Striking the right note in announcements

02 October 2013

Tricky this – one person’s funny, is another’s irritation. I think passengers like staff to be individual, human and warm. While, if you are waiting in the rain not much is funny, many people value relief from corporate speak – being ‘authentic’ in modern management jargon.

On the train to Manchester earlier this week the guard was priceless. As expected he reeled off the usual information about tickets that are not valid on that service (why don’t they start on a positive note with the tickets that are valid?) and warnings about the dire consequences of having the ‘wrong’ ticket. But at the end, he said: “… sorry to sound like the prophet of doom but the ticket system is complicated.” Couldn’t have put it better myself.

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