Two heiress sisters. Two different controversies. One swift punishment: they’re both out of the family business. For now at least…
We all remember the “nut rage” incident onboard a Korean Air flight from New York to Seoul in 2014. Cho Hyun-ah became livid when her salted nuts were served in a bag rather than ramekin and responded by forcing two FAs to beg on their knees for forgiveness, then ordered the plane be returned to the gate to remove one of them. She was sentenced to one year in prison for that tantrum (under the auspices of obstructing aviation safety), but never served time.
Eventually she returned to the family business, with an appointment to help run the hotel division of her father’s empire.
Meanwhile, Cho’s sister Hyun-min remained at Korean Air and recently got into trouble herself. She works on the marketing side and allegedly hurled water in the face of an advertising agent at a meeting. She denies it, but an investigation has commenced.
Last week, reports emerged that the Cho family is under investigation for smuggling luxury goods into Korea.
Facing growing public outcry Cho Yang-ho, the Chair of Korean Air and father of the two Cho sisters, has removed them from his positions of influence in his company.
In what must have been an extremely humiliating act, Mr. Cho publicly apologized for the conduct of his two daughters:
As chairman of Korean Air, as well as a father, I feel terrible about the immature actions of my daughters. Everything is my fault and my wrongdoing. I apologise to the people.
That’s no half apology…
The cynic in me says these two spoiled princesses will find a way back into the company and in the meantime will continue to lead a charmed life using daddy’s money. And truth be told, I don’t think anyone should go to jail for the temper tantrums displayed by both Cho daughters. But let us all remember that every person deserves dignity, no matter how big, no matter how small. Treat those around with you respect this day. It’s the right thing to do.