AirAsia Thai CEO goes viral after being rude to staff

A lot can go wrong during an online meeting – whether it’s the signal failing or a problem with the microphone. When it’s these little malfunctions, one can usually brush it off. However, when it comes to mistreatment of other members on the call, it’s not so easy to just let it go.

A recently uploaded video shows AirAsia Thailand’s CEO telling a female employee to “shut” her mouth during a meeting, and using profanity when addressing her. After the video came out, it wasn’t long before the company came under fire.

Read on to catch the full story and see what the netizens are saying about the whole thing.

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AirAsia Thai CEO tells a female staff to “shut up” during a meeting

A woman was told to “shut up” by Thai AirAsia CEO, Mr. Tassapon Bijleveld during a townhall meeting between AirAsia and their new partner, Gojek. On 26th July 2021, a video recording of the meeting was uploaded onto Reddit. The clip shows that the woman was trying to ask a question before being interrupted, and the source mentioned that there were over 500 people present in the call.

However, that was not it.

In the video, Mr. Bijleveld continues to interrupt the female employee as she’s trying to ask her question, and even uttered the f-word. His exact words to the woman were, “What’s your f*cking question, come on.”

airasia ceo
Screenshot: @Nicholas_Gomez 

When the female employee tries to explain her point, Mr. Bijleveld then goes on and says, “What’s your question, come on. Don’t talk a lot, too much to talk.” To many netizens, his actions seemed not only rude but also misogynistic.

The call then progresses with Mr. Tony Fernandes – another CEO on the call – also appearing to make “sexist” remarks after comparing Thai women to parcels in his discussion about delivery logistics.

Other netizens have also pointed out how they’re disappointed with the other people in the call – mostly those in senior positions – who smiled awkwardly and let it slide.

Following the release of the video, AirAsia quickly came out to apologise to the public for the inappropriate behaviour. The company assured that the matter – which happened two weeks ago – has already been taken care of, as reported by MARKETING-INTERACTIVE on 26th July 2021.

Netizens’ rage continues

Despite the fact that AirAsia has publicly apologised, it seems that there’s yet an end to what the netizens have to say about the incident.

Some are nudging AirAsia to improve on their leadership, as well as company culture.


Whilst others are commenting on the worst moments in the video, giving us more insight into how the employee must’ve experienced.


This netizen even pointed out how patriarchy prevails, despite all the talk about about gender equality and women empowerment out there.

This tweet seems to refer to another AirAsia CEO, Tony Fernandes stating that Mr. Bijleveld’s remarks were not sexist, as the Thai CEO would’ve said the same thing to a male staff member.
Screenshot: Reddit

To some, AirAsia’s apology wasn’t so convincing.

Screenshot: Reddit

A mistake that would lead to a better future

It goes without saying that no one – whether female or male – should ever be treated this way. However, we hope that this incident would help the company move towards a better and more inclusive future.

After all, everyone’s always learning. So, we’re excited to see what steps the company will take from this.

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Cover image adapted from: @Nicholas_Gomez

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