Canadian Airlines See Successful December 2012
Major Canadian airlines Air Canada, WestJet and Porter released their December passenger traffic results today revealing record load factors for the industry.
Air Canada reported a record system load factor of 82.1 per cent in December, an increase of 1.1 per cent in comparison to December 2011, while the company saw an annual load factor of 82.7 per cent.
"For both the month of December and full year 2012, Air Canada achieved record load factors of 82.1 and 82.7 per cent, respectively," said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Led by increases in traffic in the U.S. transborder market of 6.6 per cent and in the Atlantic market of 5.1 per cent, Air Canada generated greater traffic for the month of December in all markets the airline serves with system wide growth of 3.2 per cent on a capacity increase of 1.8 per cent through higher utilization of our existing fleet. These strong results, for both the month and full year, underscore the effectiveness of Air Canada's disciplined capacity management and our award winning product. I want to thank our employees for taking care of the more than 33 million customers Air Canada served in 2012 and, above all, transporting them safely to their destination. Their professionalism and efforts in earning our customers' loyalty have been recognized by many industry awards, including the selection of Air Canada by frequent world travelers as the Best International Airline in North America."
Air Canada was recognized for its superior service as it was ranked as the “Best International Airline in North America” for the third consecutive year through an airline survey conducted by research firm Skytrax.
"We are very pleased to close out the year with six consecutive monthly load factor records and record high loads in all four quarters. Our positive momentum culminated in 2012 with a new single-day record of flying more than 57,000 guests on December 21st," said WestJet President and CEO Gregg Saretsky. "Our forward bookings continue to be strong and I want to thank our more than 9,000 WestJetters for their great efforts and caring attitudes, despite challenging weather, that ensured another memorable holiday travel season for our guests."
WestJet expects a successful 2013 due to the delivery of an addition of five Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft and seven Bombardier Q400 NextGen aircraft.
Additionally, Porter Airlines saw an increase in its December load traffic, reporting at 64.3 per cent with an increase of 0.4 points in comparison to 2011. Porters’ successful December brought passenger capacity for the airline to 2.45 million in 2012.
"Overall, Porter has finished 2012 by solidifying our gains for passenger numbers and load factor through the year," said Robert Deluce, president and CEO of Porter Airlines. "I want to thank our team for continuing to deliver a travel experience that is known to be distinct among our competitors. This emphasis on premium service will help us attract new customers and continue growing in 2013."
Marketing matters: from IBM to Kyndryl
Prior to joining Kyndryl as Chief Marketing Officer, Maria had a 25-year career at IBM, most recently as the tech giant’s CMO where she oversaw all marketing professionals and activities across North America, Canada and Latin America. She has held senior global marketing positions in a variety of disciplines and business units across IBM, most notably strategic initiatives in Smarter Cities and Watson Customer Engagement, as well as leading teams in services, business analytics, and mobile and industry solutions. She is known for her work with teams to leverage data, analytics and cloud technologies to build deeper engagements with customers and partners.
With a passion for marketing, business and people, and a recognized expert in data-driven marketing and brand engagement, Maria talks to Business Chief about her new role, her leadership style and what success means to her.
You've recently moved from IBM to Kyndryl, joining as CMO. Tell us about this exciting new role?
I’m Chief Marketing Officer for Kyndryl, the independent company that will be created following the separation from IBM of its Managed Infrastructure Services business, expected to occur by the end of 2021. My role is to plan, develop, and execute Kyndryl's marketing and advertising initiatives. This includes building a company culture and brand identity on which we base our marketing and advertising strategy.
We have an amazing opportunity ahead at Kyndryl to create a company brand that will stand apart in the market by leading with our people first. Once we are an independent company, each Kyndryl employee will advance the vital systems that power human progress. Our people are devoted, restless, empathetic, and anticipatory – key qualities needed as we build on existing customer relationships and cultivate new ones. Our people are at the heart of this business and I am deeply hopeful and excited for our future.
What experiences have helped prepare you for this new opportunity?
I’ve had a very rich and diverse career history at IBM that has lasted 25+ years. I started out in sales but landed explored opportunities at IBM in different roles, business units, geographies, and functions. Marketing and business are my passions and I landed on Marketing because it allowed me to utilize both my left and right brain, bringing together art and science. In college, I was no tonly a business major, but an art major. I love marketing because I can leverage my extensive knowledge of business, while also being able to think openly and creatively.
The opportunities I was given during my time at IBM and my natural curiosity have led me to the path I’m on now and there’s no better next career step than a once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity to help launch a company. The core of my role at Kyndryl is to create a culture centered on our people and growing up in my career at IBM has allowed me to see first-hand how to prioritize people and ensure they are at the heart of progress in everything Kyndryl will do.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I believe that people aren't your greatest assets, they are your only assets. My platform and background for leadership has always been grounded in authenticity to who I am and centered on diversity and inclusion. I immigrated to the US from Chile when I was 10 years old and so I know the power and beauty that comes from leaning into what makes you different from other people, and that's what I want every person in my marketing organization to feel – the value in bringing their most authentic self to work every day. The way our employees feel when they show up for themselves authentically is how they will also show up for our customers, and strong relationships drive growth.
I think this is especially true in light of a world forever changed by the pandemic. Living through such an unprecedented time has reinforced that we are all humans. We can't lead or care for one another without empathy and I think leaders everywhere have been reminded of this.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
When I was growing up as an immigrant in North Carolina, I often wanted to be just like everyone else. But my mother always told me: Be unique, be memorable – you have an authentic view and experience of the world that no one else will ever have, so don't try to be anyone else but you.
What does success look like to you?
I think the concept of success is multi-faceted. From a career perspective, being in a job where you're respected and appreciated, and where you can see how your contributions are providing value by motivating your teams to be better – that's success! From a personal perspective, there is no greater accomplishment than investing in the next generation. I love mentoring younger professionals – they are the future. I want my legacy as a leader to include providing value in work culture, but also in leaving a personal impact on the lives of professionals who will carry the workforce forward. Finding a position in life with a job and company that offers me a chance at all of that is what success looks like to me.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
I've always been a naturally curious person and it's easy for me to over-commit to projects that pique my interest. I've learned over years of practice how to manage that, so to my younger self I’d say… prioritize the things that are most important, and then become amazing at those things.