Airlines. Lets hope he is right. By purchasing Air Tran means that they will be flying Air Trans Boeing 717s. This means that they will have to spend more money flying two different types of aircraft. They will have to pay mechanics to work on each of the different aircraft. They will also have to purchase spare parts for their new aircraft, which they did not before because they only flew one type of aircraft and only had to purchase spare parts for one aircraft. I think that the purchase Air Tran was out of choice and not by necessity. At some point yes you do need to expand, but what Southwest has been doing for so many years has worked for them. According to Kelley, Southwest must continue to grow and evolve. He also states “You can not be what you were in 1995.” I think this is true in a way, but Southwest has evolved over the years.
My father is a captain for Southwest Airlines so I had the unique opportunity in hearing his thoughts over this subject. I wanted to get his opinion about working for Southwest and also the decision to acquire Air Tran. He said that he loves working for Southwest because they are a laid back company and the management lets the employees tell them when they think something is wrong. He said that everyone he has talked to loves working for Southwest. Everyone wants to work for Southwest. He loves the customer...

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