Riders on each line will be asked to grade different aspects of service, including the cleanliness of cars and stations, safety and the responsiveness of employees.
He said he would also ask riders to list the three things that they thought most need to be improved.
“I want to know what passengers want,” Mr. Roberts said yesterday during a wide-ranging interview that touched on topics as diverse as dirty subway cars and his affinity for the poetry of Robert Frost.
“I think too often people sit around in offices like this and say, ‘O.K., I know better than the customer what it is they want and so this is what we’re going to do.’ I want the customer to drive the priorities.”
…He envisions cards that would be handed out to riders as they exit stations, and which they could fill out and mail in at no cost.
The impulse is good, but broken. Roberts realizes that the truth about riders/customers is not in his office but is “out there.” In the subway. With the riders. The real people.
So what does he do? He sits in his office and creates a piece of paper that will be given to those riders. The paper will be sent back into the office where people in the office will look at the paper and make decisions about what to do.
Why not go out of the office and talk to the riders while they are riding? Take that impulse, Roberts, and follow it to the next level!