TAP is right now undergoing a process of transformation that has brought fresh changes to a Company celebrating its 72nd anniversary this year. One of the most recent developments is the nomination of Vilma Varga da Silva as Airport Services Manager.
WHAT’S|up asked the new manager to tell us about her journey, experience and projects for the future of the staff of the Company she now represents.
What was your professional career path before you joined TAP?
I have worked in the aviation industry since I was 18, when I was taken on by VARIG. I became Manager of the Airport of São Paulo and following that Regional Manager of South American Airports – 17 in all. I was sent to the United States as Regional Manager for airports in North America and Asia, in charge of the operational management of the airports of Miami (MIA), New York (all airports), Los Angeles (LAX), Tokyo (NRT), Chūbu Centrair (NGO), Mexico City (MEX) and Caracas (CCS). After that, I took on the position of Business Manager for Virgin Atlantic Airways, handling the transition project from a self-staff company to handling staff. In 2014, I returned to Brazil to be in charge of terminal operations for GRU Airport (São Paulo International Airport), also including the area of Security. And so it was with great delight that I accepted the invitation to come to Portugal to be part of the TAP family.
How did you view TAP before taking on your current role?
I’ve always had great respect for TAP, its solid market presence, its customer loyalty programme and for the dedication of its staff. I consider TAP to be a shining example in today’s corporate culture. I hold TAP in high esteem, because it has proven that it is possible to survive today’s market and industry crises, through efficient management and a focus on people.
What is your personal vision in TAP? What do you hope to do and what are the projects for the future?
I hope to be able to contribute with the experience I have gained throughout my life, adapting it to fit the needs of TAP at this present time, since I believe that everything needs to be tailored to fit, even standard practices. Result-based management and the standardisation of processes require conviction and clarity, because that is the only way to achieve consistency in the quality of services, which will install in our customers the sense that they chose wisely in flying with us. We want to convey the idea that we take care of the flying experience and not just the idea of travelling. My greatest wish is that TAP is recognised as the best airline in the world.