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Sayin' it Loud - Sayin' it Proud

mhennes
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Last week, I was out to dinner with a very good friend of mine. We were celebrating her birthday at one of our favorite restaurants, and after dinner, we decided to continue the evening at our favorite watering hole. In what could have been a "Wanna get away?" moment for a very nice young man standing next to us, my friend found herself dampened by the drink he spilled in her direction. After we assured him that no permanent damage had been done, we made introductions, met some of his friends, and in the natural course of small talk, the question "So, where do you work?" came up. Years ago, in my life before Southwest Airlines, I worked at "A Major Retailer." During my eight years there, I held Supervisory and Manager positions in fourteen different departments. (On more than one occasion working the phones as the Manager of Customer Serivce, it was suggested that I try to perform a physically impossible act.) When I was at any kind of social gathering - holiday party for my spouse, backyard barbeque with the neighbors, or some other place where one faces that eternal conversation starter (or ender), I would cringe at the question "So, where do you work?" because my reply would inevitably be followed by a story. Everyone seemed to have a story. A bad story. My outside hope would be for an inappropriate request for the use of my employee discount instead of the bad story - it would be so much easier then to smile and politely change the subject. Anyway--here we were, blotting my friend's sleeve with the hope of drying it out a little quicker, and when asked about my employer, I didn't hesitate before replying that I worked for Southwest. And while the drink spiller confessed he flew another AAirline more often, our hearts immediately went to his friend who--instead of displaying some plutonium American Express card to impress us--pulled out his Rapid Rewards Visa Card and started in on how much he loves to fly Southwest! So, we spent a little time trading stories - good stories about his travels, runway configurations, and a presentation he had given in which Southwest was the topic. And I do believe his next drink was on us - courtesy of a Southwest Visa Card. Yes, Derrick, I am a SWA geek too - and proud of it. I really hope you have great stories to tell about your job, and your employer - and if you don't always, I understand. Just watch the elbows of the people around you. And wear something that dries quickly, just in case.
31 Comments
drew
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I'd have better stories to tell about my job if my work address was 2702 Love Field Dr. *cough* 😄
chuchoteur
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What a way to meet somebody! sometimes, fate works in wonderful ways :o) Southwest people are really lucky to work for such a caring employer, and I am sure that they are aware of it as well! And anybody who only has bad stories to tell... maybe it's time to move on and find your Southwest... it sometimes takes courage, but it is well worth it in the end! I am extremely fortunate to work for a good company too, and we have plenty of good/funny/positive stories to tell too! :o))
Matthew_Skok
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Nothing like a shameless RR Visa plug, eh?
Ben9
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"AA"irlines none to subtle are you??? Of course I'm sure that SWA is far better than most other AAirlines....Unless you happen to be well enough off that you can pay for first-classs. I think only First-Class would be better than Southwest and other jetCompetators.
Robin9
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Hey Matthew.... I am an employee and I shamelessly plug my RR Visa through every card reader that I have to use to pay for something with. I have even earned my first free ticket cause there is nothing like flying with a confirmed ticket :o). Robin Oklahoma City Reservation Center
Rich
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MER~ LUV'd your story! It's great to hear how SWA stories come up most everywhere. I too being an SWA GEEK & very PROUD of it have many stories like yours. One that comes to mind is from church. A man one row in front of me was getting out his offering & I couldn't help but notice his RAPID REWARD card showing from his wallet! So as we were leaving church (though I did not know him) I told him "Thanks for being an SWA RR member". He responded "WoW you are good how did you know that is: my airline of choices, " It's MY ARILIINE"? I felt like I needed a "Get AWAY", because I had to confess that I saw it in his wallet. He chuckled, I said I Thank you because I work for SWA! He responded with: Are you working my flight next week to the West coast, I hope so." I'm not for sure,but ya never know. I concluded with Thanks for "Exercising YOUR freedom to move about the country with us at Southwest! " I wish you "Blues Skies & gentle Breezes!" in the SPIRIT of Southwest i am ~ Rich C
pcerda
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PLUTONIUM American Express? How can I be down with THAT?!?!? "The card that glows at night....It's the bomb!" Jedi Blog Master with a nuclear credit card....
