Ethiopian Airlines Soon to be the Most Customer-Centric Airline in the World

I was in Ethiopia for 6 days in November doing service strategy seminars for the Ethiopian Airlines leadership team, key employees and the executive team. They want all their employees to be Customer Oriented, Not Task Oriented.

About 2,500 employees attended my seminars in their 500-seat auditorium. We then trained 50 selected leaders to facilitate 3 of our customer service programs. Empowerment, Speed and Loyal for Life (Service Recovery). All 3 programs are branded with a message on the back cover of the participant book by Mesfin Tasew. CEO. Murtaza Versi, our top Distributor in Tanzania conducted a 4-day Certification for 50 key leaders to train thousands of employees with the 3 programs. Ethiopian Airlines wants all employees to make fast empowered decisions in favor of the customer, dramatically improve their speed on everything and master service recovery when things go wrong.

Service Quality Institute has been working with Ethiopian Airlines for over 10 years. They are the most respected company in Ethiopia. the best-managed and most profitable airline in Africa. They have 17,000 employees and another 10,000 employees in the airports in Ethiopia.

I suggest you look for an opportunity to fly with Ethiopian Airlines. Let me know if they exceed your expectations. They have many flights into the US and cover Africa, the Middle East, Europe, Russia and Asia. This is the first airline that is focused on improving its customer service and training its service recovery. 

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Costco A Relentless Customer Service Role Model

Costco just released its 2022 annual report for the fiscal year ending August 28, 2022. Costco was featured in my book, Relentless as a handful of companies that never lost their focus on delivering an awesome customer experience. They have price, quality and service.

Net sales for the last 52-week period totaled $222.7 billion, an increase of 16%. Net income was $5.8 billion. Revenue from membership fees increased by 9% to $4.2 billion. Costco has 847 locations with 583 in the US, 107 in Canada, 40 in Mexico and the balance in 11 other countries.

They have 304,000 employees. Starting wage is $17.50 an hour. They probably have the lowest employee turnover rate among all retailers in the world. Their retention rate is 90% for employees who have been with them for at least one year. Costco is maintaining a ratio of at least 50% of their employee base being full-time employees.

Two core ingredients required of a service leader are to have value employees and customers. Very rare for most organizations. In May 2003 I invested $1,000 each in 9 service leaders including Costco and Walmart. The $1,000 Costco stock investment as of December 6, 2022, is worth $19,944. Walmart and Sam's Club are one of its largest competitors and the stock is only worth $3,973. In 2000 when Lee Scott became CEO of Walmart they gave up their focus on customer service.

I have never been able to comprehend why executives do not understand the power of the service strategy. The market values a service leader with a dramatically higher stock valuation.

Price is critical. Costco always has killer prices and incredible quality. Everything has a money-back guarantee. As I travel around the world firms have too much overhead and too much waste. Very few firms understand how powerful price is. Too many stupid policies and rules. A huge roasted chicken at Costco is $4.98. I try to fill up my gas tank at Costco. The prices are at least $.20 a gallon cheaper than any other gas station. There are always about 40-50 cars in line, but it moves fast with all the gas pumps they have. The checkout lines are long, but they go super fast. One employee sets up the items in the cart for easy scanning and another employee scans them. It is difficult to leave the store without spending at least $150.

The average sales per warehouse are $245 million. Its stock outperforms the S&P 500 and S&P 500 Retail Index. In my book Relentless I selected Costco as a customer service role model. They are relentless.

John Tschohl Driving Passion for a Customer-Centric Culture

I did a series of seminars in Ethiopia and Zimbabwe in November. And while in Ethiopia I did Zoom seminars in Moscow and Vietnam.

Sergio Flores, our lead partner in Latin America has me doing two half-day seminars on January 25 and 26. No travel expenses.

Strategies for Customer Loyalty: Building Customer Service Culture
A LIVE seminar with John Tschohl

— Official website:

— January 25 & 26, Virtual Campus

Will be in English and Spanish. Contact
Whats App +52-1 55-6474-0712

Jose Luis Acevedo, our Distributor in Mexico has a Relentless service strategy seminar in Guadalajara on March 23, 2023. Jose Luis has sponsored over 20 seminars with me in Mexico.  
Whats App +52-1 33-1410-6000

If you want to have your entire leadership team to have passion and commitment to the Service Strategy, I encourage you to book me for a keynote 60-90 minutes or 1-2 day seminar. This means owning and dominating the market. I share with clients the Proven Process for Driving a Service Culture.

Every presentation is customized. I can do keynotes for 60-90 minutes or a full day or 1-2 day seminars. Seminars can be live or on Zoom. Visit my speaking site.

My 8 books can be used to reinforce the message I deliver. Most of my books are also in Spanish and Russian. Virtually no speakers have the depth of products to reinforce the service strategy message after they deliver their keynote. If you want to use me for a keynote or 1-2 day seminar in 2022, contact:

Carmen Velasco, VP Latin America & North America
Whats App 1-619-862-7694

John Tschohl
Cell/Whats App 1-612-382-5636

New Georgian Books

Palitra, my publisher in Georgia just released two of my books "Relentless" and "Empowerment" in Georgian. 

Certification Seminar in Minneapolis May 22-25, 2023 Virtual and In-Person

Our next Certification seminar is May 22-25, 2023, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It will be both virtual and in-person using Zoom. If you want to be certified and learn how to facilitate Feelings, our Flagship program and Leading Empowered Teams for an Awesome Customer Experience is a powerful way for you to advance your credentials and career and be able to buy participant material for these 2 programs at an 80% discount off your seminar prices.

Both programs are instructionally designed. All our programs are built around discovery learning. This means 80% of the time is a group discussion, not a facilitator talking. The programs are easy for you to facilitate.

If you need a visa, it is best to apply early. It might take up to 4 months to get a visa appointment. The US Embassy is super slow. If you need an invitation letter, let me know. All virtual participants are allowed to attend a future in-person Certification Seminar at no cost. 

Register or find additional information here.

SQI In The Media

Writing a “Relentless” Service Culture Plan
Retail Observer

Customer Service Heroes: Companies That Go the Extra Mile
CSM Magazine

The Need for Speed
HCM Sales

Writing a “Relentless” Service Culture Plan
Call Center Times

Why the Need for Speed is so important now
Today’s Restaurant

Reviewing Employee Performance
American Fastener Journal

The Need for Speed in Customer Service

Awesome Customer Service from the US Post Office
CSM Magazine

See All Media Articles