Swot Analysis : Southwest Airlines

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In 1996, Rolling King, an entrepreneur who owned a small commuter air service, approached Herb Kelleher’s law office about a plan to start a low-cost/low-fare airline that would transport passengers between San Antonio, Dallas, and Houston. Southwest Airlines, Inc. (SWA), was founded in 1971, in Dallas Texas, flying Boeing B737 aircraft, is one of the largest airlines in the United States (Eroglu, O, 2015). Southwest together with AirTran and forty-one plus years of profitability covers more than ninety destinations throughout the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Mexico, Jamaica, The Bahamas, Aruba, and Dominican Republic (Southwest Airlines Co, 2015). Combined with AirTran the company operates approximately 3,800 flights a day offering more than five hundred round trip markets. SWA employs an estimated 45,000 people, working to provide outstanding customer service throughout the systems. As of December 31, 2013 Southwest and AirTran total fleet combined consist of 680 Boeing aircraft (Southwest Airlines Co, 2015). The Southwest business model consist of two parts, identifying the customer they want to serve and being the low cost provider .Since its inception, SWA has been minimizing its operating expenses. The company operates a uniform single aircraft type to minimize maintenance and training costs. SWA uses a ticketless booking system in its reservation center. The website directly reduces distribution costs. Also the company does not serve meals, although passengers are encouraged to bring food on the plane. SWA operate out airports near major metropolitan areas in medium-sized cities (Eroglu, O., 2015). However, the airline has made a shift to target corporate travel from Fortune... ... middle of paper ... ..., cars by providing with the fastest as well as the less expensive service. In order to support the strategy the company decided to fly only one type of airplane, the Boeing 737, and to substitute linear flying for the hub-and-spoke model. However the largest contributor to the success at Southwest is its culture and employees. “Your spirit,” says Mr. Kelleher,, is “the most powerful thing of all.” Given the success of Southwest Airlines CEO, I think the assignment would be difficult due to influences that the founder has on the Company. However, “If you are the chief executive of a company that is sailing with the wind and leading in its competitive race, that’s a sign that your culture is in sync with your strategy. This makes your company much more likely to deliver consistent and attractive profitability and growth results”(Katzenback, J., & Aguirre, D., 2013).
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