Our inaugural SimpliFlying Hero for the month of May 2010 is…. (drumroll)….Aurelie Valtat from Eurocontrol!

I’m sure a lot of you must be familiar with Aurelie’s work after watching her interview on SimpliFlying. Aurelie is the online communications leader at Eurocontrol, an inter-governmental organization which works to maintain air traffic safety on a national level. She is being recognized as a Simpliflying Hero for her outstanding work in the face of Iceland’s volcanic eruption on April 14, 2010. Aurelie single-handedly diffused the information Eurocontrol had on the crisis to its social media outlets of Facebook and Twitter and brought relief to tens of thousands of stranded passengers.



Claim to Fame

Aurelie’s work in managing the eruption crisis began before the smoke had even risen; Eurocontrol was on alert of the impending issue the day prior to its destruction. Staying ahead of the game gave Eurocontrol an opportunity to begin its research and prepare formal statements for the airlines which it works to alert.

While the organization’s primary function is to provide information to the airlines whom such disasters effect, Aurelie and Eurocontrol made a decision to also issue public statements via Twitter and Facebook as they arose. Such a decision is what makes unique Aurelie’s management skills in this crisis; addressing public need helps to defer the eventual chaos among airlines and their customers. Moreover, Aurelie constantly updated the information on Twitter and Facebook by herself, while her colleague was stranded in Barcelona.

The numbers speak for themselves

With such outstanding public service, Aurelie informed passengers stranded by the national disaster and brought massive traffic to Eurocontrol’s Twitter page. The company began April 14th with a modest 350 followers, a number which has grown to nearly 7300 now. This execution provided a wi-fi’d haven for passengers who accessed Eurocontrol’s Facebook and Twitter pages from airports across Europe.

What began as an old dog learning new tricks in the tech-era had unfolded into exceptional crisis management merely five months after its setup. Being a Simpliflying Hero means taking initiative as Aurelie did: using the social media tools of an organization to relay information quickly and effectively achieving business objectives.

Congratulations Aurelie Valtat for your exceptional work in the social media world and service to the many customers of Europe’s airlines, you are a Simpliflying Hero!

Know someone who’s worthy of being a SimpliFlying Hero?

Simpliflying Heroes are individuals recognized for outstanding social media use in the aerospace world. Do you know of somebody who uses social media effectively in their organization to achieve specific business results? Or do you think you fit the bill?

Then go ahead and fill up the SimpliFlying Heroes nomination form. By filling out the nomination form, you bring them a step closer to being recognized by Simpliflying for their efforts.

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