Rasmus Ankersen shares his admiration for Ryan Air – and what makes Ryan Air so successful…
I must admit that I’m a fan of Ryan Air. Not a really hard core fan. More a silent admirer of the company’s ability to cut the crap and focus on doing a few things better than everyone else.
Today Ryan Air is Europe’s biggest airline hosting more than 70 million passengers every year. In 2012 the company made a profit of 550 million Euro. However, in many ways the success of Ryan Air doesn’t make any sense if you listen to all the classic management books emphasising the correlation between success and delivering an outstanding customer experience. Ryan Air provides a mediocre customer experience and has even been named as UK’s worst family brand. So you may be asking yourself the same question as I have asked myself: If customer experience is so crucial why is Ryan Air then so successful?
I think Ryan Air teaches us two really interesting lessons:
Many organisations over-promise and under-deliver in their pursuit to attract customers. Ryan Air is no nonsense. They don’t promise anything that they cannot deliver. They don’t pretend to be something they are not. As a customer you know exactly what you get and what you don’t get. And you always have a choice. If you don’t want to pay for food, then don’t eat on the plane. If you don’t want to pay for checking in baggage, then travel without big suitcases.
Focus on doing a few things really well:
Way too many companies believe that they need to outperform the competition on all parameters. Often the result is that they end up becoming not really great and not really bad at a lot of things. Ryan Air does not aim to do 100 things pretty good. They focus on doing two things better than everybody else. First of all they transport you safely from A to B at the market’s cheapest price, and secondly they land on time on more than 90% of their departures, beating every other European airline.
My point is that you can do a lot things bad and provide a mediocre customer experience, but still be very successful as long as you do one or two things better than everyone else.
Rasmus Ankersen published his first book “DNA of a Winner” at the age of 22. The book became a bestseller, encouraging Rasmus to follow up his success with “Leader DNA” and “Raising a Winner“. By the age of 25 he had written three bestsellers. His desire to understand the code that unlocks World Class performance led him to be head coach of the first soccer academy in Scandinavia, which has produced several top international players, among them Simon Kjaer (Wolfsburg and Denmark National Team), Winston Reid (West Ham), Sekou Oliseh (top scorer in CSKA Moscow) and many more. He was also a mental coach for the Danish national youth soccer teams and has worked as personal coach for several World Class athletes. In 2010 Rasmus spent six months traveling around the world to live and train with the best athletes and coaches on the globe. The result is his first international book “The Gold Mine Effect – unlocking the essence of world class performance” which is currently on submissions to publishers worldwide.
Also in the business field Rasmus’ work has had a huge impact. He is speaking about “The Gold Mine Effect” for organizations and companies all over the world, Microsoft, LEGO, Carlsberg etc. Rasmus is advising executives how to create an environment, which fires up human potential. In his home country Denmark he has been awarded as one of the three biggest business talents and recently the prime minister invited him to contribute with a chapter to his upcoming book, which is going to define “The Danish Dream”. Today Rasmus lives in London from where he controls all his projects.