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Washington, D. FORM K. Mark One.

Southwest Airlines in 2008: Culture, Values, and Operating Practices

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To learn more, view our Privacy Policy. Log In Sign Up. Download Free PDF. SWA CAse. Daniel Diaz. Download PDF. A short summary of this paper. His business concept for the airline was simple: Attract passengers by flying convenient schedules, get passengers to their destination on time, make sure they have a good experience, and charge fares competitive with travel by automobile. In , Kelleher filed papers to incorporate the new airline and submitted an application to the Texas Aeronautics Commission for the new company to begin serving Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio.

Herb Kelleher led the fight on the company's behalf, eventually prevailing in June after winning two appeals to the Texas Supreme Court and a favorable ruling from the U. Supreme Court. Kelleher recalled, "The constant proceedings had gradually come to enrage me. There was no merit to our competitors' legal assertions.

They were simply trying to use their superior economic power to squeeze us dry so we would collapse before we ever got into business. I was bound and determined to show that Southwest Airlines was going to survive and was going into operation. Southwest also had the enviable distinction of being the only major air carrier in the United States that was consistently profitable, having reported a profit every year since From humble beginnings as a scrappy underdog with quirky practices that flew mainly to "secondary" airports rather than high-traffic airports like Chicago O'Hare, Dallas-Fort Worth, and New York's Kennedy airport , Southwest had climbed up through the industry ranks to become a major competitive force in the domestic segment of the U.

It had weathered industry downturns, dramatic increases in the price of jet fuel, cataclysmic falloffs in airline traffic due to terrorist attacks and economywide recessions, and fare wars and other attempts by rivals to undercut its business, all the while adding more and more flights to more and more airports.

Since , the number of passengers flying Southwest had increased from Prior to , traffic count data are for only United ights. Muse was an aggressive and self-confident airline veteran who knew the business well and who had the entrepreneurial skills to tackle the challenges of building the airline from scratch and then competing head-on with the major carriers. Muse was able to recruit a talented senior staff that included a number of veteran executives from other carriers.

He particularly sought out people who were innovative, wouldn't shirk from doing things differently or unconventionally, and were motivated by the challenge of building an airline from scratch. Muse wanted his executive team to be willing to think like mavericks and not be lulled into instituting practices at Southwest that imitated what was done at other airlines.

Southwest's Struggle to Gain a Market FootholdIn June , Southwest initiated its first flights with a schedule that soon included 6 round-trips between Dallas and San Antonio and 12 round-trips between Houston and Dallas.

Recruiting ads for Southwest's first group of hostesses headlined "Attention, Raquel Welch: You can have a job if you measure up. Over 30 of Southwest's first graduating class of 40 flight attendants consisted of young ladies who were cheerleaders and majorettes in high school and thus had experience performing skimpily dressed in front of people.

Most passengers on these flights were business travelers. Management's thinking was that many passengers did not drink during the daytime and that with most flights being less than an hour's duration it would be cheaper to simply give the drinks away than collect the money.

Later, when the company went public, it chose "LUV" as its stock-trading symbol. The minute turnaround became one of Southwest's signatures during the s and s. In later years, as passenger volume grew and many flights were filled to capacity, the turnaround time gradually expanded to 30 minutesbecause it took more time to unload and load passengers compared to a half-full plane with just 60 to 65 passengers.

Even so, the average turnaround times at Southwest during the period were shorter than the to minute turnarounds typical at other major airlines. With no advertising, the seat flight sold out. This led Muse to realize that Southwest was serving two quite distinct types of travelers in the Golden Triangle market: 1 business travelers who were more time-sensitive than price-sensitive and wanted weekday flights at times suitable for conducting business, and 2 price-sensitive leisure travelers who wanted lower fares and had more flexibility about when to fly.

Passenger traffic increased significantly-and systemwide onpeak and off-peak pricing soon became standard across the whole airline industry. Despite being the only carrier to fly into Houston Hobby, the results were spectacular-business travelers who flew to Houston frequently from Dallas and San Antonio found company's headquarters were located at Love Field.

The courts eventually ruled that Southwest's operations could remain at Love Field. A second battle ensued when rival airlines protested Southwest's application to begin serving several smaller cities in Texas; their protest was based on arguments that these markets were already well served and that Southwest's entry would result in costly overcapacity.

Southwest countered that its low fares would allow more people to fly and thus would grow the market. Again, Southwest prevailed, and its views about low fares expanding the market proved accurate. In the year before Southwest initiated service, , passengers flew from Harlingen Airport in the Rio Grande Valley to Houston, Dallas, or San Antonio; in the 11 months following Southwest's initial flights, , passengers flew to the same three cities.

Believing that Braniff and Texas International were deliberately engaging in tactics to harass Southwest's operations, Southwest convinced the U.

In February , Braniff and Texas International were indicted by a federal grand jury for conspiring to put Southwest out of business-a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act.

The application was vehemently opposed by local government officials and airlines operating out of DFW because of the potential for passenger traffic to be siphoned away from DFW. The opponents solicited the aid of Fort Worth congressman Jim Wright, then the majority leader of the U. House of Representatives, who took the matter to the floor of the House; a rash of lobbying and maneuvering ensued.

