I recently was at the airport getting ready to check-in. I had two options: 1) go up to the counter and deal with a person or 2) use the self check-in computer. I had enough time that both were viable options (the line wasn't long) but in the end I chose to check myself in.
Once I got to the gate I thought about my decision and how my decision to use technology could replace the worker. I then thought about the self-checkout lines at the grocery stores and how much I dislike them. I generally make it a point to use the cashier at the store. Why? Because I like the customer service - Saying hello, bagging my purchase, etc.
I found the inconsistency interesting, but then I realized something: By using the self check-in option I left the airline check-in clerk free to focus on customer service.
I remember the day when we didn't have these fancy computers and had to deal with people. And you know what? It stunk! The lines were long, making the customers grumpy. The employees were grumpy because they deal with nothing but grumpy customers. Why were we such gluttons for punishment?
Now we can use technology and not stand in the line. The wait times are consequently shorter and the people less grumpy. The employees really should take advantage of the customer's preference and wow them with customer service. Technology may take jobs away from people but the employees and customers can have a better experience. I know I did!