Amar Bail

A plant of eternity

Sweetly done

Posted by Haris Gulzar on September 3, 2009

I experienced the exchange of some very sweet words during my flight from Lahore to Karachi. And as soon as I heard those words, I decided I’ll blog about it :-). I think the plane had just taken off when a somewhat loud voice got the attention of the passing by airhostess. (The conversation here is not accurate to the word, but I hope you get the gist of it)

Man (In an Urdu accent, very loudly): Hello!!!

Airhostess (smilingly): Ji sir, kya chahiye aapko? (Yes sir, what do you want?)

Man: Aaj ka Akhbar de dain (Give me today’s newspaper)

Airhostess: Ji sir main abhi le aati houn, aur doosri baat ye ke kisi ko “Hello” bol ker nahi bulatay, agar koi cheez chahiye ho tou call bell daba diya karain. (Yes sir, I’ll bring it right away, and secondly, you don’t call out on anyone by saying “Hello”, if you want something, you can press the call bell).

The airhostess passed a smile and left immediately, making that person totally answerless. Now the point of this post is, I liked the way that airhostess corrected this person, and the boldness with which she told him to give respect while calling on someone. It was not a specific correction from this airhostess, it was totally general and in a very polite tone as well. The airhostess didn’t loose temper on the way that man called out on her, but she not only turned around and came back to this man to listen to what he had to say, but also taught him some manners. I think what this airhostess did was the right thing to do. What do you think?


37 Responses to “Sweetly done”

  1. […] This cup of tea was served by: Amar Bail […]

  2. Can’t really say. Sometimes I feel that Airhostesses act or trained to be stoics =P

  3. brocasarea said

    indeed sweet…thts the communucation skill we shd have…:)

  4. Asad Ali said

    hummm…thats probably too much straight forwardness… Air hostess doesn’t need to teach him how to call some one…after all customer is the king. If I see this as a professional I would say its not right , keeping in view our culture and environment.
    There can be certain other techniques like… She could have gone quietly to get the newspapers and on her way back…she can convey her message by saying “Sir.! If you need anything else , here’s is bell , please don’t hesitate to ring it up.We will be happy to serve you..bla bla….”
    What do u think???

    P.S : Next time if you get a chance to fly by same flight… try saying Hello..and teach her some lessons your readers are suggesting here:) Lolz..

    & Yeah..Back to pavilion. haaan..? Have a nice time…

  5. @Raheel: Thats a new word for me :-). Yeah maybe they’re trained that way but the passengers should be a bit careful as well I think…

    @Brocasarea: Being bold you mean 🙂 😀

    @Asad Ali: Customer is definitely the king but the king should know some manners as well :-). And besides, the “Hello” that the customer said was not the english one, it was the urdu version, the one we use to call out someone whose name we dont know.
    Well Actually, I’m back to the batting creeze, my innings has started :-). Thank you so very much for your wishes.

  6. Asad Ali said

    O yaar.. there are only two rules when dealing with customer..
    Rule # 1- Customer is always right…
    Rule # 2 – If customer is wrong, refer to Rule # 1
    I understand what you are saying..but despite of doing it sweetly , I think that wasn’t right…

    You r welcome..:) and do play well…(Y)

  7. nadia said

    I don’t find anything inappropriate in the cabin crew’s way of handling the man’s rudeness (trying to get someone’s attention by calling out ‘hello’ is definitely rude, specially also because some of our fellow desis say that word with an attitude). So he’s a passenger, paying a huge sum to be in the aircraft, but that doesn’t allow him to treat the crew as his servant (when even servants shouldn’t be addressed in such manner).

    If this man – for whatever reason – is innocently unaware that his behavior is considered rude and disrespectful, then it’s just right that the crew informed him about it, with a smile 🙂

  8. @Asad: I used to word manners in my previous reply, I should have rather used “Respect”. I agree that customer is the king, and so he did get the newspaper, but he should have shown some respect for the lady. He could have said “Excuse me”, or if he didn’t know english, which is totally ok, then he could have said “Baat sunain” or anything similar, but showing disrespect was wrong, I think…

    And yeah, I’m trying to play well, but the pitch is too grassy and the ball seems and spins a lot :-), besides the one-for-the-over bouncer thats terrifying me all the more 🙂 hehe.

