How much does a wave cost?

Leaving Montreal last week on business, I heard some passengers giggling and happened to look outside as we pulled away from the terminal. There was the Westjet ground crew, smiling and waving us on our way.

Westjet people are known to be somewhat more smiley than the sourpusses at our other airlines (especially Air-don’t-bother-me-Canada).. but what this really shows how even roles that may not be considered “customer-facing” actually are.

Is this a policy at Westjet? or just something the employees do for fun? I didn’t see them doing this in Edmonton, so maybe it’s a local thing.

One thing I know for sure, the people on my side of the plane took off with smiles on their faces, and may remember those waves the next time they book a flight. I know I’ll remember that I can give my money to friendly people, or to people I am bothering because I happen to be their client.

How much does NOT waving cost?

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3 Comments

  1. Nicolas says:

    I had quite an experience with WestJet too. It made me wonder if they’re faking it, but in the end it seemed honest and I had a good time. They wouldn’t be like that if they weren’t really happy at their job (or at least working on it).

  2. Allen says:

    My sister worked for WestJet, and was sent to Montreal when they were just opening up there. Because she could speak french.. (well kinda, being in Calgary for a few years she lost most of it) she did the job interviews. If the people did not smile, or show a good sense of humor they did not get hired. Now that maybe discrimination but it does seem to make a difference.

  3. Obviously, WestJet’s ‘style’ is part of the corporate culture. While I’m not a big fan of toilet paper races down the aisle, I do appreciate small gestures like these. If it’s part of WestJet’s HR policy to hire friendly people, all the better. You don’t have to be an extrovert to be friendly or thoughtful. I’m not looking for clownish behaviour. But the small touches go a long way to ensuring my return business.

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