What emerged came to be known as the Wright Amendment of No airline may provide nonstop or through-plane service from Dallas Love Field to any city in any state except for locations in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. Southwest was prohibited from advertising, publishing schedules or fares, or checking baggage for travel from Dallas Love Field to any city it served outside the five-state "Wright Zone. The local and national media picked up the story of Southwest's offer, proclaiming the battle as a David versus Goliath struggle in which the upstart Southwest did not stand much of a chance against the much larger and well-established Braniff; grassroots sentiment in Texas swung to Southwest's side.

All these moves paid off. The resulting gains in passenger traffic enabled Southwest to report its firstever annual profit in More Legal and Regulatory HurdlesDuring the rest of the s, Southwest found itself embroiled in another round of legal and regulatory battles. Local officials were furious because they were counting on fees from Southwest's flights in and out of DFW to help service the debt on the bonds issued to finance the construction of the airport.

Southwest's position was that it was not required to move because it had not agreed to do so or been ordered to do so by the Texas Aeronautics Commission-moreover, the amendment was expanded in , when Alabama, Mississippi, and Kansas were added to the five-state zone; in , Missouri was added to the Wright Zone.

In , after a heated battle in Congress, legislation was passed and signed into law that repealed the Wright amendment beginning in The Emergence of a Combative, Can-Do Culture at SouthwestThe legal, regulatory, and competitive battles that Southwest fought in its early years produced a strong esprit de corps among Southwest personnel and a drive to survive and prosper despite the odds.

With newspaper and TV stories reporting Southwest's difficulties regularly, employees were fully aware that the airline's existence was constantly on the line.

Had the company been forced to move from Love Field, it would most likely have gone under, an outcome that employees, Southwest's rivals, and local government officials understood well.

According to Southwest's former president, Colleen Barrett, the obstacles thrown in the company's path by competitors and local officials were instrumental in building Herb Kelleher's passion for Southwest Airlines and ingraining a combative, can-do spirit into the corporate culture: 5 They would put twelve to fifteen lawyers on a case and on our side there was Herb. They almost wore him to the ground. But the more arrogant they were, the more determined Herb got that this airline was going to go into the air-and stay there.

The warrior mentality, the very fight to survive, is truly what created our culture. But Kelleher enjoyed practicing law, so while he agreed to become chairman of the board, he insisted that someone else be CEO. Putnam asked Kelleher to become more involved in Southwest's day-to-day operations, and over the next three years, Kelleher got to know many of the company's personnel and observe them in action.

This time, Southwest's board succeeded in persuading Kelleher to take on the additional duties of CEO and president. In the process, the company won more industry Triple Crown awards-for best on-time record, best baggage handling, and fewest customer complaintsthan any other U. While Southwest fell short of its on-time performance and baggagehandling goals in , it still led the domestic airline industry in customer satisfaction and received other awards and recognitions, including Best Domestic Airline for Customer Service, one of Executive A revenue passenger-mile is one paying passenger own 1 mile.

He earned his law degree at New York University, again graduating with honors and also serving as a member of the law review. After graduation, he clerked for a New Jersey Supreme Court justice for two years and then joined a law firm in Newark. Upon marrying a woman from Texas and becoming enamored with Texas, he moved to San Antonio, where he became a successful lawyer and came to represent Rollin King's small aviation company.

When Herb Kelleher took on the role of Southwest's CEO in , he made a point of visiting with maintenance personnel, to check on how well the planes were running, and talking with the flight attendants.

Kelleher did not do much managing from his office, preferring instead to be out among the troops as much as he could. His style was to listen and observe and to offer encouragement. Kelleher he often helped load bags on "Black Wednesday," the busy travel day before Thanksgiving. He knew the names of thousands of Southwest employees and was held in the highest regard by the employees.

When he attended a Southwest employee function, he was swarmed like a celebrity. Kelleher had an affinity for bold-print Hawaiian shirts, owned a tricked-out motorcycle, and made no secret of his love for smoking and Wild Turkey whiskey. He loved to make jokes and engage in pranks and corporate antics, prompting some people to refer to him as the "clown prince" of the airline industry. He once appeared at a company gathering dressed in an Elvis costume, and he had arm-wrestled a South Carolina company executive at a public event in Dallas for the right to use "Just Plane Smart" as an advertising slogan.

On one occasion, he reportedly told a group of veteran employees, "If someone says they're going to smack us in the face-knock them out, stomp them out, boot them in the ditch, cover them over, and move on to the next thing. That's the Southwest spirit at work. I think it's part of the Irish in me. It's like what Patton said, 'War is hell and I love it so. I've never gotten tired of fighting. While believing strongly in being prepared for adversity, Kelleher had an aversion to Southwest personnel spending time drawing up all kinds of formal strategic plans, saying, "Reality is chaotic; planning is ordered and logical.

The meticulous nit-picking that goes on in most strategic planning processes creates a mental straightjacket that becomes disabling in an industry where things change radically from one day to the next. Kelleher was a strong believer in the principle that employees-not customers-came first: 9You have to treat your employees like your customers.

