Don't Blame the Employees

Old Mar 18, 12, 11:15 am
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Don't Blame the Employees

It is now more than two weeks since the integration of the systems into one, and it is still a total disaster with incredible wait times for phone service, miles not posting, depleting of elites, limited upgrades, etc. After you wait on hold for one hour and you finally get a real person you can tend to dumb on that agent. It is a natural reaction, but please, remember, they did not create this monster of a mess. It is a natural reaction to yell, vent, or whatever on them, but that is not FAIR. They did not downgrade what it means to be an Elite flyer, they did not change the rules of posting miles, they did not chose to have too few agents on duty, they did not chose to make this a total mess. I was speaking to a supervisor at MP in Manilla after waiting 45 minutes on hold on the 1K line (who confirmed a long time to post miles) who told me the employees are really stressed out with the anger and frustration of the passengers. She said it is difficult just answering the phone. She said she is pregnant and feels so much stress for the last past two weeks.

It is not FAIR to take out our frustrations on the employees, they are only doing what they can.

Vent your frustration where it belongs - Jeff Smeisk and the Board of UA.

How many have sent "Jeff" a letter telling how displeased we are with him and what he has done? Do not take it out on the front line people, vent where it belong! JEFF
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Old Mar 18, 12, 11:30 am
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Originally Posted by TonyBurr View Post
It is not FAIR to take out our frustrations on the employees, they are only doing what they can.
I agree 100%. They've been put in an impossible situation.

Vent your frustration where it belongs - Jeff Smeisk and the Board of UA.
This just in: They. Don't. Care.

It's beyond obvious that very high-level decisions were made that the loss of elites' business will be made up for by (a) the volume of TODs, selling CC benefits, etc. and (b) cutbacks on elite benefits, particularly in the realm of customer service. Was it a right decision? Who knows. Lacking any hard aggregate data, certainly none of us does. For all I know SMI/J and friends will welcome the complaints of p-od elites if they think by getting rid of us they get rid of those whose business is net not worth retaining. Or they assume that regardless of the cutbacks, the grass ain't greener enough "over there" and that for every elite who bolts, another will come.

How many have sent "Jeff" a letter telling how displeased we are with him and what he has done? Do not take it out on the front line people, vent where it belong! JEFF
If and when ualsurvey.com is back on line, I will assume UA wants to know what we think. Otherwise, see above: they don't care. Let your dollars do the walking and the talking...
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Old Mar 18, 12, 11:45 am
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Originally Posted by TonyBurr View Post
I was speaking to a supervisor at MP in Manilla after waiting 45 minutes on hold on the 1K line (who confirmed a long time to post miles) who told me the employees are really stressed out with the anger and frustration of the passengers. She said it is difficult just answering the phone...

It is not FAIR to take out our frustrations on the employees, they are only doing what they can.
You're absolutely right, and we should remember that while it is disappointing to see Jeff pee on loyal customers like this, it is absolutely unconscionable for him to throw his own employees to the wolves -- making them face waves of frustrated, furious pax with no tools or training to help. I can't imagine what morale is like in the call centers. I can see well enouh what it's like in the airports and airplanes.

The possible silver lining to all this is that it seems to be reawakening the militant streak in UA employees, with potential apocalyptic chaos ahead -- Jeff slaughtered by his own troops, as it were, with labor strife, SFH 2.0, you name it. Which would have high entertainment value for me as I will not be a UA customer when it happens.
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Old Mar 18, 12, 11:48 am
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We shouldn't blame all the employees, but some seem to enjoy the new way of treating customers a bit too much.
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Old Mar 18, 12, 11:54 am
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Originally Posted by Plane-is-home View Post
We shouldn't blame all the employees, but some seem to enjoy the new way of treating customers a bit too much.
I cant believe I am saying this but I tend to agree. I have flown 6 segments this weekend and there some almost seem happy to tell you "that's the way it is now". I think UA needs to reinforce that while it is not the employee's fault it is is most certainly not the CUSTOMERS fault.
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Old Mar 18, 12, 11:58 am
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By the time that they answer the phone, I can hear the frustration in their voices, and I make it a point to be very polite and definitely not cop an attitude and infer that being a 1K 2MM flyer makes me important and smarter than the average bear. I have many friends that work for UA and they are just as concerned about the future of this airline and their continued employment going forward as we do about our precious miles!

