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On June 2nd, United Airlines’ CEO, Oscar Munoz, will take center stage on Broadway at Gotham Hall to share with the world how United will “reimagine the way United customers fly” and “take flying to new heights.” The audience will be made up of VIP guests including United top-tier frequent fliers and selected media personalities who are being flown in especially for the extravaganza.
Although Oscar’s show will run in New York City, the truly main event is happening all week in Reston, VA at the negotiations table between United and the Association of Flight Attendants, which represents United’s flight attendants.
Will He Make It There or Anywhere?
The successful rollout of any new products and services is often heavily reliant on United’s flight attendants. Their buy-in will heavily influence whether product enhancements revealed in Oscar’s one-man-show ultimately lead to an era of glorious triumph or apocalyptic tragedy at United.
Although I have not seen the script, I’m sure Munoz’ product announcements will be accompanied by sentiment inspired by some of his recent statements to United frequent fliers —-
“As I travel our network meeting with employees, I see and feel a new energy and enthusiasm that I am calling the new spirit of United. This new spirit is the passion of our employees for what the airline can achieve, and we’re seeing it where you have said it matters most — getting you to the places you need to be comfortably and on time.” – Oscar Munoz
He Just Can’t Do It Alone
Flight attendants we’ve spoken to recognize the high expectations Munoz must achieve yet they’ve continued pulling for his success in raising morale and reshaping the United product. Some can’t help but fear he may repeat the mistakes of past United CEOs leading to an epic fall from grace.
Whether or not Munoz’s performance ultimately receives a standing ovation could ultimately be decided by United customers, the flight attendants they interact with and the middle management he has entrusted to negotiate with the AFA.