How the Feds Can Keep Improving Customer Service

Now that they're tackling the airlines, what else can they fix?

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GL Hoffman

Way to go, feds. Thanks for limiting tarmac wait-times to three hours. Can you imagine any American businesses or institutions other than the airlines that would be so tone deaf as to ignore thousands of irate, tarmac-stuck, can’t-use-the-toilet customers? Again, thanks Transportation Department. You fixed it.

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There are some other businesses or institutions that you feds may want jump in and to fix next year:

1. Snow removal. Here in Minnesota, it can snow 12 inches in the middle of the night and by rush hour every main and side street is cleared. Yet, in Chicago and Boston, their snow removal plans appear to be “spring.” Fix this and make life a little easier.

2. Sound editing. Can we do something about the mumbling on TV shows? Luckily, we have TiVo at my house so when Hilda asks me “What did he say?” I just back it up. Not everyone has TiVo.

3. The 15-minute rule. Remember when Andy Warhol said that everyone will be famous for 15 minutes? Let’s make that a law: 15 minutes, no more. And tell Mary Hart.

4. Let’s outlaw any font that is smaller than 8-point. Call it “Grandpa’s Law.” But Grandpa can make his “Get off my grass sign as large as he wants.

5. Create a new occupation: “Direction writing.” Every business must hire one graduate whose written directions pass the kindergarten and old-folks test.

That is my list of fixable things for the feds to work on. Trust me, I have more. But it is Christmas.

Have a merry one.

G. L. Hoffman is a serial entrepreneur and venture investor/operator/incubator/mentor. Two of his companies have traveled the entire success path from the garage to IPO. Currently, he is chairman of JobDig, which operates LinkUp, one of the fastest-growing job search engines. His blog can be found at