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United CFO Rainey Implies Certain Elites were "Over Entitled".

United CFO Rainey Implies Certain Elites were "Over Entitled".

Old May 19, 12, 12:02 pm
  #16  
 
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This is an extremely foolish statement by the new United CFO, and it will anger many elites when they hear it. It also helps to explain the large number of UA elites status matching to AA. One of the keys to successful business is to retain exisitng customers and keep your best customers happy.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:04 pm
  #17  
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Originally Posted by demkr View Post
It's bewildering why the guy said that stuff... why would anyone insult their customers like that?
Because they don't matter any longer? No doubt I was in the over entitled group as a 1MM, and UA corporate has been successful in getting me to move all my business to AA. They don't seem as entitlement-focused over there.

Originally Posted by chitownflyer View Post
One of the keys to successful business is to retain exisitng customers and keep your best customers happy.
Another is guerilla marketing. I think AA scored a coup over UA while they weren't paying attention.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:04 pm
  #18  
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Disgusting attitude from CO exectutives towards their customers who are loyal!

Originally Posted by demkr View Post
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It's bewildering why the guy said that stuff... why would anyone insult their customers like that?
I can't believe he still has a job after this speech!

Last edited by iluv2fly; May 19, 12 at 4:58 pm Reason: merge
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Old May 19, 12, 12:04 pm
  #19  
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As I suspect United will remove the webcast link, does anyone know how to attach the 30 second comment to this link? It is about 11 minutes and 40 second into the webcast.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:11 pm
  #20  
 
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At least he did not call us Muppets...


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Old May 19, 12, 12:14 pm
  #21  
 
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So that 2K I was going to spend on a Q fare to London next year? Its going somewhere else. You
Don't insult customers- let alone those who are frequent customers
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Old May 19, 12, 12:14 pm
  #22  
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I know many of your are incensed, and perhaps legitimately so.

Then again, I believe this was an honest statement of the business model at CO, namely that high-end frequent flyers are not worth the company's energy if they are buying a lot of cheap seats and require a costly and unwieldy infrastructure to manage them.

Why would UaCo be excited about a 1K who achieves his status on the least expensive fares and then expects constant perks such as free upgrades, a dedicated CS line, and semi-official exemptions from fees and rules?

UaCo would just as soon fill those same seats with equally cheap kettles who expect nothing in return and might even occasionally spend some hard cash (even if only ToD's) to sit in FC. If a kettle needs to change a ticket, or do SDC, he or she is paying for it at full dollar value. If they want to sit in E+, they're paying for it, etc.

I'm not saying the CO approach is right, but that's their business model.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:15 pm
  #23  
 
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Clear insight into what current management is discussing and/or implementing in their senior leadership meetings.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:17 pm
  #24  
 
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UA was "over entitled" to the 2K I was about to spend for a flight to London in Y.

Originally Posted by TWA Fan 1
I know many of your are incensed, and perhaps legitimately so.

Then again, I believe this was an honest statement of the business model at CO, namely that high-end frequent flyers are not worth the company's energy if they are buying a lot of cheap seats and require a costly and unwieldy infrastructure to manage them.

Why would UaCo be excited about a 1K who achieves his status on the least expensive fares and then expects constant perks such as free upgrades, a dedicated CS line, and semi-official exemptions from fees and rules?

UaCo would just as soon fill those same seats with equally cheap kettles who expect nothing in return and might even occasionally spend some hard cash (even if only ToD's) to sit in FC. If a kettle needs to change a ticket, or do SDC, he or she is paying for it at full dollar value. If they want to sit in E+, they're paying for it, etc.

I'm not saying the CO approach is right, but that's their business model.
So what is exactly the point of having an elite program then? What's the incentive to fly 100K miles?

Last edited by iluv2fly; May 19, 12 at 5:01 pm Reason: merge/edit
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Old May 19, 12, 12:20 pm
  #25  
 
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Someone PLEASE make up t-shirts and luggage tags that say

Ex "Overentitled" United Customer

So we can wear and display them at the airport. I'll buy 10. Let's also buy that domain name ex-overentitledUAcustomer.com and start listing our names.

Theses guys are so insulated in their nickle and diming world they forgot they are running a business that needs return customers.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:22 pm
  #26  
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Originally Posted by demkr View Post
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So what is exactly the point of having an elite program then? What's the incentive to fly 100K miles?
They have the best network and the 787 is coming soon!
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Old May 19, 12, 12:26 pm
  #27  
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Originally Posted by SFO777 View Post
Obviously not using a teleprompter...

Starts at about 11:50...
"...Additionally, we also changed our Mileage Plus program, some of the benefits that, uh, accrued to the members. Uh, we, uh, we had certain groups in this group were over entitled if you will. Uh, and now, uh, we have realigned the benefits of that program with what the, the, the customers and, and, program, um, um, the participants are actually providing to the airline, and, and this is a good change going forward..."
No prompter, sure. But I think what's most instructive in that excerpt, and perhaps the crux of the entire issue, is the following phrase (I removed the pauses for ease of comprehension):

"...we have realigned the benefits...the participants are actually providing to the airline, and, and this is a good change going forward..."

It's not about what benefits the program provides to the customer, it's about what benefits the customer provides to the program.

That's the key right there.

If a 1k is achieving his status on $300 round trip transcons and then expecting routine upgrades, dedicated CS (1K line), exemption for change fees and rules, the customer is providing no benefit to the program, quite the contrary, in fact.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:26 pm
  #28  
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No surprise.

Even not saying it, CO's behavior has made it clear they don't give a rats patootie about Elites. After all, United spent a decent amount of effort to stroke the egos of elites so they felt nice, squishy and LOYAL to united, directing spend there. Being realistic, what % of elites are flying on L fares 100k a year to get 1K? No more than 10% I'd guess. We do know that CO considers the SWU expense to be unacceptably high.... (but they control R class, so you can't get it if they think they'll sell the seat, so the real cost is almost nothing.).
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Old May 19, 12, 12:27 pm
  #29  
 
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Originally Posted by SFO777 View Post
Obviously not using a teleprompter...

Starts at about 11:50...
"...Additionally, we also changed our Mileage Plus program, some of the benefits that, uh, accrued to the members. Uh, we, uh, we had certain groups in this group were over entitled if you will. Uh, and now, uh, we have realigned the benefits of that program with what the, the, the customers and, and, program, um, um, the participants are actually providing to the airline, and, and this is a good change going forward..."
And to add insult to injury, he touts all the great benefits of CO's SHARES system which is in many regards much less advanced than the system United used before the merger.
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Old May 19, 12, 12:28 pm
  #30  
 
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Originally Posted by chinatraderjmr View Post
I just listened to the first 15 min and had to stop. EXACTLY what I've been saying. They LOVE SHARES and are doing exactly what there business plan is. "over entitled". I love that line. Did he write it while sitting on his corp jet?
I had to stop around the same time - when he started equating "upgrades" with "defects" (twice, for effect). I now understand a bit more about the mindset of the arrogant and ignorant kids who began by dismantling CO and now are doing the same to UA.
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