    @Nadia: I second that. And I think, it didn’t make the flight service look bad either. I mean the air hostess was polite and smiled even after she was called rudely…

  9. siras said

    I think she handled the situation perfectly, she wasn’t rude and she got her point across, because definitely nothing gave that an the right to be disrespectful.

  10. siras said


  11. @Siras: Exactly. She didn’t let the person feel bad by talking politely to him and smiling, and she got her point across as well…

  12. Huda said

    Yeah, I agree with everyone who thinks that the Airhostess handled the situation pretty well!

  13. jman said

    Maybe the customer didnt know better and she could have ignored it THAT time.

    Most of the airhostesses, im sure, would be well mannered enough not correct a passenger!

  14. You should LEARN from this 😀

    According to my own experience with my kids to strangers, I have noticed that sweetness kills:D

    Alhamdolillah people listen if you’re nice and yet firm.. She ahndled it well, I think.

  15. Agree with Asad,Customer is the king and Air hostess should have adopted the way Asad mentioned in his first comment.

  16. hmmm i m trying to picture this…
    maybe. maybe not!

  17. Asad Ali said

    @ Haris –
    hummm:) Still I will stick to my point …:), he should have talked respectfully(that’s another thing) but she must not teach her “how to Respect” or “Manners”…

    Hahahah…well reported the pitch conditions…,I hope you will always wear the helmet & ur bat will always be ready to Face such “bouncers” out for the Spin ..especially the “Doosra” ( I hope u understand what I am saying)…:)

    @ Jman – good remarks 🙂

  18. Nikki said

    Yeah I too feel that what she did was right, because teaching someone a good thing in a good way is widely accepted but teaching something in a bad way certainly not accepted. Certainly not after what happened to that bus conductor :S

  19. Absar said

    Hehe, well done! 😀 It’s really saddening to see waise how people treat air hostesses, secretaries, waitresses, you know? Not particularly in connection with this dialog, just generally speaking.

  20. zain said

    that was a good way to correct the man. the air hostess acted as a professional woman

  21. and how many of us would correct a person for his or her bad behaviour/language instead of going back and doing back biting

  22. @Jman: Well, the airhostess was definitely well mannered. I mean the way she talked was polite, and the words she chose were no way in contrast with good manners. Besides, she was smiling as well…

    @Alhamdolillah: We all should learn from this 🙂

    @Absar: Welcome to Amar Bail. You’re right. Treating our juniors, sub-ordinates, less privileged the way we do has probably become our nature…

    @Yesterdaywasbetter: True! So very true!

  23. yaseen ch said

    Airhostess is just a worker and customer pay for it ,she need not become teacher as lot of girls think they are too mannered but they are not. Stay in ur space.

  24. nadia said

    It really saddens me that some of us think that people in the customer service related fields – like cabin crews – are “just workers” and that customers are paying for it. Does that give customers the right to be disrespectful? And aren’t we all workers in one way or the other?

  25. @Yaseen: Why doesnt the man need to stay in his space? He paid for the service, not to be rude with those who provide service. Anyways, thats my point of view. You can obviously have yours…

    @Nadia: Rightly said. How would we feel if someone insults us and then says, I paid for it…

  26. masood said

    Absolutely good and well needed post.I had some nasty experiences and bad behaviors with Air hostess by some passengers, which I really felt bad and sorry for the guys who don’t understand the value of a behavior.

    @ Asad: Is this is what we learn t from our parents to teach the person who is doing her duty? Imagine you run a business and customer misbehaves saying you “Hello” or equal words in Urdu, am sure you will not like it and you may handle the situation in wilderness. We need to grow up, dude and save our Islamic dignity with our behaviors around.

    @Jman: If the passenger might not know how to call, then there is nothing wrong in teaching him. My question here to all who thinks, Air hostess was wrong, is that why are you guys not taking in a positive attitude? only because she is serving? whoever thinks that Job doers like secretaries, Air hostess etc., are servants then they must have ill manner instinct in them. Our Islam teaches to respect and give honor to even servants, treat them with humanity. Where are we standing to our Islamic Standards?

