Jose Alfonso, Darryl Owens & Michelle Salfity
Workshop: Communication Strategies for Airline Professionals
The communication strategies course for airline professionals was created by Boston Police Officers Jose Alfonso and Darryl Owens in response to a study by the Federal Aviation Administration on unruly passengers in early 2021. Data from the study on unruly passengers, as well as the input from industry professionals such as flight attendants and guest service agents, were used to develop an understanding of industry challenges. This course was modeled after best practices of law enforcement and medical professionals and is a comprehensive, practical de-escalation course constructed specifically for the airline industry. The presentation combines lecture, interactive discussion, analysis of airline industry videos and participant participation in multiple scenarios incorporating and applying best practices and techniques learned.
The objective of the course is to empower airline professionals with real skills and awareness to manage difficult situations while remaining safe and facilitating the de-escalation of guest’s/passenger’s behaviors when in crisis, ultimately avoiding conflict. The elements of de-escalation focused on the course are identify and understand emotions, the use of time, showing empathy, crafting the response, establishing rapport, and influencing behavioral change.