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Communication Issues in Singapore Airlines

Question:

Discuss about the Management Issues In The Singapore Airline.

Singapore Airlines was established in January 1947. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of the government. It also offers services like air transportation, in-flight services, and ground services.  In 1947 the company started with twin-engine Airspeed consul under the airways of Malaysia.  In 1972 the company established two entities like Malaysian airline system and Singapore airlines. Singapore Airlines has also suffered from many changes in its management and services.  So, the issues that are identified in the Singapore airlines are communication and motivation.  These issues should be resolved as it affects the performance of the company (Zentner, 2016).

One of the management issues in the Singapore airline is related to communication. Communication plays a great role in conducting the overall activities of the organization in a smooth way.  If there is no proper communication in the organization then it can be difficult to survive in the competitive environment. Communication is important for the organization as it helps in managing the performance of the company (Karatepe and Vatankhah, 2014).  It is analyzed that Singapore Airline faces the issue of communication.  There is no proper communication process in the organization.  Due to this, there are many incidents of flight clashes that took place (Bok, 2015). Miscommunication can create a great problem for the organization. 

Communication channel is related with the flow of information within the organization. It is seen that in Singapore airline there is no proper channel of communication. The flow of information does not take place in a proper manner. The information that is given by the managers is not conveyed to every employee of the organization. For instance: It is seen that the pilots who are in the night shift face problem to communicate with the employees as managers are not available on their positions. If employee wants to give their feedback then it can create difficulty for them to raise their voice as there is no proper hierarchy in the organization. This give impact on the satisfaction level of the employees and also it is seen that it is difficult to retain the employees.

For example: there is huge number of people who left the company just because of the communication barrier they face at the time of conducting the activities of the organization. So, as the employees left the impact is also seen on the performance. There are fewer employees to assist the customers to solve the query and to book tickets.

Motivation Issues in Singapore Airlines

The activities that are conducted by the employees of the organization are not clear and sometimes duplication of work takes place. This happens just because of the ineffective communication process of the organization.  For instance if the employee is given a task to   call the customers and tell them about the offers. So, if proper meeting is not conducted then employee can call the same customer twice . The workload of the employees increases due to the  in proper communication (Kimes and Wirtz, 2015). The employees conduct the same activities twice that consumes both time and productivity of the employees. Then it is seen that impact is seen on the overall sales and profits of the organization.

The company has also appointed the people of different backgrounds so it creates a great issue for the employees to communicate with each other.  The communication process is slowed down in the organization. The satisfaction level of the employees is reduced because of ineffective communication in the organization (Pang, 2016). For instance : There are two departments in the organziation and from the booking department one person ask for the information of a particlar customer and the employee of other department do not understand then it can lead to confusion and the employees will not be able to achieve goals and objectives. Also confusion takes place just because of the different language of the people. So, the company should set one language to be used in the organziation so that confusion can be reduced and efficiency can be achieved in effective manner.

Also, there was one incident that took place on October 31, 2000. The airplane was scheduled to take off from Singapore to Los Angeles via Taipei. Flight 006 was moving slowly to its takeoff point and the climate condition was also not good. The visibility was not clear and crewmembers landed the plane on Boeing runway which was closed for repairing. So, this accident took place due to the miscommunication. The report was few months ago published and was not given to the pilot. As the result, the takeoff process was on the wrong runway.

When the pilot tries to take off the flight the aircraft collided with heavy equipment and broke apart.  Many passengers who are seated in the middle of the plane were killed when the fuel in the wings exploded.  Total 83 passengers died out of 179 on board including four crewmembers (Lim, 2017). This accident has given negative impact on the image of the company. The customers think twice before booking their seats in the Singapore airlines (Zhang et al., 2016). It is seen that if proper communication is not there in the organization then it can create difficulty to manage the activities of the organization.  This issue is a major issue in Singapore airline.

