Delta offers industry-leading pay, largely as a result of profit sharing, and explicitly pegs that compensation goal to industry-leading performance. The airline’s two major advantages are:
- Operational performance. They cancel flights less and do a good job operating on time, but it goes beyond that, their TechOps is a profit center performing work for other airlines.
- Friendly and helpful staff. I largely limit this to Delta’s flight attendants and telephone agents (who may not be knowledgeable but do try to be helpful).
It’s possible to deliver good customer service in a union shop. Southwest does it, though they have the advantage of a long company culture emphasizing fun at work, along with an underdog story fighting for their survival at the outset. They have a clear mission statement and are willing to push out their worst performers.
Delta’s pilots and dispatchers are unionized. However Delta clearly benefits from having fewer unions.
The IAM is working to organize Delta’s flight attendants and fleet service workers. One of the stranger arguments they’ve made is that Delta managers have the discretion to waive attendance requirements when flight attendants get sick, one of the very things that unionized American Airlines flight attendants wish they had at their airline.
Delta has a counter-campaign. According to the airline a union is worth less to workers than a video game system.
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Personally I don't take sides in this argument. But… @delta clearly knows nothing about the known dangers of @fortnite addiction. Truly a debilitating condition. In countless double-blinded studies, it has been shown that for many, Fortnite and other games DO help many people overcome things like having to socialize, maintain personal hygiene, and be contributing members of society, but they should ONLY be played and used under the careful supervision of an experienced and trained professional gamer. Certainly not an airline…. #atc #flying #squawkdirtytome #delta #Fortnite
This poster didn’t go over well on twitter (NSFW). For strong performers, however, the airline is probably right. For workers who prefer not to perform, they’re better off investing in union protections and burrowing in for seniority.