By now you know about the conversion of the Carnival Splendor from a cruise ship to raft after a fire in the engine room. Right after it happened I piled on by pointing out Carnival does everything possible to only be American when convenient or cheaper. That opinion hasn’t changed.
I’m an unlikely person to write something good that’s come from this incident, but I will!
You may have noticed as the passengers exited the ship they were in pretty good spirits. There haven’t been panels of disgruntled cruisers appearing on cable news or shows like Nightline. Why not?
Trust me, if they were there they’d be on TV!
So what made this disaster different from airline passengers being stranded on the runway?
The fire happened. That is a given. However, from that moment on Carnival’s crew did everything right.
The lesson to be learned is you’re judged by your intentions more than the result. It was obvious to everyone on board what Carnival’s intentions were: Make the best of a horrendous situation.
Bad customer service could have killed the Carnival brand. I suspect it will end up relatively unscathed.
Some of my opinions on this incident have been formed after reading John Heald’s blog. He is the Cruise Director on the Splendor and the liaison between the ship’s captain and the passengers. I can’t recommend it enough. It is an incredibly compelling read.
He says it’s an unvarnished recounting. It reads that way.
The following is going to be my honest and open account of what happened. It will be the truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth because that is what I always write here and this particular blog thingy must be no different. And besides…….that is what our President and CEO Gerry Cahill told me to write when I met with him today. – John Heald
Just below this entry I’ve embedded a YouTube video (the video is worthless, but the audio is clear) from the ‘all hands’ meeting hold onboard the Splendor once the passengers were gone. It is obviously being held after a job well done by a company that’s appreciative.
Why did the fire happen? We won’t know for a while. You have to hope it isn’t because corners were cut.
However, when new textbooks on customer service are written Carnival will surely deserve their own chapter.