joe-mdw-plane-d
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Better use tongs while you hold that card Paco! The white zone is for the immediate loading and unloading of passengers. There is no stopping in the red zone. Ding! boy Joe
pcerda
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Joe, Shall I ask Homer J. Simpson for help with nuclear credit cards? I'm sure he'd know! Jedi Blog Master
blusk
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Great post Mary. My wife works for a "major retail chain," and whenever anyone makes a purchase with an SWA Rapid Rewards Visa, she always thanks them for flying Southwest. Ding Boy and Jedi Blog Master, I think those plutonium cards have been dipped in the reactor onboard USS Blog Boy's ship. Blog Boy
joe-mdw-plane-d
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Jedi Blog master and blog boy, Yes! But homer is too busy eating doughnuts. Blog boy says, "Smithers, get me some more candycorn." Ding! boy Joe
FriendofBlogBoy
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Mary, That is a terrific story! I've known people who shared your reluctance to reveal where they work for just the reason you've given -- the admission was usually followed by a negative story. However, you are quite fortunate to be able to tell people proudly who you work for without fear of some punch in the nose or long explanation about what your employer 'did' to them! Who knows, maybe one day, folks like Leah and I will be able to join you in making the same declaration! I miss STL! :( Kim EBB
John29
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About 15 years ago my travel agent booked me on a Southwest flight to Las Vegas from Burbank. Never flying Southwest before, I did not know about the seating and as usual assumed my travel agent got me an aisle seat. To my surprise, when I got to the check in counter 20 minutes prior to flight I was greeted with a card with a high number which got me a middle seat at the rear of the plane. At this point I was not really impressed with Southwest Airlines and figured that I would not fly them again after this trip. When the plane landed in Las Vegas, knowing that I would be one of the last off the plane, I just sat while everybody scrambled to the door. The rear door opened and a cleaning crew came in and proceeded to pick up trash, put seatbelts in place and so on. I then noted that from the front of the plane another cleaning crew was active. There was a difference between the cleaning crew at the rear the crew at the front of the plane. The crew at the front consisted of the pilots, gate agent and flight attendants. I thought this to be strange and jokingly asked the pilot if they were in some kind of a hurry. The answer was something like Ã
Phil_Willman
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Great story John! Thank you for sharing it with us. You hit the nail right on the head. Southwest is truly a collection of individuals who have come together for a common purpose and to achieve a common goal--to be the BEST Customer Service Company in the country. Oh yeah, and we'll fly a few planes around too, allowing America the Freedom to "Move About the Country." Thank you for recognizing our commitment our Customers and to each other. We truly are a Family, of which each and every Customer is a part. After all, we're always glad to see you again! And thank you for being a Stockholder! I'm guessing you've realized a little return on that investment.....
Francisco_Delga1
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My friend has a United "MILEAGE" Visa card... boo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I give him a hard time. If he would only use Southwest rapid rewards "we reward you based on trips not miles" visa he could get back to the east coast faster. We travel a lot since we are both in the Navy, but for some reason i have already recieved two award tickets compared to his well zero.. :( USS BLOG BOY
Sue5
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Well I too work for Swa and I work in reservations. I just wanted to say its great to hear these stories. I have a funny story that would put a smile on your face. I was booking a reservation the other day for this lady that has never traveled before and she had asked me not to put her by a window seat cause she just had her hair done..... That had made my day hearing that. So only thing I could do was reassure her that our windows dont roll down.... Thanks to all our Passengers we really appreciate you... We love you ,,,
John29
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Phil, The return on investment has been good. My daughter thanks you for the car she got from her extended Southwest Airlines family.
