The digital marketer who effectively runs Qantas Airlines' highly regarded — and very successful — loyalty program has an unusual iPad problem. Flight attendants on Australia's flagship carrier can now get up-to-the-minute data on the airline's most elite and valued frequent flyers displayed on their onboard tablets. The information is useful, helpful and the app was a digital innovation actually sought by Qantas staff. The unhappy catch? Too many flight attendants sounded like they were reading from a script when using this information with these valued customers. They couldn't smoothly incorporate the customized data to authentically connect with their frequent flyers. Instead of making their best customers feel special, the data-driven app too often creeped them out. "We learned that staff needs training to take full advantage of the data we can provide them," said Rob Colwell, Qantas Loyalty's Chief Commercial Officer at a recent analytics workshop hosted by Ernst & Young in Sydney. Colwell observed that the rate of analytics innovation consistently outpaces interpersonal skills. Creating better customer experiences from hard data required a softer touch. Get the full story at Harvard Business Review