It’s amazing where a simple survey can lead. Late last year our Qantas members were asked by the company to complete a few questions on who they go to with their workplace problems; their top 10.
The airline then took the top 10 and have used it to rate employees with those who received the most votes declared “workplace influencers”. They name them all Elvis; workplace stars who can assist them to introduce change and help spread misinformation to work colleagues. As fanciful as this sounds, attached to this notice is an article from Bill Synnot and Associates under their Centre of Excellence website page where Sandra Nieuwenhuijzen herself talks about the value of Elvis to Qantas.
Rather than fix countless issues that are leading to aircraft delays and mishaps, it seems the expansive team of managers are working on what’s basically a mind control program to bust unions and drive unsafe changes at Qantas.
Last week a group of LAMEs (not really named Elvis) were taken in for a second day of “collaboration meetings” which turned into a workshop. The workshop involved a scenario of a parent company wishing to win work on a new aircraft type. The groups were given information such as transit times and night stop workloads and asked to present a solution after considering all the limitations within the project.
Any objections raised to changes from a union perspective were quickly answered because this project is fictitious and the entire day was spent subtly steering the group to the only possible fantasy conclusion. After exploring all the options, the only correct answer that the attendees, with Sandra and other managers looking over their shoulders, could come up with was to set up a labour hire group to win the contract for the new work. The pretend scenario replicated Qantas and upcoming considerations for the 787s and how they’d like LAMEs to get used to the concept of this work being done by someone else.
No doubt Qantas then wanted these influencers to spread this fear, uncertainty and doubt to their workmates. However they forgot to consider that the LAMEs in the room are intelligent and have come straight to the ALAEA with their concerns over this mind control project. If you are directed to attend any of these meetings in the future, you should remind the managers present that they have a real airline to run. Let them know that the best way to seek change is to consult with the ALAEA and to stop treating our members as fools.