The Incompetence of American Airlines

Dustin Curtis:

A few months ago, I wrote an article expressing my displeasure with American Airlines’ hideous online presence. I also spent some time mocking up a redesigned version of their website. To my surprise, a user experience designer at emailed me an amazing response describing some of the design problems faced in large corporations. You should read my original article here and the response from Mr. X here.

An hour after I posted the response, American Airlines fired Mr. X.

Worth reading in its entirety. What’s interesting isn’t that the guy got fired, but his insight into the culture of a failing company.

The bottom line is that American Airlines has talented designers on their UX team, but they’re unable to build a decent web site because the decisions are all made by executives with no taste for design, and no concern for customer experience. The experience of using the website matches the experience of taking an American Airlines flight: a mess.

Friday, 6 November 2009