3 AirAsia Success Factors that entrepreneurs should look at to grow their businesses. 10 years on after taking a bold chance to start a low cost airline, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes has built AirAsia from two planes to 115 aircraft today, flying to more than 400 destinations spanning 25 countries, making the slogan “Now Everyone Can Fly” comes true.
So what are AirAsia Success Factors?
When the music industry failed to adapt quickly to the World Wide Web, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes decided to make a clean break. He left his job to pursue a childhood dream: Set up Asia’s 1st ever Low Cost Airline.
In my opinion, Air Asia has not just only revolutionized the entire airline industry but more significantly, it has allowed more Malaysians especially the younger generation to travel abroad and see the world.
This experience has enabled many Malaysians to be critical to the nation’s developments; they count the blessing of their mother land but at the same time, give constructive criticism by comparing to more developed nation as well as to progress which went awry.
There are indeed, a lot of lessons for Start Up to take home from AirAsia stories. Tan Sri Tony Fernandes has shared with BBC on his way of doing business.
He adopts a “walk around” management style. “If you sit up in your ivory tower and just look at financial reports, you’re doing to make some big mistakes.” For a few days every month he works on ground or in the cabin crew and he made important decisions by getting the feedback from the crew.
Being a big fan of AirAsia and its business model, there are 3 AirAsia success factors to learn from:
1. Never afraid to challenge the norm.
A few years ago, people had to call a travel agent or airline operator to buy a flight ticket. Air Asia challenged the norm by riding on the e-commerce wave. It invested in a user-friendly website interface and allows travelers to book and print flight ticket anytime and also introduce online check in services. This has proven to be enormously successful especially in engaging with the Gen-Y customers.
2. Dare to Think Big and Serve the right Customer
Air Asia business model has always been focusing in low cost operation and serving the mass market. They know their targeted customers well and do not directly compete with other premium airlines. 10 years ago traveling by air was a luxury. Air Asia was daring enough to think big and today, it is truly “Everyone Can Fly”.
3. Create Complementary business opportunities, they can be Huge
This is shared by Luke Bong and I think it is an exemplary example for businesses to learn.
When we fly AirAsia, most likely we will use their services such as Sky Bus from KL Sentral or stay at Tune Hotel. It is very important to think of innovative ways to get more out of your existing customers.
The question is not about how to squeeze more profit out of the existing operations, but how to provide add on values so that customers are willing to pay for even more.
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