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effective work. One-third of your men should be company section members and at least a two-page letter should go into their homes twice a month. After that, try to make the personnel of the company a real, sincere, sympathetic part of the community. Work for the community through its civic organizations like the Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club. That doesn't mean for officers or employees of the company to join these various organizations and pay their dues and never show up except when they want something; such a course fools only you and your company. It means to take an active part showing their desire to produce a greater and better community and stand ready to back up that desire in any practical way that you can. If you belong to the Rotary Club, do not attend the weekly dinner just often enough to retain your membership, but actually enter into the life of Rotary and adopt its principles all the way down the line. Make Rotarians of your employees. It is not difficult. Anyone in your employ, even if he labors with his hands for wage, can understand the wisdom of the Golden Rule.

If you happen to be a member of the Chamber of Commerce and it comes around to a membership drive, go out and work for the Chamber just as any other business man interested in the welfare of the community will do. Again, if there is a City Planning Commission in your town and you are called on, go to it and do all you can toward helping the cause along. It is worth something to know in advance what problems the company will eventually be called on to solve.

So I could go along at great length on this subject of making yourself and organization a part of the community in which you serve with transportation. Why should anyone not accept a task for making their community higher or better ; that is just plain Americanism. Try it, and you will find the proverbial “ Skeleton in the closet,” the complaint file, may be substituted for letters of commendation. In conclusion, if you do pursue this policy and sometime along comes a day that you do want to put the improvement over or get some consideration from the people, that you won't have to beg and not get it, that consideration if worthy will be gladly given, That

was my experience when we decided to operate one-man cars, sell the company's stock, distribute metal tokens and introduce other improvements for the good of the community, and I believe it will be verified by anyone else that works earnestly along the same lines.

CHAIRMAN BRUSH :- Britton I. Budd, President of the Chicago Elevated Railway: Mr. Budd is a comparatively

: young man who worked his way up from a position in the storeroom of one of the subsidiary lines in Chicago to be President of that great transportation system. His diplomatic handling of the problems which have confronted him have won him the confidence of such men as Samuel Insull. In addition to keeping a watchful eye over the complicated operations of the elevated lines in Chicago, he is President of the Chicago, North Shore and Milwaukee Electric Railway and of the Chicago Interurban Traction Company. The North Shore Route, as it is called, is a very highly developed trolley fine, connecting Chcago and Milwaukee, holding and handling business in competition with two of the best steam roads in the country, by virtue of the good service given. Many of the interesting practices originating on this road have been adopted by other practical operators throughout the country. Mr. Budd was one of the original men to take an active and continued interest in Safety Work and his company is one of the shining lights in the industry in this respect, as well as in the matter of merchandising transportation. What is more, he not only merchandises transportation, but furnishes good transportation to merchandise. He is First Vice-President of the American Electric Railway Association and one of the earnest and prominent citizens of Chicago. There is operated, under his direction, about 200 miles of elevated railway and about 220 miles of surface track, mostly interurban. These lines operate all together 1,954 passenger cars, besides a goodly number of locomotives and freight cars.



BY BRITTON I. Budd, President,

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS The importance of the company publication, as a medium through which a company, its customers and its employes, can be brought closer together in the interest of better service, is becoming more and more appreciated by electric railway companies. Much remains to be done in this field, however, for it is a subject which, in my opinion, deserves more serious consideration on the part of executives than it has received in the past.

No public utility company can give the best service of which it is capable without the co-operation of its customers and of its employes. This co-operation necessarily is three-sided and a company publication, so-called, can be used to cement and hold together the three sides of the triangle.

There are two kinds of periodicals which go under the name of " pany publications,” each having separate and distinct functions, yet closely connected. The first is issued for general circulation, intended primarily for the customers of a company and secondarily for the employes. It carries a message from the company as one factor in the equation to the other two factors, with the result that all three are drawn closer together and brought to a better mutual understanding.

The second kind of company publication is intended for employes only, its function being to inform and interest them in affairs that are closely related to themselves and the company for which they work. In this paper I shall treat the two kinds of publications separately, pointing out some of the things which may be accomplished by each in its own field, although I realize that there is some over-lapping in their respective functions.

The company publication which goes to customers as well as employes may be used to advantage in a variety of ways. It may be used both as a business and as a goodwill getter, by setting forth the advantages of the service which the company has to sell. It can be used to establish and maintain a spirit of goodwill between the customers and the employes and promote courtesy and safety. It offers the passenger a medium through which he can express appreciation of an act of courtesy shown him by an employe.

