Call Us Today: 845-463-3838

Southwest Airlines President Speaks on “Servant Leadership” & “Internal Customer Service”

Thanks to the magic of Twitter yesterday I came across this interview with the very unassuming president of Southwest Airlines, Colleen Barrett.

The interview is two years old but offers great insight into what makes Southwest a model of success in an industry that has so many of its competitors falling by the wayside or struggling to find a merger partner.

The key point in the interview, I believe, is when Barrett speaks about what I call “internal customer service.” Too many organizations focus on “external customer service” and don’t understand that employees who do not have a deep connection to their organization cannot provide excellent external customer service.

After watching the video it inspired me to create my “Champion Customer Service” model that I’ve been speaking about for years but never had a visual to show how it flows. This should make it pretty clear:


This model represents the direction of service in “champion organizations” that provides for “Champion Customer Service” of the external customers that generate the revenue necessary to sustain and grow a successful organization.

  1. It begins with a commitment to “internal customer service” whereby organization leaders create an environment in which internal service between employees is a priority.
  2. Happy employees serve customers happily and happy customers buy and return and refer others.
  3. This, in turn, makes for profitable, happy owners/shareholders, and
  4. Resources are reinvested back into the organization to continue to reinforce the model.

What do ya’ll think?

skip weisman, transforming leadership and workplace communication to deliver champion level results

There is 1 comment. Add yours.

  1. Julio Martinez

    I live in San Juan Puerto Rico and the airport culture here is very different from what you offer, is too bad you don’t fly here but if in the future you decide to expand, we will love to have you here. I’m a student at the Phoenix University and I’m presenting a project that involves your organization which I consider the best in the world. The internet
    has a lot information but to complete my project I need to know “what types of communication your organization uses for intern and externalcommunication. Thanks JM

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Claim Your Free REPORT:

"The Employee Motivation Equation"

A Simple 3-Part Formula that Inspires Employees to Contribute Better Than Ever:

Our Clients Include:

Inspired Audience Member Shares His Experience

“You really inspired me! Your keynote address gave me the guts to begin shouting from the mountaintop…

‘Hire me, I am good at what I do!’ ”

Mark Curtis
TV Anchor & Author

The City of Hartford MHIS Division

Satisfied Clients Speak

"The work Skip did with our Information Technologies Division transformed how we communicate and work together, including bringing us a new identity and name, as the city’s Metro Hartford Innovation Services Department.

Skip’s ability to customize his approach and bring flexibility to our specific needs, situation and unique work environment, gave us just what we needed, when we needed it. He’s been a pleasure to work with and brought our organization high-value and a measurable return on our investment."

Sabina E. Sitaru, PMP MISM
Chief Innovation Officer
The City of Hartford & Hartford City Schools