Dr. Chandler - MGMT 449
Summer 2012, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 8:00 a.m.
• What recommendations would we make to
Southwest CEO Gary Kelley after the
acquisition of AirTran for the Company to
remain successful heading into 2011?
• Choose a company strategy that best executes
the goals and objectives of Southwest Airlines
after comparing the strategies of AirTran and
• Rationale: It is crucial to keep only one
strategy to avoid decision making dilemma.
• Objective: Strategy decision making will take
Building an Organization Capable of Good Strategy Execution
• Step 1: Put together a talented management team.
• Step 2: Allocate sufficient resources.
• Step 3: Institute policies and procedures.
• Step 4: Strategy needs to relate to Southwest culture.`
• Step 5: Strategy needs to support Southwest
• Step 6: Exercise strong leadership.
• Step 7: Employee decision-making authority.
• Step 8: Install information and operating systems.
• Step 9: Tie rewards and incentives to the strategy.
• Implement the best practice operational
activities among AirTran and Southwest that
will help Southwest maintain low-cost
leadership and high employee and customer
• Rationale: Effective operational strategies will
improve Southwest Airlines’ core competency
• Objective: Execute within 3 years after
Managing Internal Operations
• Step 1: Measure effectiveness
• Step 2: Select the most effective (Voting Process)
• Step 3: Create and improve policies & procedures
• Step 4: Implement best practice operational
• Step 5: Re-evaluate effectiveness
• Integrate AirTran Company into the Southwest
• Rationale: Southwest is a more established
airline and is the low-cost leader in the
• Objective: Focus on teaching AirTran
employees about the culture within 3–5years
Corporate Culture and Leadership
• Step 1: Compare and contrast the core
competency for both companies
• Step 2: Identify actions and behaviors for the
• Step 3: Identify problems and find solutions
about Company policies, operations, or
• Step 4: Identify and execute visible and
Figure 12.2 Steps to Take in Changing a
Problem Culture (p. 406)
Compare and contrast the core competency of both companies
Compare and contrast effective strategies and key success factors
for both companies
Substantive: Attend Southwest’s University for People
Symbolic: Hold ceremonial events (annual awards banquets)
Employee feedback through blog (Nuts about Southwest) and
Keep employee morale high
Provide excellent customer service
Be the industry leader of low-fares
Culture of Southwest
• Work Hard
• Desire to be the
• Be courageous
• Display urgency
• Have FUN
• Don’t take yourself
• Celebrate successes
• Enjoy your work
• Be a passionate
A Servant’s Heart
• Follow The Golden Rule
• Adhere to the Principles
• Treat others with
• Put others first
• Be egalitarian
• Demonstrate proactive
• Customer Service
• Embrace the SWA
Culture of AirTran
Our Guiding Principles
• A total commitment to safety
• Compliance with regulatory
• Technical excellence and
• Honesty, trust and integrity
• Respectful responsibility for
• Acting with purpose and urgency
• Hard work
• The success of the acquisition will
be based on how they implement our
– Building an organization capable of
– Managing internal operations.
– Integrate into one corporate culture
and leadership style.