CHARLOTTE, N.C. ( TheStreet) -- In a down economy, the US Airways ( LCC) hub in Charlotte has been an oasis of growth as well as a model of efficiency. For that, many credit a station manager who knows how to get the most from her employees. Terri Pope, Charlotte station manager since 2000 and US Airways vice president for airport customer service, "knows how to get people to buy in," said Cinde Monsam, senior manager for station administration and one of Pope's four direct reports. "What I learned from her and what she does better than anyone else is that she reads the needs of people, not just her employees but also her managers," said Monsam. "She knows when to push for an idea and when to back off, because she listens to people's voices. The loyalty she inspires by doing that is incredible."
Recent growth has pushed US Airways' Charlotte departures to about 640 from about 400 in 2004, making Charlotte/Douglas the country's 11th biggest airport as well as the carrier's most profitable hub. US Airways employs 6,500 in Charlotte: Pope directly oversees 2,000 who work in the airport. Additionally, as the airline's highest ranking Charlotte official, she is the face of US Airways in Charlotte. At a recent meeting, where US Airways Charlotte managers reviewed their 2010 performance, Pope concluded by saying that that a few years ago, she was not so proud of that role. The carrier underwent two bankruptcies and often ranked badly in on-time performance and other operational metrics. "We were looked upon perhaps not as highly as we should have been," Pope said. But now, "When I walk into chamber meetings or corporate headquarters or any meeting, I just glow when someone asks me what I do," she said. And quickly, she credited her staff. "I can't tell you how much I respect you, for what you bring to this wonderful hub of ours."