That passengers will take advantage of such opportunity to express appreciation, has been amply demonstrated in my own experience. When we first began to issue a little publication of this kind on the Chicago elevated lines some six years ago, the first issue contained no commendations of employes. At the present time hardly a day passes without one or more letters being received from grateful passengers commending some employe for recovering a lost package, for finding a seat for a standing passenger, for being attentive to a woman with a baby in arms, for calling stations distinctly, for lending a woman carefare or for one or other of the hundreds of little things which an employe can do to please and accommodate customers. Each issue of this publication now carries regularly from twenty to forty such commendations, the particular employe being identified by name and badge number.

That may appear a trifling matter, but the effects are far-reaching and much more important than appears at first glance. Such commendations stimulate employes with a desire to please. They encourage them to do better work. They bring them into closer relationship with their customers and at the same time create a friendly feeling on the part of the passenger toward the company.

If you consider for a moment how reluctant most of us are to write letters which we are not required to write, you will realize that a passenger who takes the trouble to write a long letter commending some employe must feel rather friendly toward the company. It is a word from a pleased customer, which is the most valuable form of advertising a company can get and is a valuable asset in public relations.

But that is only one of the ways in which such a publication is valuable. On every large property there are always details of operation which the average passenger does not understand and which frequently create irritation and cause complaint. The passenger wishes to know why certain things are done the way they are and why they are not done in the way he thinks they ought to be. He wishes to know why certain trains pass certain stations some days and not on others and many other things similar in character.

When such inquiries are received care is taken to explain them fully in the next issue. We have found by experience that some of these operating details are read with more interest than any other items in the publication. Passengers after reading some explanation of that kind will write letters saying they had often wondered what the reason was, but now it was perfeotly clear to them and they were satisfied. Frequently they will end such letters by asking for an explanation of some other detail in a future issue.

Now the effect of all that is that it gets the customer interested in the company and the character of the service it gives. His interest is of a friendly character. He looks forward to the appearance of the next issue to see the explanation of the detail about which he asked. If you can get your customers interested in your company you get their goodwill at the same time.

There are many other ways in which a publication of this kind can be made helpful in maintaining good public relations. In recent years many changes in rates of fare have come about and the company publication is a good medium through which to explain the necessity for the changes. This can be done by a plain statement of the facts, avoiding all appearance of complaining or making pleas of poverty. Matter written on this subject should point out the high quality of the service being given and the advantage to the public in having it maintained, rather than to show that a company is not making any money.

The company publication can be used to inform its customers of improvements being made or contemplated. If a new station is being built, tell your customers about it. If new rails are being laid, tell about it, giving briefly in some detail the benefit the public will derive from the improvement and incidentally the cost to the company. If a new class of service is to be installed explain how it will benefit passengers.

Such items are "news" and are read with interest. The benefit to the company in printing such items is that the customers talk about it and get the impression that the company is constantly doing something in the way of improving the service. Care should be used in the preparation of such items to avoid all semblance of propaganda. Treat them solely for their news value and let the customers draw their own inferences.

The second kind of publication to which I have referred, the one which is intended mainly for the employes, must be a little different in character from the one intended for public consumption. There are differences of opinion as to the nature of the material to be used and the manner in which it should be presented.

In the case of the Chicago elevated lines we have the two kinds, and as both are mailed to the home addresses of employes each month, naturally we seek to avoid duplication of news matter. None of the same material is used in both publications, except the commendations of employes. The reason for the exception is that in the employes' magazine we use commendations coming from superintendents and foremen as well as those coming from passengers, while in the other only letters coming from the public are used.

While, as I have said, there are differences of opinion about the kind of material that should be used in employes' magazines, my own opinion is that first of all such publications should be educational and informative in character. They should have a definite purpose in view and that purpose should be to acquaint the employes with the business of the company by which they are employed.

In every large corporation the great majority of the employes are totally ignorant of the financial and business side of the enterprise. I do not believe that this ignorance on the part of the employes is due to lack of interest in the business of the company, but rather to lack of information. They do not know because the company has not given them an opportunity to learn. The main purpose of the employes' magazine, therefore, should be to supply such information in a readable way which can easily be understood.


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