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Sunday, July 15, 2012

Cabin Crew Executive ( Check/Training)

Admittedly, I was an executive without any paper qualification nor a university degree. Many of my younger colleagues possessed good degrees from NUS  and other overseas universities.
I was one of the 20 cabin crew executives in SIA who rose from the ranks. In other words, I started off as a flight steward with the airline. My younger colleagues did not have to go through the mill. The were put on the accelerated promotion program just like in the army. These uni graduates were trained by us in cabin work. After 2 years of flying they were at par with us, in terms of rank. Again after another 2 to 3 years as a CCE C/T they were promoted to Assistant Manager (AM). As AM, we had to report to them.
That's the difference between us and the graduate CCE C/T. We bear no grudge towards them. In fact, they were grateful for all the coaching we gave them when they first entered into the airline service business.
In 2003 when SARS hit the airline business badly we left in a group of 18. Our graduate colleagues were not offered the golden handshake as they did not clock more than 15 years of continuous service with SIA. Nevertheless, all of them (6) left a year or 2 after us. Probably they felt lost without us. Besides, the position of the CCE C/T was made redundant to save cost.
As a CCE our job scope covered crew discipline, MCs, work performance, promotions etc. We were also involved in the training of cabin crew or flight attendants as some airlines would call them. Training of new recruits as well as promotion classes and refresher courses for the senior crew were also part of our job.
Each CCE were in charged of around 200 crew. The CCE were also known as wardleaders. The AM C/Ts were mega wardleaders or sometimes nicknamed " Mega Gods" because of their power status. Each mega god was in charge of about 6 CCEs or 6 wards. We had to report to them and in return they to the manager.
The CCE C/Ts were also put on flights to appraise or check on the crew's work performances most notably the most senior crew which was the IFS or Inflight Supervisor.
The captain was in charge of the cockpit crew. They have their own SVPFO and we our own (SVPCC). If there is a dispute over discipline or work the matter would be referred to our own SVP. The captain of the flight had an overall say in the matter of safety.
If I may say, the standard of our inflight service has always been high because of the CCEs. The CCEs were trained by the first few batches of stewards who attended the courses in London back in the late 1950s. These old stewards were trained by BOAC the predecessor of BA. They were the ones who brought to the MSA and SIA the truly great service culture. They had retired sometime ago and we CCEs took over the baton from them.
Now, with the CCEs gone, the Inflight Supervisor are the ones who run the show from crew discipline to training of new crew. The IFS are appointed the temporary position of the IAs or Inflight Auditors. Two years after being appointed as an IA they will return to their original position as IFS.
One of main functions of IAs is to appraise the IFSs just like what the CCEs used to do. Can you imagine how effective could the appraisal be knowing that one day that same IFS would also be an IA and appraising you?
The above idea was copied from MAS (Malaysia Airline System) to save cost. I don't think any idea from a money losing  company could help much.
This could be a reason for the drop in the standard of service on SIA's flights. The crew are being trained by people who lack training expertise for the last 9 years These IAs are made to be responsible as wardleaders. Suddenly an IFS one day and a wardleader in charge of 200 crew the next day. It will get worse as the days go by. There is saying and it goes like this: You pay peanuts and you will get monkeys.

PS: CCE (C/T) = Cabin Crew Executive (Check/Training).


Jacky said...

Actually qualification is just a stepping stone to success. Being street-smart is key to great success.

Anonymous said...

Uncle BT.... it is truly SIA's loss..... I foresee SIA share price will reach $5........ pls sell while u still can at >$10 fellow SIA shareholders!!!!!

Boh Tong said...

$5??? dun scare me no i dun wanna sell cos i bght them at 15 a piece :(

Stories From The Air said...

Yes, too much headwinds for SIA. I believe it is very difficult for the share price to recover. It will touch new lows.

SIA needs a revolutionary change in thinking.

Anonymous said...

it will drop below $10, price forecast will be about $8.50+