Years ago my wife worked for CO in L.A. and when Texas Air took them over (so to speak) many people were given jobs in Houston. Six months later, after picking their brains and families were relocated to Texas, nearly everyone of them were fired. We did not take this offer and thankfully so. It's been many, many years ago however I still don't don't trust any of these CO Suit's any more now than I did back then, PERIOD!!!

Can't blame these employees for anything that this merger has caused to inconvenience its customers.
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Old Mar 18, 12, 11:58 am
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Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9B176 Safari/7534.48.3)

It seems the answer for everything is "Well that takes longer now with the new system" as if we were supposed to *expect* downgrades in every aspect of service.

Seriously, UA should have been way more forthcoming about how the new site will lack functionality that we have been used to for years. Having to call in every time to get upgrades and mileage redeposited is an insult
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Old Mar 18, 12, 12:07 pm
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It's the employees who worked to put this system in place. It wasn't done by robots or aliens.
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Old Mar 18, 12, 12:08 pm
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Originally Posted by demkr View Post
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9B176 Safari/7534.48.3)

It seems the answer for everything is "Well that takes longer now with the new system" as if we were supposed to *expect* downgrades in every aspect of service.

Seriously, UA should have been way more forthcoming about how the new site will lack functionality that we have been used to for years. Having to call in every time to get upgrades and mileage redeposited is an insult
I, like everyone else, it seems, have been a victim as of late, but we're talking about not taking it out on nearly EVERY employee we come in contact with, not about how screwed up the merger is going or even how crappy this airline has or forever may become...

I'm not critiquing any part of your comment, however making a blanket statement that UA is somehow EVERY employee, who has to also put up with this nonsense, is not fair in its entirety, either.

I think that you would certainly agree with me on that, would you not bmvaughn?
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Old Mar 18, 12, 12:15 pm
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Originally Posted by bmvaughn View Post
It's the employees who worked to put this system in place. It wasn't done by robots or aliens.
The line employees who are bearing the brunt of customer anger had nothing to do with deciding which policies would be adopted by the new management team.
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Old Mar 18, 12, 12:18 pm
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Let me add that applies to UAInsider as well. She/they didn't select the platforms, didn't write the messed-up programming etc...
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Old Mar 18, 12, 12:19 pm
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Originally Posted by halls120 View Post
The line employees who are bearing the brunt of customer anger had nothing to do with deciding which policies would be adopted by the new management team.
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Old Mar 18, 12, 12:22 pm
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Originally Posted by Alpha Golf View Post
Let me add that applies to UAInsider as well. She/they didn't select the platforms, didn't write the messed-up programming etc...
But has helped spreading the misinformation
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Old Mar 18, 12, 12:24 pm
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Originally Posted by TonyBurr View Post
It is not FAIR to take out our frustrations on the employees, they are only doing what they can.

Vent your frustration where it belongs - Jeff Smeisk and the Board of UA.

How many have sent "Jeff" a letter telling how displeased we are with him and what he has done? Do not take it out on the front line people, vent where it belong! JEFF
You could even buy 1 share of UA stock and make your voice heard at the next Stockholder's Meeting.

It's got to be extra tough on the men and women of United who are just trying to pay their bills and make the best lemonade they can.

I spoke with a United Club representative last week and she seemed relieved that I wasn't going to berate her.
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Old Mar 18, 12, 12:26 pm
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It was the BOD and Jeff Smisek who caused this!

Let's not blame any line employees. This decision is the responsibility of Jeff Smisek and the board of directors. The former CIO K. Halbert told Smisek that this was a bad plan, Smisek disagreed and Halbert went to the B.O.D. to explain it was a bad plan. The board fully supported Smisek and Halbert was fired with a 3 million dollar non disclosure agreement.

This is fully the board's fault, they bet on the wrong plan and the wrong person.
If a month or a year from now, this looks like a great decision then Smisek and the board deserve all the credit for forcing this decision against their CIO's advice. If it continues to be a disaster for the long term they have to accept the fact that they made a large mistake that will cost the stockholders money, as good customers and employees leave United.
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