Northwest Airlines

  www.nwa.com
  www.nwa.com
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Northwest Airlines Reviews

Updated August 31, 2014
Updated August 31, 2014
68 Reviews
3.9
68 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Northwest Airlines President and CEO Ed Bastian
Ed Bastian
16 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Good benefits - health insurance, vacation pay, sick pay, holidays and travel benefits (in 14 reviews)

  • Friendly and helpful colleagues, reasonable flight benefits and amazing learning opportunities (in 5 reviews)


Cons
  • Low pay, hard to advance quickly (in 4 reviews)

  • All employees took major pay cuts recently due to the very difficult business climate our industry is currently experiencing (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Northwest Airlines needs to listen to it's employees or it won't be around for long.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Flight Attendant
    Current Employee - Flight Attendant

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    Good health benefits. Good time off. Good training. We are merging with Delta Airlines soon and will become the largest domestic carrier in the US and one of the largest international carriers. If you like to travel, as an employee you will have access to pass benefits to most areas of the world. In an extremely difficult business climate for small or flegling airlines, the new Delta will most probably survive. We have been receiving profit sharing and incentive bonuses frequently over the past year. For example, you might receive extra pay for just not calling in sick over the summer.

    Cons

    Currently under alot of pay cuts. All employees took major pay cuts recently due to the very difficult business climate our industry is currently experiencing. Even though we have a contract and a union, the company basically forced us to take very hefty pay cuts in order to save the airline from bankruptcy. The senior management took pay cuts too, but most employees believe that the very top management did not take enough of a pay cut. This is the typical resentment against today's ceo's. We are told that we have to pay them millions in order to get the best leaders.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It's time for you to take a bigger paycut. Most of all I would say that it's time for you to listen to the rank and file employees re what they need to do a good job. Most of our employees are doing the work of three people. You can't operate indefinitely like that. They call meetings and pretend to listen to your concerns. The next day they tell you that your chance to complain is over and you need to do what they tell you or here's the door.

    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Don't work for Northwest Airlines!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Flight Attendant  in  Honolulu, HI
    Current Employee - Flight Attendant in Honolulu, HI

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    travel benefits, great people to work with, exciting places to visit,

    Cons

    low pay, high stress, away from home and family two weeks a month, difficulties dealing with upset passengers, dehydration, lack of sleep,

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pay your employees!!!!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Airlines have become a commodity

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Manager  in  Minneapolis, MN
    Former Employee - Manager in Minneapolis, MN

    I worked at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    Flight benefits, allows for great opportunity to see the world.

    Cons

    Low pay, so when you do get a chance to travel you can rack up credit card debt... Also the industry as a whole has taken a beating in the last few years and they have not figured out how to change there business model to make money.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Learn that the people are what make the airline of choice for passengers not the bottom line. It is easy to point fingers at all the external factors that have caused the problems. It is time to come up with a revolutionary new business model or become extinct

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Working here can be addicting if you like world domination games.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Analyst, Marketing  in  Eagan, MN
    Current Employee - Senior Analyst, Marketing in Eagan, MN

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    The corporate culture is pretty responsive and collaborative. Good ideas are taken seriously and rewarded.
    Travel Benefits are great. Compared to many other companies, decisions are usually made for the right reasons. If you are talented or work hard, advancement is a realistic expectation. With locations worldwide, working in a new place is possible.

    Cons

    Your fortune rises and falls with the cyclical nature of the industry, which is very much tied to uncontrollable forces like the price of oil or the state of the economy. There is still an "us"/"them" attitude between management and labor (on both sides). Minneapolis is very cold in the winter.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Create an atmosphere where "yes men" are not welcomed. Remember that bad news is good news because hearing it is the only way to fix problems. You'll get the clearest picture from front line employees who sense you're on their side.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    A great company in a troubled industry

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Aircraft Engineer  in  Minneota, MN
    Current Employee - Aircraft Engineer in Minneota, MN

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    An empowering management team that gives you the freedom you want, but holds you accountable. Performance and creativity is rewarded.

    Cons

    The aviation industry in general is challenged. Job security and pay are concerns.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Complete the merger with Delta.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Opportunities abound but must have a thick skin to work in the airline industry.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Finance Manager  in  Eagan, MN
    Current Employee - Finance Manager in Eagan, MN

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    The travel benefits are good but are getting tougher to utilize with increased loads. There are a lot of opportunities because the company is so lean. The merger will open up even more opportunities for those already in the company.

    Cons

    You have to be able to deal with the ups and downs of the industry. All the bad news since 9/11 can be depressing if you focus on it too much.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be more open with the employees concerning the merger and company information in general. The employees make NWA go and they need to be valued.

    Recommends
    Disapproves of CEO
  8.  

    It's not as bad as some people want you to think.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Analyst, Marketing  in  Eagan, MN
    Current Employee - Analyst, Marketing in Eagan, MN

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    The flight benefits are fantastic. Unlimited space-available travel for free (or next to nothing) on Northwest and Delta Air Lines' global network.

    Cons

    Very difficult to benchmark your success versus other peers. Not much feedback from management.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Success can be made by having a less-conservative work environment. Look at Southwest - they can work hard *and* have fun doing it.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Roller coaster airline career dependant on timing

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Captain A320  in  Memphis, TN
    Current Employee - Captain A320 in Memphis, TN

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    Working a flight schedule allows for irregular work schedule. The good part includes avoiding daily commutes. The bad part might include missing certain family events.

    Cons

    Sector business volatility is disruptive to many families

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take care of your people

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Death of a proud airline in the name of stockholders' dividends....

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Flight Attendant  in  Detroit, MI
    Current Employee - Flight Attendant in Detroit, MI

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    This industry affords employees the opportunity to travel and learn about new environments. I have worked here 23 years, and I've seen the world. I know Paris like the back of my hand, and my entire goal as a young person was to see Paris. I have been able to know Paris intimately thanks to Northwest Airlines. Not many careers can give a person a child's dream. It's been a pleasure finding different cultures, foods, and ways of life; I would not give up my memories for anything, and for anyone who is adventurous in nature, this is the place to be.

    Cons

    The hours can be completely insane, and unfortunately the climate is extremely volatile. The only positions that I would recommend in the environment would be to try to get a mid level management position. I'm a flight attendant, and it has turned into one of the worst jobs in the world. It's been taken from an elite status to nothing more than a lackey who is yelled at incessantly by strangers for any myriad of reasons. Management can buffer themselves from such atrocities and do whatever work their ivy league towers have bred them to do in today's workforce.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start looking at business as not just business. This mantra that allows senior management to treat human beings as expendable parts of doing business is morally wrong and we've turned a blind eye to it for the last 20 years in the name of making money for the stockholder. Hold yourselves accountable to the world and the the ethics you were most certainly taught as a young person. When you look in a mirror, and if you reach down to the breadths of you soul, do you like what you see? Be honest--new concept.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    Great travel benefits, if you won't use them, look for different employment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Sales Representative  in  Bloomington, MN
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Bloomington, MN

    I have been working at Northwest Airlines

    Pros

    Travel benefits, travel benefits, travel benefits!

    Cons

    I do not feel valued as an employee, feel easily replaced. Leadership is lacking motivation skills and many direct managers micromanage. My department does not feel trusted and everything is checked and rechecked by our direct manager. It is a very negative environment, especially when speaking with the union groups. Benefits compensation are not very competitive with other companies and no tuition reimbursment is offered.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to the typical employee and follow other companys' leads on valuing the employee. It's getting better, but still can improve!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

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