I flew back from Canada today, and it was quite an exhausting day. I ended up going through Seattle to Tokyo, and onto Beijing. It was a good reminder of the benefits of having your business, and that is that not having to travel so much. It was a good feeling coming back, since most of my personal stuff, was nearly settled and I was able to move on with all the cool business plans.
But, I still have a whole full week worth of work, to get perspective on the settlement, from different points of view, to make sure that whatever I grew to, does not have a negative impact in the future, from the investor point of view, from the corporate structure point of view, and also from the personal side.
So, next week, will be a busy one, with lots of one-on-one meetings, looking after a large number of issues, to make sure that redstores.com, will be able to move forward as quickly as possible.
On a personal note, I was flying in United first class, and one of the things that I noticed is that all the stewardesses, are in their 50s or 60s, all very big women, and in some ways, no longer truly focus on the customer. This is quite a contrast to flying on the Asian airlines, where it seems they pick all the young pretty girls to work in the business and first class, and those girls TRULLY focus on the customer. I guess what I saw happening here was the fact that the union is providing the routes to the most senior stewardesses, and hence the drift of all the older, stewardesses to the premium classes.
You would expect that level of service given their experience would be through the roof, however is quite easy to pick up the fact that their jobs are safe and secure, and that very few things in touch them. And that reflects in their attitudes, the way they speak to customers in the level of service they are providing. So, when you look at the Asian airlines, the level of service in business and first, it is truly an amazing experience. However, when the unions are theinvolved, the level of performance from various people decreases significantly, since there is no longer incentive.
Strangely, I had thought about the impact of these big stewardesses on the cost of the airline, since some of them were quite large, and I thought about the extra fuel costs that the airlines are occurring and flying these experienced large women around the world, that are providing mediocre service, and yet not being able to fix that due to unions and seniority tables etc.
Overall, looking at Asia, it seems that is truly where the game is at, simply by comparing the quality of airports, lounges. You can see the huge disparity between West, and the new East. For example, even my favorite airport in the US, San Francisco, pales in comparison to Tokyo or even Korea. So, if we just look at the airports as a representation of the growing nations.
So, it feels great to be in the place that is moving out and growing, and is able to achieve such amazing things, and where it feels like the future is that.