At the end of the 2022 Travel with Friends trip, we were scheduled to fly Iberia Airlines from Rome to Madrid, change planes and fly from Madrid to Dallas. Iberia’s plane leaving Rome was an hour and a half late so we missed our connection which was the only daily flight that would get us to Dallas.
We were disappointed, frustrated, and tired. I thought of creating a don’tflyiberia.com website. But, Iberia’s staff was apologetic, empathetic, and worked hard to get all 25 of us good seats on the next day’s flight.
They were obliged to provide housing for the layover. I was expecting a simple Motel 6-type hotel, but they put us in a lovely four-star hotel, gave us vouchers for a nice dinner and breakfast, and paid for our transfers from the airport to the hotel. Our thinking went from “ugh, we missed our flight” to “wow, we get to spend the night in Madrid.”
Because of Iberia’s good response to the bad situation, that they had created, I thought more highly of them after the incident than I had before. I thought of starting an iloveiberia.com website.
This principle also works in human relationships. When you offend someone, sincerely apologize, make restitution, and try not to do it again, and the relationship may become stronger than it was before.
Life is complicated, and humans and organizations make mistakes. That’s inevitable and even acceptable. How we handle our mistakes makes all the difference.
When was the last time you made a mistake that adversely affected other people? How did you handle the situation? Did your response improve the relationship?