Impact on Customers and Company

So, by analyzing all these incidents that took place in the organization it is seen that the company should focus on managing communication channel so that the activities of the organization can be conducted smoothly. If communication process is improved in Singapore airline then it can be easy for the company to compete in the competitive environment (Heracleous and Wirtz, 2014). Without effective communication, it can be difficult for the company to enhance the overall profitability and productivity of the organization.

Next issue that is seen in the organization is related to motivation. Motivation refers to the encouragement by various means that enhances the overall performance of the employee in an organization. Motivation is an essential part of every organization as it helps to achieve success in the market. It is seen that motivated workers are more productive than the demotivated one.  Motivation at work is essential offering services so that effective and integrated approach can be made for enhancing the satisfaction level of the customers.

In Singapore airline, it is evaluated that the workers are not dedicated towards the work assigned to them.  So, due to this negative impact is given to the customers.  The customers are not happy and satisfied with the services offered by the company. There are many reviews in which customers are complaining about the delay in the information and inadequate services. This is just because of lack of motivation of the employees (Lohmann and Spasojevic, 2018).The employees who are conducting their routine activities are not motivated and efficient towards their work.  There are many complains of the customers related to cleanliness and delay in the flights.  It is seen that it is important for the company to maintain good relationships with the customer. But due to the inefficiency of the employees, the satisfaction level of the employees is not enhanced (De Neufville, 2016).

The complaint of the customers is also related to the taste of food offered to the customers at the time of their journey.  Lack of motivation in the employees of Singapore airline has affected the quality of the services and also the overall profitability of the organization. Due to lack of motivation in employees, the number of absentees is also enhanced. When a number of absentees enhance then the direct impact is seen on the activities of the organization (Wirtz and Heracleous, 2016). It is important for the organization to maintain proper services and working pattern so that employees can conduct the activities with efficiency.

Suggestions to Address the Issues

Motivation level of the employees is important to be enhanced so that the activities can be conducted in a right direction.  Motivated employees help the company to enhance the image and also the level of productivity.  Efficiency and dedication of the employees are also enhanced if motivation techniques are considered by the company.  In Singapore airline, the employees are not dedicated towards the work which creates a major issue for the company to attract more and more customers. The motivation of the employee depends upon four components work environment, pay and benefit and organizational vision.  These components are also the major factor that helps in satisfying the customers of the airline industry.

Singapore Airlines failed to develop motivational programs for its workers who resort them to undergo strikes and lockout. Employees in the organization are not willing to perform with dedication because many times their basic needs are not satisfied that stops them to develop their high level wants like self-esteem and actualization.


Cabin crews are considered as the backbone of the airline industry.  It is seen that in Singapore airline the performance declines just because of long flying hours and it directly impacts the relationship of the customers.  It is the inability of the company to consider the issues and motivate them to enhance their productivity.

Singapore airline offices do not have proper feedback mechanism and sessions related to hearing the problems of the employees. Hence the department of human resource is not able to trace and evaluate the factors of motivation which will help the employees to give their best.  So, it is seen that there is a gap between top management and it is reflected in the attitude of the employees at the time of dealing with the customers.  The demand of the employees like an increase in wages, revision of pay packages also led to unproductive work (Holloway, 2017). The pilots of the company refused to conduct the activities because the wages given to cabin crew members are low. Singapore airline cut the salary of the employees just because of the crisis that took place. So, this factor demotivates the employees and their productivity level reduce.

By anlayzing the issue of motivation in the Singapore Airline it is anlayzed that “Maslow hierarchy of needs theory” should be taken into consideration so that motivation can be enhnaced. There are five steps in this theory Biological and physiological needs, safety needs, Love and belongingness needs, esteem needs and self-actualization needs. It is important for the company to offer basic needs like water, food and holidays so that employees can be energized and conduct the activities with efficiency. Wages should also be according to the experience and overall performance of the employees.  Singapore airline should also offer job security to its employee’s so that they can give their best towards the activities. It is also important that there should be love and affection between the employees’ so that they can conduct the activities with proper teamwork. Esteem needs should also be considered as it helps to create respect for others. The employees should be promoted according to the performance.  Singapore airlines should make realize the potential and capability of the individual possessed so that work can be conduct with efficiency.

