Andy Cook, the newly appointed Gate Gourmet HR director who walked straight into the industrial dispute that brought the company and British Airways to a halt, puts his personal side of the story in our sister publication Personnel Today. He has minor regrets and major justifications concerning the affair. You can read his views here.
As I’ve said before, unfortunately I think this sort of firestorm is going to recur until the whole business model in the catering and handling sectors changes. These are largely dysfunctional businesses, failing to reward shareholders, management or staff. And often not exactly delighting the customer airlines – let alone paying passengers.
There’s a further problem in the UK in particular – although it’s true elsewhere – which is that both handling and catering need further consolidation. Right now everyone is trying to be the last to blink, but there are winners beginning to emerge and we can only hope that they create a sounder structure for the future as they negotiate with airlines.