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If one looks up the most famous names in travel, he is sure to come across Thomas Cook. 1841 marked the inception of this international travel company. Gradually growing from humble settings Cook came up with one of a kind company dedicated to making the whole world accessible for Britons. Today Thomas Cook is a very big name with several brands under it. It has an airline by the name Thomas Cook Airlines equipped with 44 aircrafts which fly worldwide. It has a variety of financial services as well which includes Thomas Cook's passport and credit card.
The current form of Thomas Cook is the result of a merger which took place between Thomas Cook and My Travel. The company is working and controlling all its operations to stay on the top.
Thomas cook works in different areas, including UK and Ireland, continental Europe, northern Europe, North America and Germany. The most number of passengers are catered are in Continental Europe and the count reaches up to 7.5 million.
Thomas Cook Group has a portfolio full of travel brands that are leading the market currently. Thomas Cook strives hard on offering the most optimum quality products and services to their stakeholder. They never let the shareholder value to decrease.
As all the leading organizations understand the importance of their customers so does Thomas Cook and hence they constantly look for the feedback from their customers once they have availed their services. There are questionnaires and all other sorts of feedback techniques that facilitate the analysis of each individual service that they give. Then accordingly they make the improvements and the changes necessary.
With a very vast experience Thomas Cook is the excelling brand in travel. If you are looking reliability, flexibility and value for money, Thomas Cook is the company you are looking for. What is the factor that makes them unbeatable? It ultimately comes down to the people that work for the organization. Thomas Cook has over 34,000 employees worldwide, and this organization knows how to choose the best and then retain them.
Investors are the one of the main asset that the any organization relishes besides good customers. Thomas Cook has its set of loyal investors and to keep them happy it ensures open communication with all the shareholders. This exchange of concerns is done inside an investor relations framework and is a very structured one so as to leave no room for mistakes. There are formal presentations held to inform them of the financial conditions annually and quarterly, different sorts of trading statement. There are also other more regular meetings between the top management and the investors.
If the core product of the company is effective that becomes the foundation for its success. Hence Thomas Cook invests a lot of time and resources to ensure that everything goes right.
Making the right product is the main element that adds to the value for customers as well. For this purpose Thomas Cook has made a specialized team which has the sole purpose of assuring the quality and keeping tabs on product performance and keeps all the managers updated with regard to any potential problem.
The cardinal measures that the company adopts are
Punctuality, ensuring flights are on time.
Taking customer services very seriously so as to minimize the number of complaints
The questionnaires filled by customer, getting them catered from a third party.
Thomas Cook's Code of Conduct:
Thomas cook has a strong set of values. There is a set of five values that all the employees share and it defines what the company stands for and it operates. These five values hold great importance for everyone that works in Thomas Cook because the employees believe that it is their persistence with these values which is causing their maintained success. It also facilitates their effective customer services which of course can make or kill any organization. They have an interesting way of referring to these values. It is said once you follow these values, you'll be PROUD to put on your Thomas Cook badge.
The five PROUD values are:
Pioneering our future; In Thomas Cook the culture that is encouraged is of improvement. Nobody should fear taking on ownership and enhancing every opportunity that is thrown their way. Learning from their past mistakes and making the future most profitable is also one of their virtue. At Thomas Cook employees believe that they can't stay stagnant, they have to keep innovating to stay one stay one step ahead of all the copy cats.
Results orientated; The success of any organization or individual as a matter of fact depends upon the achievement of the preset goals and aims. So is the notion embraced by Thomas Cook, it becomes the driving force for attaining their goals, working for betterment and raising the stakes every time. Flexibility is a virtue that is encouraged and taking responsibility is greatly appreciated.
Obsessed with customer service:
"Customer is the king", this rule is incorporated in every company's mission statement. When you are catering to the masses and are depending on them for your revenues, it will be very dumb to not give due importance, respect to them. Thomas cook is always working on making their service better. Their main focus is their customers and hence they take their feedback very seriously, readily solving the problems that the customers come across. Thomas cook tries to ensure such standards of service which will make the customers keep coming back.
United as one team; companies who have no harmony get ripped apart in no time. Team has a very significant meaning, Together Everyone Achieves More. At Thomas Cook everyone has clear perspectives on their team work. For them it is about being able to communicate effectively, giving each other the boost as they are moving towards the same goal, respecting each other's views and ideas. Jealousy and bullying are the demerits that eat up a progressive organization.
Driving robust decisions; one bad decision at the worst time can turn an organization upside down, on the other hand if an astute decision is thought of and is executed at the right time can change the whole situation for the organization for good. For Thomas Cook employees understand they have to be objective, scour all the options and then coming up with the best choice. Picking the most easy and safe option might get you through for some years but in this competitive world one has to constantly be on his toes to sustain. The bigger the risk, the better is the result.
Thomas Cook also believes in concepts like Diversity, Equal Employment Opportunity, and protected class and so on so forth. It has worked on a system that assures the efficient inculcation of such norms.
In Thomas Cook the range of dimensions making a distinction in people is considered to be an asset. Normally that does not happen. Companies readily fall victim to notions like glass ceiling, glass walls and reverse discrimination.
But Thomas Cook endorses and promotes the diversity that its people bring in. To not fall victim to certain discriminatory policies it has adopted a staunch management and efficient policies that would ease and ensure their support for all their employees.
Thomas cook acclaims to have treated everyone fairly so far by basing their evaluation on solely individual virtues and capabilities considered against the business needs. They have created in itself an ideal system, and to keep every thing running smooth strict actions are taken against any type of discrimination that arises due to factors like nationality, ethnicity, sexual origin, age, religious beliefs, race color or any sort of physical disability.