When you treat them right, then they will treat your outside customers right. That has been a very powerful competitive weapon for us.

You've got to take the time to listen to people's ideas. If you just tell somebody no, that's an act of power and, in my opinion, an abuse of power. You don't want to constrain people in their thinking. Another indication of the importance that Kelleher placed on employees was the message he had penned in that was prominently displayed in the lobby of Southwest's headquarters in Dallas: flamboyant a personality as Kelleher.

Parker was seen as an honest, straight-arrow kind of person who had a strong grasp of Southwest's culture and market niche and who could be nice or tough, depending on the situation. When his appointment as CEO was announced, Parker said: 10 There is going to be no change of course insofar as Southwest is concerned.

Southwest Airlines in 2014: Culture, Values, and Operating Practices (CASE)

Southwest Airlines Co. As of [update] , Southwest carried the most domestic passengers of any United States airline. In late , Southwest began announcing a series of expansions to several new airports, such as Palm Springs International Airport , and the return to several previously exited airports such as Jackson—Medgar Wiley Evers International Airport. Three other airlines took legal action to try to prevent the company from its planned strategy of undercutting their prices by flying only within Texas and thus being exempt from various regulations. The lawsuits were resolved in , and in the airline began operating regularly scheduled flights between Dallas Love Field and Houston and between Love Field and San Antonio , and adopted the name Southwest Airlines Co. In , Southwest began operating flights to various additional cities within Texas, and in it began flying to adjacent states.

Southwest Airline capitalized on this fact to become a national airline Keller Southwest Airlines Reveals 5 Culture Lessons. Since Southwest does not have a business class they struggled to maintain a steady revenue from Business travelers. However, Southwest Airlines has always been my favorite airline to fly. Students also viewed. Begin slowly - underline the details and sketch out the business case study description map.

Embed Size px x x x x His business concept for the airline was simple: Attract passengers by flying convenient schedules, get passengers to their destination on time, make sure they have a good experience, and charge fares competitive with travel by automobile. In , Kelleher filed papers to incorporate the new airline and submitted an application to the Texas Aeronautics Commission for the new company to begin serving Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio. Herb Kelleher led the fight on the companys behalf, eventually pre-vailing in June after winning two appeals to the Texas Supreme Court and a favorable ruling from the U. Supreme Court. Kelleher recalled, The con-stant proceedings had gradually come to enrage me. There was no merit to our competitors legal asser-tions.


Southwest Airlines: Culture, Values and Operating Practices employees that was first in the airline industry (Arthur A. Thompson, ).


History of Southwest Airlines

Founded in to serve destinations in Texas , Southwest Airlines was initially prevented from operating, and saw long-haul flights from its original Dallas Love Field hub restricted by federal law for several decades. Despite these obstacles, Southwest has built a history of innovative business practices, and has grown to be one of the largest airlines in the United States and one of the largest low-cost carriers worldwide. Kelleher asserted that by staying within Texas, price controls and market regulations imposed by the federal Civil Aeronautics Board would not apply, and the airline could undercut competitors' prices. Supreme Court declined to review the case without comment, [5] vindicating Kelleher's opinion on the limits of federal market regulation. On March 29, , Air Southwest Co.

Founded in to serve destinations in Texas , Southwest Airlines was initially prevented from operating, and saw long-haul flights from its original Dallas Love Field hub restricted by federal law for several decades. Despite these obstacles, Southwest has built a history of innovative business practices, and has grown to be one of the largest airlines in the United States and one of the largest low-cost carriers worldwide. Kelleher asserted that by staying within Texas, price controls and market regulations imposed by the federal Civil Aeronautics Board would not apply, and the airline could undercut competitors' prices. Supreme Court declined to review the case without comment, [5] vindicating Kelleher's opinion on the limits of federal market regulation. On March 29, , Air Southwest Co.

History of Southwest Airlines

southwest airlines 2008 case study

Introduction The main task of this paper is conducting a research on the factors and instruments of motivating the workforce of the Southwest Airlines. Background of Southwest Airlines………………………………………….. Word count: Although the airline industry suffered greatly in the aftermath of September 11, Southwest was able to continue to hold strong. Explanation of Framework…………………………………………………2 Almost instantly, Southwest picked up a social channel where an individual was live streaming the entire event.

Case Study for Student Discussion. Southwest Airline is said to be the largest airline firm in the world and yet it charges low-fare costs to its large population of customers. Download full-text PDF Read full-text.

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    CASE STUDY – SOUTHWEST AIRLINES IN CULTURE, VALUES, AND OPERATING PRACTICES 1. Image of page 1. Group members Orapun Waivitlikit​.

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    3 I n , Southwest Airlines was the market share leader in domestic air into instituting practices at Southwest that imitated what was done at other airlines. Colleen Barrett, Southwest's President, Barrett began working with fit in with its culture and adequately embraced the company's cultural values.

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    1 Southwest Airlines in Culture, Values, and Operating Practices Pada akhir , Rollin King, seorang pengusaha d.

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