The Rufus Factor
    United Airlines is a huge player in the increasingly challenged travel industry. Problems seem to just keep mounting as all the carriers jockey for their positions around that “Not-too-big-to-fail” threshold. But United Airlines has at least one special asset which it may have overlooked while concentrating on trying to slow the flow of red ink.
    Glance around the boarding area at the Denver hub of United and you just might be lucky enough to experience a man named Rufus Lovett. You won't miss Rufus if he is working your gate; he’s the guy greeting and guiding passengers preparing to board and he does his job with a flair that goes so much further in meeting human needs.
    You know the scene — harried travelers milling about in those final moments before boarding. The P.A. mumbles incomprehensible instructions to the herd as everyone tries to gather bags, kids and snacks while fumbling for the boarding pass. Some may even try to recover a little of the dignity left at security screening before they again surge forward to be packed into that tight metal tube intended to catapult all to the next city.
    A friend recently encountered Rufus in just such an environment. He was greeting and directing passengers — and probably doing a little final security screening as well — but he was also quick to give a smile, direct eye contact, an outstretched hand, sometimes a caring touch on the shoulder, and even open arms offering hugs to all who wanted. “All sorts of people were standing in line for their hugs,” my friend said. “Well, I wanted my hug too! I waited patiently at the end of the long boarding line eagerly awaiting my turn. I told him his manner was really making a difference in many people's lives.”
    “You could tell he was sincere,” She continued, “He was absolutely not offering fake hugs and smiles. This was the real thing.” The plane loaded, and my friend noticed a difference in her fellow passengers. “Strangers were chatting, everybody seemed to be having an unusually good time.” The good mood continued even as the plane pulled away from the gate. Even when the plane stopped and returned to the gate. And, the mood was even friendly and relaxed as the pilot announced everyone would have to disembark and make other arrangements if possible.
    The flight finally did take off four hours later with a new plane. On arrival, the captain thanked everyone for their patience. My friend made a point of telling him how Rufus was the difference in making the delay palpable. She also vowed to write a note to corporate headquarters about her actual experience of friendly skies.
    There are many people like Rufus, but there is always room for more. Perhaps you are one of these special human assets.
    Or maybe you can become one.
    Well, how about some of the time?
    Me too.

(Have you ever experience someone like Rufus, quietly making a difference in the lives of people? Tell us about your experience. Please Email us at editor@JoyofCrisis.commailto:editor@JoyofCrisis.comshapeimage_2_link_0

ARTICLE LINKS
Click on Titles to Explore . . .

Where Do We Go From Here?
Most of us will do anything we can to avoid the loss of stability — indeed, the pain — of crisis. Yet, it is within this this time of disruption that a new beginning can be found.

Flowing With The Four Winds
Show Up
Be Receptive
Speak Your Own Truth
Don’t Be Attached to the Outcome

Driving Into a Prehistoric Dawn
This article is the start of a series
that takes a long view of our place
in history triggered by a personal experience of touching the distant past.

Something Strange Happened
Scientists debate the possible causes and meanings of a major crisis that occurred about 13,000 years ago. This second article in the series explores what is known of the rapid changes of that time, and explores possible causes.

What Might They (Someday) Think of Us?
After looking back to prehistoric events, consider now how our present time may be viewed from the far distant future.

Somewhere
The series concludes by checking in on some special artifacts of our own time awaiting discovery by those 13,000 years in the future.

Eating Away at Plastic Pollution
A Canadian teen gets tired of plastic bag clutter and finds a way to help nature 

Friendly Skies of Rufus 
Customer satisfaction may be at an all time low, but sometimes one person really can make a difference.

Future Articles . . .
The Hero’s Journey
Do we answer the Call of the Hero’s Journey or slip back into a continuing complacency?  The choice is ours as a society, and especially as individuals in choosing who we are and who we shall become.

Unintended Consequences
Galileo cautioned that protective efforts may lead to even greater damage. 

Moderation 
Today’s solution may become tomorrow’s problem.

New Neural Networks

Bottom/Up Planning

The Problem with Panic
The responses that cause panic attacks today helped our ancestors survive and get us this far, but times have changed

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