Skip to main content

3 strokes of genius, 30 years of unbroken profitability


Sitting in a club with Herb Kelleher, Rollin King picked up a napkin and on it made three strokes to form a triangle. As he wrote San Antonio, Houston, and Dallas on each of the three points of the triangle, Rollin explained an idea -- a NEW idea that became Southwest Airlines.

Amazingly, Rollin's simple picture illustrates the operating principles of the company that he and Herb decided to start that day: fly short routes between busy cities, avoid hubs, and where possible fly into smaller, secondary airfields. "One napkin, one good idea, one profitable airline." says Dan Roam in The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures.

If you place Rollin's triangle side by side with the route maps of the big airlines of the day, that's when you clearly see why his business idea was NEW and destined to succeed.

Comments

  1. Congratulations Pradeep for the 50th Blog. It is nice , simple and Thought provoking.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Interesting blog, but as you are probably aware Southwest left this simple model in 2009 as it was too limiting and they now are flying agressively into crowded hub airports such as Denver, LaGuardia, Dulles, and now Boston as they do not want to lose market to upstarts to them such as JetBlue started by Needleman. Thanks for the thought.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks Sam. The objective was to illustrate how a simple picture can powerfully communicate a business concept. But you have a point ... maybe I should have mentioned this clearly in the article. Thanks, again.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Congratulations Pradeep for this milestone.

    I am a regular reader of your blog. Thanks for sharing these nuggets of wisdom. Your ability to touch upon a wide variety of contemporary topics and giving new insights is remarkable. Pictures added in your blog makes it memorable and more interesting to read.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks for your comments and wishes. Hope I find NEW ways to improving the work!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Explorer mentality Vs conqueror mentality

A fixation on competitors and on beating them is evidence of what Amazon's Jeff Bezos calls a conqueror mentality. In contrast, people waking up in the morning thinking how to innovate for the customer -- and having intense fun innovating -- is evidence of an explorer mentality.

The explorer mentality resulted in Amazon allowing negative reviews of its products. Reacting to this, a book publisher objected, saying "You make money when you sell things." But Bezos thought, "We don't make money when we sell things; we make money when we help customers make purchase decisions." So explorer mentality also demands a willingness to be misunderstood for long periods of time.

During his 16 years as CEO, Bezos' Amazon has delivered shareholder returns of 12,266% (industry-adjusted), and the company's value has grown by $111 billion. More in HBR Jan-Feb 2013.

"If you worry about your reputation you don't deserve to have one."

Nassim Nicholas Taleb 1/2:
If you worry about your reputation you don't deserve to have one. Let me add just a bit to Taleb's great quote ...

True reputation is earned based on your positive CONTRIBUTIONS to entities other than yourself and your family: employers, customers, industry, society, Church, country, world, whatever.

Ask yourself: What have I discovered, invented, shared, set up, or built that will be of significant value to another entity for some time?

Contributions are not about our title (director, VP, etc). It's nice to have a big title (I would like to have one, too). At best, titles make us and our family happy. But chasing after titles could be a sign of narcissism. Titles are rarely a trustworthy certificate of contribution. This is true today when titles are increasingly achieved through bootlicking, back-stabbing, even hijacking another's job.

Contributions have longer life. They cannot be erased overnight. Five hundred years after German professor…

Before you watch another news report, watch this whistleblower

If the leftist media was biased back in 2001, it is an outright mafia today Bernard Goldberg, a 28-year-veteran at leftist media outlet CBS, has exposed the "pettiness, hypocrisy, and bias inside CBS ... Just turn on your TV set and it’s there … but it’s there too often in too many stories."

Shockingly, you see not only political bias, but social bias as well.

In both political and social topics, the leftist media puts out content that dupes both loyalists and new-comers. Why are they so biased: self-serving purposes such as ratings and manipulation for votes.

Goldberg exposes the leftist media.
Manipulation Leftist media constantly attempts to manipulate people's mind with the following tricks.

1. They lie. Or misinform.

2. They hide certain things, as though these things did not exist or did not matter.

3. They won’t let the other voices be heard. More recently, author Sharyl Attkisson was not allowed to freely air segments that exposed Obama scandals such as Operation…