Air France – minority hold airline to ransom

Air France isn’t in Alitalia style danger. However around 30% of its work force – cabin and ground staff especially have been striking repeatedly in an effort to win a pay rise.

There has been no real pay increase since 2011, and the airline has in some ways recognised that, but the unions have refused to sign a deal that would give them 7% by 2020 provided the company made €220m annual profits. It’s already lost that much in strikes this year alone.

The CEO has had enough and putting his own job on the line, is personally consulting with all staff in groups to persuade them to vote differently after the union rejected the deal.

Sometimes you don’t always see how these things might affect you, even indirectly. Yet talking to friends they’d decided to drive to a business meeting in Paris and go on EuroTunnel rather than “risk” AirFrance. I subconsciously realised I’d riled AirFrance out of the equation booking flights to Detroit, going via Amsterdam and Delta.

Multiply this by thousands of customers, people who may never go back, whose good will is slowly sapped, and AirFrance has a genuine problem it urgently needs to resolve.

Unions need to understand the world is changing and relentless resistance to reality in the end, is a doomed cause.

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