Not only does Thomas Cook provide equal employment opportunities for everyone but it helps its existing and potential employees in all possible ways. The main asset that they flaunt for Thomas Cook is their hard working employees.
Firstly anyone can apply for any job in Thomas Cook if he/she is qualified. There is no discrimination is the recruiting process. Once a candidate is taken aboard he/she is trained for 7 days, polishing their skills and then they are off to work. Once the contract is over, Thomas Cook does not dispose off his loyal employees. They find ways to keep the talent within the organization by changing their positions and other means.
Thomas Cook values loyalty by employees and customers. There is a culture of deep trust among all the employees, and this trust is transferred to customer which adds to their loyalty.
Also Thomas Cook does not discriminate against ex offenders. If the person comes clean with his crime in earlier stages of the recruitment process, he won't be necessarily barred from working in the organization. Policy Statement on the Recruitment of Ex-Offenders is provided by the company. And the person is then evaluated on the position he is opting for and the nature of the offence he has committed and then coming with the best for the company as well as the candidate.
But to be considered the interested candidate should be straight to the company with regard to his crime record. Company has a strict policy of withdrawing any one who tries to hide this fact. At the same time it assures fair treatment to all.
Code of conduct helps organizations with their recognition. Every company has it own way of dealing with its code of conduct. Some succeed in finding their and some fail.
To conclude it all Thomas Cook has a strong code of conduct. It has some conspicuous set of rules and procedures that it follows. From this persistence the culture that evolves leads to success all the way. The organization works for the benefit of its stakeholders and cherishes the trust, loyalty they get in return.
Thomas Cook's Corporate Social Responsibility:
CSR is a crucial element for any organization. It augments to the goodwill of the company. The conventional definition of CSR would a type of corporate self initiation inculcated in a business model, but Thomas Cook has its own definition. For them CSR is working towards the goal of curtailing the negative and adding to their positive carbon footprint in reference to social, environmental and the economic factors. This they believe would be able to ensure a pro longed existence of their business and the resources they are dependant on.
They have an extensive CSR team, which works around the clock to ensure that they come up with some strategies that facilitate their objective of making a difference in this world.
The sustainability team is the one who takes the aim of administrating and conveying the consequences of their social and environmental actions. This is the team that has to incorporate Corporate Social Responsibility into their routine business culture.
Thomas Cooks CSR structure:
As pressed upon again and again CSR is a very cardinal concern for the board. It is not just a random body put only in papers to gain goodwill. It has a proper structure, a proper committee called Health, safety and environmental committee headed by Roger Burnell, which keeps an eye on all the operating companies. This committee is liable for keeping tabs on the risks related to environment, forming and implying policies as well.
There have been many changes in the structure of the organization down the road to ensure effective and efficient administration of health and wellbeing of customer as well as the employees.
Thomas Cooks CSR partners:
To enhance the efficiency and impact of CSR there are several number of partners that Thomas Cook works with.
The travel foundation:
Thomas Cook is working with a charity called Travel Foundation to help discover useful ways to build up and put into practice liable travel. This activity is helping Thomas Cook sticking to new responsible policies.
They have been in partnership with Enable Holidays and became the cardinal tour operator to sell holidays to people with impaired mobility. Enable Holidays is an organization which works to facilitate the travel wheelchair user and their surroundings. As Thomas Cook is a pioneer in the travel industry so it is taking this opportunity to help.
Also in relation with WRAP which helps Thomas Cook with the recycling of paper.
Expanding your horizon:
Even if the company is working very efficiently on CSR all the goals cannot be achieved without the help from stakeholders. If the company is very staunch with values like CSR it can easily transfer them to customers, employees and suppliers. Sometimes unexpectedly it is these other elements that make the most if the impact.
At Thomas Cook much effort is pressed upon updating the employees about CSR, why is it essential for the society and for the business. By making them realize the crucial importance the customers also take part. Thomas Cook also informs them ways of how they can contribute.
Also Thomas Cook incorporates supply chain in their CSR as well. For this purpose they work with suppliers to attain the maintenance standards crucial for industry's long lasting success and future.
Thomas Cook believes that the social and the environmental impacts are related to the places they serve in and the suppliers that they cater to in those areas. Among these the most important are the ones which make available accommodations.
The organization provides the suppliers with all the information needed. It makes sure to impart education on maintenance and endorse their usage of Travelife Sustainability System (one stop online resources for travel businesses.
From the very beginning Thomas Cook has been working with FTO to build up a supply chain management scheme that assures the organization that their suppliers are well equipped with good health, safety and environmental standards which are in accordance with company's policies.
After all this discussion we reach the conclusion that Corporate Social Responsibility is an element that no organization can afford to ignore. All companies strive hard to enhance their corporate social responsibility teams in order to excel in it.
Thomas Cook also realizes the importance of giving something back to the society and the environment. It has taken many steps from its inception and is still working on it. This is a two way thing; on one hand Thomas Cook solves corporate social responsibility issues internally. And on the other hand it depends on collaborations with other companies, fund raisers, charities.
Thomas Cook official website, 2009. Corporate Social Responsibility Report 2009 [online] (Updated December 2009) Available at: http://production.investis.com/tcg/csr/employees/oview/ [Accessed 10 March, 2011].
Business and Human Rights resource centre, 2009. New adventures in ethical travel (Online) (Updated 25 March, 2011) Available at: http://www.business-humanrights.org/Categories/Individualcompanies/N/NeilsonTravelpartofThomasCook (Accessed on 11 March, 2011)