How one person’s etiquette at airport security can make a difference

We’ve been asking people for business travel etiquette pet peeves and a lot complaints center around Airport Security (TSA in the USA and CATSA In Canada). But sometimes we are pleasantly surprised. All it takes is one person to make a difference.

business etiquette tips for customer service and travel peeves

Cattle call

As a frequent business traveler I spent a fair amount of time at airports. Like most of us, I dread the long lines, being treated like cattle at security and having to strip off anything that might cause the alarms to go off.

Same old same old – surprise!

I was returning home to Edmonton from a long but successful week of training in Grande Prairie. I was hungry, tired and getting ready for the same-old – same-old at airport security.  This time to my surprise I  was greeted with a smile by one woman with security. So unexpected and so welcome!  All of a sudden I didn’t feel so tired anymore.

It didn’t stop there

The guy behind me had laid his baseball cap on top of his tray of belongings. As it went through the X-ray machine it fell off the conveyor. He told the friendly security woman “This always happens.”  She said. “May I make a suggestion?

Hat trick

If you place your coins and wallet inside the cap, the weight of the coins will keep it upright and prevent it from falling. As a bonus you can scoop up your coins effortlessly rather than have to pick them up one by one from the bin.”

A smile and a solution

A simple solution to a common problem, offered again with a smile. Her caring engagement lightened  the mood of everyone in the lineup.

Take your job seriously and yourself lightly

Airport security is a serious matter. Airport staff have a tough time enforcing rules that seem to compromise our dignity. We know they’re just doing their job however, if everyone took a page from the way this Grande Prairie woman treated customers we would all have much better experiences and travel feeling like human beings instead of human cargo.

Please share your travel etiquette gripes and also your tips and bouquets for travel customer service with us.

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Posted by Joanne Blake – The corporate image consultant and frequent flyer

About the author 

Joanne Blake

Canadian speaker, corporate image consultant & business etiquette expert. If you're interested in booking a presentation, keynote or coaching, contact me. Based in Calgary / Edmonton, Alberta in western Canada.

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