In the Trenches: Changing up the Routine
I’m stubborn. Actually, I come from a long line of stubborn Snyder men, and that can be a good thing. It can also be a bad thing when it comes to making changes, so I’m trying to be very cognizant of not shooting myself in the foot when good ideas come up.
With new concierges and a new intern onboard, inevitably new ideas will follow. My gut reaction is always this: “But it’s working perfectly now, so why would we change?” I have to fight that reaction every time. See, regardless of where the idea comes from, I’m instantly skeptical about whether we would need to do it. That’s a double-edged sword.
Questioning new ideas is a good thing. We should make sure to put them through the gauntlet before going with them so that we don’t end up wasting time and money, but there’s a limit. If I end up questioning something too much and become too conservative, then some really good ideas will end up being pushed by the wayside. My guess is that it will happen at some point; I make plenty of mistakes. But that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t try as hard as possible to prevent it from happening.
One of the concierges in particular has been coming to me with a lot of ideas lately, and I’m really happy about that. He’s seeing the business with a fresh pair of eyes and has some good ideas about what could make things better. I’m already exploring a new method for commenting on trips (versus the standard email we use today). And I’m reviewing suggestions around how we label our trips to make sure that the information is as accessible as possible. These may seem like small issues, but they can have a measurable impact in the end.
I’m sure he has bigger ideas and others will too. I’m going to do my best to remain open to them as they come in.
Brett Snyder is President and Chief Airline Dork of Cranky Concierge air travel assistance. Snyder previously worked for several airlines, including America West and United, before leaving to create a travel search site for PriceGrabber.com. Snyder did his undergrad at George Washington and earned his MBA from Stanford.