July 28, 2010

Good Communication Helps Southwest Airlines Fly High

Looking for a great place to work? Some companies stand out above others. If you ask people who happy with where they work, you’ll find they all value certain characteristics. Sometimes it is more than just being paid well, receiving good benefits and being treated fairly by their bosses.

There is one word that comes up often in employee surveys at happy companies: communication. Good communication starts at the top. Do the CEO and top managers communicate effectively with their employees? Is the entire organization on the same page? Does management value input from employees?

The career website Glassdoor.com put out a list of the Best Places to Work in America in 2010. They call the top 50 the “Employees’ Choice Awards” because the winners are based on voluntary employee surveys filled out on Glassdoor.com.

Southwest Airlines was ranked number one in employee satisfaction. While the results of the survey may not be totally scientific, a sampling of the anonymous comments from Southwest employees shows how they value strong communication from the company.

  • “Southwest is upfront in its communications to the employees and will tell it like it is either good or bad”
  • “Communication from upper management is great”
  • “ Besides all the perks, Southwest really tries to take care of their employees with good communication materials, open discussions between upper management and junior employees”
  • “Good two way communication must remain a must to keeping the culture strong”

The airline industry has been hit especially hard by the current economic downturn. Southwest Airlines knows that keeping the communication lines open and flowing with its employees is key to weathering the storm.

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