Crew managers have not changed for decades my dear. They are still in the same zap-zap land.
The difference between 1980s and 2000
is not 20+ years. Its the senior crew.
The SCS ( IFS now ) the CS.
Once the doors closed, we were on our own and we decided on many things based on common sense and guided by the belief about what service meant to customers. Yes, we also threw the rule book out of the window.
-We distributed headsets even when a sector did not require it.
-We served hot towels even though it was not required, after all, we had enough to go round.
-We served hot drinks before arrival even when it was not required, by taking individual drink orders.
-We made ad hoc baby post weaning meals using first class food items and ensured it was neither too hot, or cold and with the approval of the parents.
Lots of things we did on board was guided by the belief that pax would enjoy them. This, to us was the extra mile. The extra mile that managers never knew about but pax appreciated.
The managers never even knew how and what things pax wanted ( while on board )
Since 2000, many things changed:
-Towels supplied for 2 serves only
-Headsets distribution controlled
-Cannot anyhow give baby food
-Follow service guideliness
-Any deviation, juniors will report.
The senior staff have no room to innovate and create... all for fear of being reported. Then again the managers want to standardise everything in the belief that it will not confuse the younger crew and also for performance KPI.
This killed and buried the spirit & soul of what essentially is the 'Great way to fly'
I am glad I had contributed to the glory of SQ's past. It is not possible for the younger generation to replicate it because the managers have created a barrier that will last longer than the great wall of china.
Fly, save, enjoy the night stops and the few friends that you have nurtured. But leave before the rot gets into your psyche. Stay away from managers... they have motives that you will never wish even upon your worst enemies. Shut up in their presence as they will hijack ideas as their own and worse... create a new circular to prohibit whatever you thought was a good practice.