I recently took a vacation to Cancun, Mexico with my girl friend. We flew on a major airline direct from Charlotte, North Carolina to Cancun and I have to admit that there were more idiot fliers than I have ever seen at one time. People were refusing to check in prior to the flight. Some were not willing to wait in the appropriate lines. Many attempted to board the aircraft out of turn. Folks were having issues finding their seats. And the parade of lunacy just continued.
Once seated however, I was witness to the most amazing woman. A flight attendant named Beth who was in charge without offending anyone. It was incredible. Through all of the bitching, moaning and whining about luggage, seat assignments and whether we were going to have a meal or headsets, she kept her head about her. This woman was able to field questions, place people in seats and placate the ignorant without taking a breath. She was the Wonder Woman of the air lines.
As I watched she handled each complaint as if she was teaching school to third graders. Never getting upset or demeaning those in violation, Beth moved throughout the cabin with grace. She yelled without raising her voice. She demanded without ordering. She suggested as if it was the idea of the passenger. At one point an angry flier told Beth that he wanted to change his seat assignment (on a sold out flight) and she needed to make it happen. Her response was a brilliant as it was simple. She said, “This plane isn’t going anywhere until we are all seated. Let’s see if we can work it out because we are all in this together” He was so stunned by her lack of confrontation that he settled down and did exactly what she suggested. It was great to watch her command the passengers.
Once we were in flight, I took the opportunity to compliment her on the skill. I suggested that I might have put someone in a head-lock if I were confronted with the same. And her response again stunned me. “Well, I truly love my job and what I do” It was that simple. She was going to enjoy what she did, with or without the benefit of the passengers. Talk about taking responsibility for yourself!
I love finding people like this. they give me a reason to look at my own life and I love my life. Bu this woman had it all together and I was in awe. So Beth if your reading this, great job and keep doing what you’re doing. And to the rest of us, let’s try to find that one perfect place where we too can say, “I love what I do”…
Love with no shame and ask with no fear