Organizational Lessons from Southwest Airlines

On 17.11.10, In Print & Design, by Daniel Callahan

Organizational Lessons from Southwest Airlines

If you are going to emulate the business practices of any company Southwest Airlines must be at the top of your list.  These principles have been tried and tested through thick and thin and have passed every test it has been thrust into.  The company has a set of values that are second to none their priorities begin right at home, “Employees First, Clients Second, and Stockholders Third”.  Highly profitable law firms implement similar priorities.  Having a set of values that remain adhered to through thick and thin goes a long way when push comes to shove.

Fiscal responsibility comes next on the priority list of highly profitable law firms.  At Southwest Airlines, the leadership that began with Herb Kelleher the co-founder and retired Chairman & CEO, philosophy was to maximize profitability with out cutting corners, paying employees below average wages, and waste.  Utilizing a fiscal policy that accrued substantial liquid assets, fiscal responsibility with purchase decisions such as utilizing a fleet of jets that are Boeing 737’s in order to minimize training & maintenance costs paid dividends.  When the airline industry as a whole has been stymied by high fuel costs and security challenges such as the 9/11 attacks Southwest Airlines stayed strong and true to their principles.

Implementing these strategies are simple to transfer into action for your highly profitable law firm.  Having a commitment to values that includes all parties of the firm, fiscal responsibility that ensures building a substantial prudent reserve and assets, and utilizing a professional to develop your branding image, logo, stationery, website, and staying consistent with your marketing strategy.  For instance, although it is not nearly the savings of purchasing and maintaining a fleet of  jets, utilizing a professional printing company that caters directly to the legal industry that will design professional stationery to suit all of your needs such as Wells and Drew with 100 years of experience is essential and can simplify your restocking process and ensure consistent replicable printing for many years to come.