  27. @Masood Bhai: Thank you so very much for the much needed reply. I think the problem with us is that we don’t like to be corrected. We can’t accept by nature that we did something wrong. I mean, that lady taught the man some respect. I’d say, she earned much more respect only because she responded the way she did. She told the customer to use the call bell so that the next time he travels, he knows the norms of calling the servicemen/servicewomen. She talked politely, she smiled, she listened to him even after he called her rudely, she brought him the newspaper, and besides, she taught him some very valuable lesson as well. What exactly is wrong there?

    The passenger might not have deliberately used the word he did, as in it might have been abrupt and instinct, but he should know that others deserve some respect and you should think what word to use to call someone before you start using words that are not acceptable.

  28. Asad Ali said

    @ Masood…

    Brother, I don’t think any of my saying goes against islamic dignity, you are very right that we should behave in a good way,however until & unless one is serving customers practically , it would be difficult for him to understand this…& as for as the behavior is concerned.. I think if she would have behaved in the way that was suggested in my comment, may be she could have inculcated more than just good behavior.
    Moreover, I am not advocating the customer , he was wrong ,yet he is right…

    And what do you think , what would have happened in the flight if he had lost his temper, when she tried to taught him “behavior” saying “aur doosri baat ye ke………” ???? That’s what I think is essential in such situations..i.e; to avoid “what’s cumming next”.

    I think our parents, everyday teach us to be exemplary…& proactive, instead of being reactive..& as for as imaging myself in such situation with a customer is concerned, I would still have not gone to that extent…(But once he left…………..I would have…………..):)

  29. Communication skills are actually taught to them and they learn to handle everything with care and manners…but we should learn all this by ourself being a human……….

  30. jman said

    May i inject some humour back into this situation?

    My previous comment was in regards with my personal experience with PIA hostesses.

    Gone are the days when airhostessting was a fancy profession. These days they have long flights with your noisy kids. Can you blame them for looking so miserable? ( note, this is only for PIA).

    I have found other hostesses on other airplanes, a far more pleasant experience.

    I still stand by my original statement. She could have just said if the guy wanted something he could just ring the bell. Instead of lecturing.

    One PIA airhostess once told me that people think since they have paid…they now own the airhostesses. I say whats wrong with that? HA

  31. masood said

    @Asad: I appreciate you took my words in the right sense. I guess the way of teaching differs from person to person, isn’t it? So is the difference we feel in her suggestions.

    @Jman: We never own any person with money rather with the charming sense. Would you like to be a slave when somebody pays to have a service from you? This is where the professionalism counts 🙂

  32. Umer Toor said

    “Customer is always right”

    May we not make them God (Ilah) for mere profit maximization

  33. jman said

    Its just the manner of how she corrected the person that i object to. But thats my personal opinion. And many of you here dont agree with it. All I am saying is that people working in customer services have to put up with a lot of stick.

    She could always use the alterior method listed in the airhostesses manual.

    “In the event of a rude customers, lock their children in the toilet and beat their parents with some miswak” (A blog that will beat you up with some miswak)

  34. masood said

    @Jman: I’ve no better clue of suggesting a person than the Air hostess has done. Can you suggest anything more pleasing?

  35. jman said

    Thinking back i do recall myself saying “hello” to get someone’s attention. It worked a treat back then.

    I think we all know how long it takes an airhostess to respond to one of those bell/illuminated flashing lady on the ceiling bulbs!

    To be honest im not going to sit there waiting for someone to see that same flashing bulb, when it is quicker for me to get what i want by just asking the airhostess in view.

    I do agree with how the lady addressed the situation, i just think her methods could have been slightly more subtle and less agressive! (The blog that is politer than a flying airhostess)Ha

  36. masood said

    @jman: That’s the procedure, dude to call Air Hostess for any service. Otherwise the whole Air craft will turn into a big mess of Hello’s and etc etc… 🙂

  37. jman said

    “ello ello”…..hey maybe thats what the guy was thinking.!

    Dude im not disputing the method…just how it was done!

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