Keaukina
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My husband and I used to collect other airline's airline "miles", but we never were able to use them for travel (do the other airlines set aside only one seat per flight for "frequent flyer" travel ???), so they were useless. We've each had a SWA RR Visa card since 2002 and we love the free trips we earn. We've never had a problem getting the exact flight we wanted, even to New Orleans at Mardi Gras time! Your Rapid Rewards program is terrific, and the Visa card makes it even more wonderful. The fact that we can allow close friends and family members to fly on our vouchers has been helpful, too. We were able to fly a friend to visit my mother before she died, in 2003. Thanks for having such a unique, user-friendly program. We LUV Southwest Airlines!
Leah4
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I'd LUV to invest stock in Southwest. How do you go about it? 🙂
Phil_Willman
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Leah, Simply send some cash to Southwest Airlines, attn: Brian Lusk, Love Fie......whoops! Sorry, that's where the candy corn is shipped to.... Seriously though, I really have no idea about the best method. Other than working here of course (you'll be here soon, I'm sure!). I'll have to defer to the investing gurus out here in the blogosphere....anyone?....Bueller?....
joe-mdw-plane-d
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I'm not an investment guru, but try this out Leah. http://www.southwest.com/investor_relations/fs_stock_information.html Hope this helps. It's raining, it's pouring, Ding fares are snoring. Ding! boy Joe
blusk
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Leah, ignore that Phil. Candy corn stock is low and I can always use cash. As Ding! boy gave you the link about SWA stock, you will notice that SWA doesn't sell our stock directly to the public. (Once you become an Employee, you can have stock purchases payroll deducted.) There are a lot of online stock brokers, you see them advertised all the time on CNN and other programs. By law, we really can' t offer you financial advice, including specific suggestions on brokers. My suggestion is to ask friends or family who invest in the stock market about a good broker. Brian
Will2
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Mer. So glad to work for a Company that gets to hear such good stories. Here's one for you: A friend was travelling to Orlando, with his elderly mother. The trip down was great, and the return was going well, until a de-icing truck hit the wing of his aircraft, in Cleveland. The crew did a great job of keeping everyone informed, another flight was found for the leg to Chicago, and he thought, "well, not perfect, but not so bad". Less than a week later, SWA send him two large travel vouchers, with a note of apology for their 'inconvenience'. Getting a sincere apology and gift for a situation you thought was 'no big deal'?? Priceless!! He's now a Raving SWA Fan (and I'm pretty proud of us, too.) Will Browne MDW F/A
Leah4
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Ha, ha Phil! 🙂 That's a good one. Thanks, Joe & Brian. That helps.
FriendofBlogBoy
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Leah, Send me a certified check with plenty of numbers on the left side of the decimal point, and I'll get you some authentic Southwist Airlenes stock along with your very own Rolox watch, a beautiful necklace from Tiffeny's and a brand new shiny red Lexas. Kim 🙂
Leah4
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Okay, Kim! In place of the Lexus, though (& there's certainly nothing wrong with that type of car!), can I have a red, two door Honda Civic, please? Can I also have another plane ticket back to Israel, this time on El Al, which is the Israeli airline? Thanks! 🙂 Please let me know when you need the check!
FriendofBlogBoy
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Hmmm, I think my ruse is working...poor Leah hasn't noticed that each of those 'wonderful' items I am offering are not spelled the way she thinks they are and may not be exactly what she thinks she's going to get.... ha ha ha ha Which shell do you think the pea is under now? 🙂
blusk
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Kim, I guess you're just being Cevec-minded, although I'm surprised Leah wasn't interested in a gift from "Tiffeny's." Perhaps it is because you can have Breakfast at Tiffany's, but you have to have catfish and hush puppies at Tiffeny's. Blog Boy
Leah4
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Ha, ha, Kim & Brian! 🙂 Actually, I did notice they were spelled wrong. You know, a necklace from "Tiffeny's" would be nice, too. 🙂
blusk
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A dyemond necklace from Tiffeny's???
Karen_Capozzi
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hi there...after reviewing all your wonderful nationwide specials...it occurred to me there is never any specials to the NorthEAST...like Boston...and Manchester,NH.. this is a huge market...just curious if you might consider future deals and discounts to this local? signed...a Bean-Towner from way back...