10 / 07 / 2012
But Boesch never had to cope with turmoil such as the events of 9/11 or the crippling downturn of 2008-9.
In particular, he thinks the industry can pat itself on the back for not having a single terrorist attack in the years since 9/11.
“This is something that is very difficult to do, but most carriers have managed to meet the needs of this hugely growing sector of the air cargo industry.”A common thread across all these projects, Brooks reckons, is the quality of people in the top jobs, especially in the USA.
He singles out Neel Shah at Delta, Robbie Anderson at United, Michael Steen at Atlas, Sue Shaver at Airlines for America (formerly the Air Transport Association), Michael Vorwerk at CNS and Brandon Fried at the Airforwarders Association.
“That is a tax we have paid and got no value from. It is money that could have been supporting the industry.”
For example, he reckons many forwarders could not see a clear business case for it, and have found it hard to weigh the benefits of paper being removed against the added work of running two different processes in parallel during a transition period.
But he says many belly carriers are now smarter about pricing, focusing on the value of a particular piece of capacity to the customer rather than filling aircraft at any price.
“In other airline jobs you are in charge of one staff group such as food or scheduling, but in cargo you’re running a business. You are in charge of a fairly large enterprise and you are given a fair amount of freedom.