As a coach, I cringe every time I read a news article involving the Boeing 737 Max airplane crashes. The latest being that no one has ordered a Max since the Ethiopian Airlines crash. That’s not surprising to anyone.
How could one company veer so far off course from the safety and integrity values that they boldly claim on their website?
Boeing ignored not one, but TWO of their stated values:
“We value human life…above all else.” (safety)
“We take personal responsibility for our own actions.” (integrity)
Boeing leadership did not take my advice on managing a crisis. They were undeniably winging it with their amateurish response which was grounded in protectionism and self-preservation.
Boeing broke their brand promise. The promise of an experience rooted in those values.
How can their customers and passengers ever trust them again?
Your values whether personal or corporate are quality control for your high stakes decisions.
Had anyone at Boeing funneled their decisions after the second all-passenger fatal crash thorough their “Enduring Values,” they would have illuminated the incongruency in their actions.
Individuals and organization’s don’t dump their values overnight; they slowly erode in the daily opportunities we take, the compromises we make, and the aspirations we break.
We can all take a lesson from scouting and many service organizations. The Boy Scouts begin their meetings with a pledge that they call the Scout Oath and Law. It isn’t about professing blind loyalty to an institution but being unyielding in the beliefs that govern our everyday choices and behavior.
What are your values? How do you communicate those values regularly with those around you? Are you living your values in all your interactions with clients, prospects, vendors and the people you meet?
As for Boeing’s leadership, the path to salvaging their business, restoring their brand, and regaining trust will prove to be a turbulent flight.