Earlier this year, in the span of just a couple weeks, the business world lost two great customer experience strategists.

Executive Summary

Jack Bogle, founder of Vanguard Investments, and Herb Kelleher, co-founder of Southwest Airlines, set their companies on a path to success through the strategies they crafted and the leadership behaviors they embraced. The two passed away recently. Here, Jon Picoult of Watermark Consulting offers an appreciation of their lives and legacies and the lessons they present for leaders in all industries.

Jack Bogle was the founder of Vanguard Investments, which is now the second-largest asset manager in the world. He popularized the concept of index investing, advocating for low-cost portfolios that seek to mirror the performance of the broader market rather than outperform it via higher-cost, “actively managed” portfolios.

Herb Kelleher was the co-founder of Southwest Airlines, which began as a small airline serving just three Texas cities but eventually grew into the largest domestic air carrier in the United States. With a formula of affordable fares and a distinctive service experience, Kelleher’s airline effectively “democratized” the skies, bringing air travel to the masses in a way that had never been done before.

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