This team is more impressive than a Formula 1 pit crew (and they smile continuously) Would I lie to you?


You’re on a flight.

You’re absentmindedly watching the safety briefing.

And you’re also wondering how the cabin crew would cope if a massive hole were torn in the fuselage.

Dammit, that’s just me isn’t it.

Don’t get me wrong, I love a flight – and yes I also have carbon footprint guilt – but there’s one part of the whole process that fascinates me.

The airline cabin crew.

Specifically, watching them serve food and drink to over 200 (mostly awkward bastard) passengers. They’re more impressive than a Formula 1 pit crew (in my humble opinion) who are arguably a highly coordinated group of specialist individuals.

Cabin crew have to navigate an ever changing scenario as an interdependent team – plus it involves the general public.

Which we all know means gritting their teeth and smiling in the face of someone complaining about their tea being too hot.

And not only are they serving you food and drinks, they might just be keeping you alive one day – remember the gaping hole in the fuselage? Oh, you were trying to forget, sorry.

The Cabin Crew Test

I would argue that if a cabin crew are not high performing, then us holiday makers are all screwed (so to speak). So, how would your team compare to a mighty cabin crew?

I believe they have the following attributes in abundance. Score your own team out of 5 for each bullet:

  • We’re clear on our purpose and the shared endeavour
  • We listen well – to customers, the team, the changing environment
  • We agree on the best way to work together
  • We reflect on how we’re doing as a team
  • No one is afraid to speak up and give feedback
  • Our processes are effective
  • Our roles and responsibilities are clear

I’m going to bet you a pot of Yum-Me Penne Arrabbiata (right from the EasyJet inflight menu, I know, right), that you scored low on at least 2 of these bullets.

I am yet to sit with a team that isn’t a little inconsistent in one or more of these areas (apart from maybe my time at Mayden – my new Podcast episode about this coming up soon!)

What to do?

  • Invite your team to score themselves
  • Chat about the scores
  • What came out top, low or was inconsistent?
  • Which areas would give you the biggest impact if you were to work on them?
  • Agree to try a few experiments to see what happens
  • Work on them
  • Review how it’s going

Doing this will feel good because you’ll get more stuff done.

Plus it’s more likely to be the right stuff that will bring results.

And if you want your team to truly take off (see what i did there?) just hit reply and we can chat.