WHAT IT'S LIKE WORKING FOR AN AIRLINE CALL CENTER

  1. β€’
    Flexible
    Because everyone in a department does essentially the same job, the schedule is very flexible, you can trade shifts with anyone, there are multiple ways to get vacation time off.
  2. β€’
    Demoralizing
    You really feel like a rear end in a chair sometimes. You don't have your own desk, just sit down and plug in anywhere. Everything you do, bathroom breaks, lunches, calls, everything is tied to the clock, recorded, analyzed, judged. It's very disheartening.
  3. β€’
    Wild
    The weather can destroy you at a moment's notice. Flying stresses people out and makes them ask impossible things. I once had a woman demand I go out to the runway and fix the plane myself and no amount of logical argument (I'm not in your city, I'm not even at an airport, I'm definitely not a mechanic!)could dissuade her from screaming "just go fix the |}#%%{| plane!!!!"
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    Feast or Famine
    It's either insanely busy or you are sitting for an hour between calls. Both can be excruciating.
  5. β€’
    Beneficial
    Good benefits, flight benefits are πŸ‘ŒπŸΌπŸ’― I was pleasantly surprised by their short and long term disability programs and how easy they were to navigate when I needed something.
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    Specific Holidays
    Shift bid days are a big deal, so is profit sharing day and also April 1st-the day each year your benefits and raise are renewed!! Hooray!!!
  7. β€’
    Isolating
    There isn't a lot of time to chat with your co-workers. Like other call centers, it's you, at a desk, with headphones.
  8. β€’
    Heartbreaking
    People aren't always flying for happy reasons. Some stories I heard were just crushing. I had a woman in tears when the European airports were closed after the volcano erupted in Iceland in 2010. She had stayed in the states to get her last chemo treatment then was flying to Paris to meet her daughters for their double wedding. I had nothing for her. I was a supervisor so I usually could make something work if I had to, but this is one situation I remember I couldn't fix.
  9. β€’
    Monumental
    I worked at American through 9/11. I worked at the crisis call center afterwards and it was devastating but also inspiring. So many of the things that usually made the job frustrating were missing. Everyone that called was trying to help in some way, they were kind, understanding, truly their best selves and I think so were we. It's an interesting phenomenon about tragedy that it always seems to bring out so much good. I've often thought Pandora's box is one of the very sharpest metaphors.
  10. β€’
    Annoying
    Most people were wonderful, some were just wild and made good stories and you kind of felt badly for them because they had just fallen off the deep end a little but one particular set of customers was just a pain in the butt. People who had flown enough miles to get to Gold frequent flyer status always seemed to be the worst. I think every business has its niche of customers that always seem to be difficult. The people that know enough to give you a hard time but not enough to understand.