AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson doesn’t want to hear customers’ suggestions, referring customer mail containing actual suggestions to his legal team. That’s fair, we suppose: he wouldn’t want a customer to sue later on if a suggestion became a multimillion-dollar idea. Maybe the secret to getting a nice response to your suggestions from a CEO is simple: you need to be 8 years old.
Reader Laura (no relation) sent along this great series of correspondence between her 8-year-old son Ben and Delta Airlines. Maybe he sent his idea for finding lost planes to every airline he could think of, or maybe he picked only Delta, but he decided to send a letter and picture of his idea for locating airliners lost at sea along to the CEO.
Now, you can debate the validity of the kid’s idea, but he watched a TV program about how a jetliner could disappear, and proposed a solution that’s probably better than any aeronautics ideas that you’ve had lately. The CEO’s office sent his letter and drawing along to the relevant department, and they responded with not just a nice letter, but a package of fabulous Delta Airlines swag.
“He was so excited!” Laura writes. “It’s nice that a busy executive took a few minutes out of his day to help a little boy feel like his ideas are important.”
Boeing, Airbus… if you want to get in line to hire Ben in fifteen years or so, we can put you in touch.
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