It is important for the Singapore airline to enhance their wages according to the qualification and position of the employee so that the motivation level can be enhanced effectively.   Issue related to Motivation has given impact on the productivity and on the image of the company.  So if these issues are addressed then the service level of Singapore airline can be at par and also the satisfaction level can be enhanced effectively.  Motivation brings happiness and if employees of the organization are motivated then it can give impact on the overall productivity and profitability level of the company

Conclusion

By evaluating the report, it is seen that the management issues related to Singapore airline are communication and motivation.  Both the issues should be resolved in a proper manner so that the activities can be conducted smoothly. Communication issue should be resolved by taking into consideration proper communication channel so that duplication and conflict can be minimized in the organization.  In the next phase of the report, the issue related to motivation is discussed in which Singapore airlines should focus on enhancing the level of motivation by offering wages according to their qualification. If the employee is motivated then it can be easy for the company to enhance overall profitability and productivity in a proper manner.

References

Asif, M., 2015. A critical review of service excellence models: towards developing an integrated framework. Quality & Quantity, 49(2), pp.763-783.

Bok, R., 2015. Airports on the move? The policy mobilities of Singapore Changi Airport at home and abroad. Urban Studies, 52(14), pp.2724-2740.

De Neufville, R., 2016. Airport systems planning and design. Air Transport Management: An International Perspective, p.61.

Heracleous, L. and Wirtz, J., 2014. Singapore Airlines: Achieving sustainable advantage through mastering paradox. The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 50(2), pp.150-170.

Holloway, S., 2017. Airlines: Managing to make money. Routledge.

Karatepe, O.M. and Vatankhah, S., 2014. The effects of high-performance work practices on perceived organizational support and turnover intentions: Evidence from the airline industry. Journal of Human Resources in Hospitality & Tourism, 13(2), pp.103-119.

Karatepe, O.M. and Vatankhah, S., 2015. High-performance work practices, career satisfaction, and service recovery performance: a study of flight attendants. Tourism Review, 70(1), pp.56-71.

Kimes, S.E. and Wirtz, J., 2015. Revenue management: Advanced strategies and tools to enhance firm profitability. Foundations and Trends® in Marketing, 8(1), pp.1-68.

Lim, K.Y., 2017. An exploratory mixed methods analysis of the media framing of crisis stakeholder salience: The case of Singapore Airlines SQ006 (Doctoral dissertation, Institute of Lifelong Learning).

Lohmann, G. and Spasojevic, B., 2018. Airline business strategy. The Routledge Companion to Air Transport Management, p.139.

Pang, A., 2016. Crisis Communication Research in Singapore. The Handbook of International Crisis Communication Research, pp.283-291.

Pangarkar, N., 2016. A framework for effective crisis response. Journal of Organizational Change Management, 29(4), pp.464-483.

Stewart, D.W. and Shamdasani, P.N., 2014. Focus groups: Theory and practice (Vol. 20). Sage publications.

Vatankhah, S., Javid, E. and Raoofi, A., 2017. Perceived organizational support as the mediator of the relationships between high-performance work practices and counter-productive work behavior: Evidence from airline industry. Journal of Air Transport Management, 59, pp.107-115.

Wirtz, J. and Heracleous, L., 2016. Singapore Airlines: Managing Human Resources for Costeffective Service Excellence. In SERVICES MARKETING: People Technology Strategy (pp. 695-703).

Zentner, A., 2016. Service as a Strategy: A Review of Singapore Airlines. Browser Download This Paper.

Zhang, B., Kotkov, D., Veijalainen, J. and Semenov, A., 2016, September. Online stakeholder interaction of some airlines in the light of situational crisis communication theory. In Conference on e-Business, e-Services and e-Society (pp. 183-192). Springer, Cham

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