Friday, March 24, 2006

Introducing the Phooey Awards

I make a profession of teaching people how to communicate honestly with each other, in ways that benefit everyone. In keeping with this tradition, I’d like to announce the launch of the Phooey Awards – where I periodically “honor” organizations that seem to do exactly the opposite of what they say. This month, our inaugural award-winner is (drum roll) … US Airways.

US Airways recently merged with America West Airlines, and now bills itself on its web site as “the world’s largest low-fare airline.” As the primary air carrier serving my small hamlet in upstate New York, I recently checked their roundtrip fare from here to Philadelphia – a scant 191 air miles away – and was quoted a fare of $725.00. (Or, put another way, roughly the same price as a round trip from New York to London plus a three-night hotel stay on the same dates.) So, the world’s largest low-fare airline? I say Phooey.

To be fair, I am really glad to see US Airways emerge from bankruptcy, join with a new partner, and start hiring back a lot of their furloughed employees. They are a good airline with a long history, particularly here in the Northeast, and I have always been happy with their service. But to paraphrase Sen. Lloyd Bentsen, you’re no Southwest Airlines.

Stay tuned for the next installment of the prestigious Phooey awards – and until then, if you are a business that doesn't communicate honestly with your customers, Phooey to you!

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On the personal front, even though my new book Great Customer Connections won't be officially released for more than two months, it is already climbing the charts at Its sales rank is already close to 50,000, the day after doing my first radio interview about it. (Being in the top 150,000 out of their 4+ million titles roughly equates to selling well at major bookstores.) Want to join the party and pre-order a copy? Click here.

Amazon sales ranks seem to involve a complex, proprietary formula that only the CIA could love - for one person's view, check this article. My best sales rank to date was 2019 for my previous book The Soul of an Organization, at which time it was also one of the top 10 books on corporate culture in the US. Yes, it's just a number, but checking your sales rank on Amazon remains a pleasant addiction for most authors.

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