Tutorial Week 6: Case Study - Leaders and Followers
Flying High at Pancontinental Airways
Excellent customer service is all important at Pancontinental Airways (PA). A sense of fun pervades the Australian based company with the hope that this will spread throughout the organisation and impact the all important relationship with PAs customers. For PA central to the organisation/customer relationship is the recruitment, training and development and retention of staff based on a strong collegiate culture between the organisational leaders and followers.
The organisation also has a very visible `fun presence` clearly seen in for example the colourful external paintjobs on the company`s aircraft and the behaviour of staff throughout…show more content… Yet it is not that the company shirks the usual structures of labour relations – the vast majority of staff belong to an industrial union and the company actively promotes membership and representation of staff at all levels. The unions are active members of the decision making forums within the company and this has allowed staff issues to be addressed at the highest organisational levels and early in any company negotiations. Unions are encouraged to bring their concerns openly to the table in the annual contract negotiation process and in the last decade this has helped PA avoid any major personnel dispute. All contract negotiation meetings are chaired by Callahan himself enhancing his role as a holistic leader, with genuine closeness to his staff and with his finger very definitely on the pulse of the organisation.
Callahan openly admits that he is a crafted outcome of his early experiences in the industry where he took seasonal work when at University. `I`ve done practically every job in the company` he says `from the bottom up – I know what long hours are and I have empathy for everyone in the organisation and especially those who perform the less glamorous, inward facing roles. These members of our company family are the real life blood of our success`. Callahan is still often seen in the hangar workshops and catering department for example, holding spanners for engineers and packing cup-cakes onto in-flight