2012 Olympics


Customer experience design


Client:  Heathrow

Project Background

As the official ‘host’ airport to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, Heathrow came up against one of it’s greatest ever operational challenges.  Unprecedented passenger numbers and volumes of baggage were expected during and after the Games.

In addition, the complexity of managing the largest ever throughput of passengers with reduced mobility would be significant.


Our role 

Active Thinking were asked to provide leadership for all proving trials, passenger experience integration and training.  We led the work to ensure the 140 organisations at the airport understood the Olympic and Paralympics passenger experience.  A series of ‘Persona Sessions’ allowed all organisations to demonstrate their understanding of the process as passengers were ‘handed-off’ from one organisation to another.  

We conducted proving trials involving 40 organisations in the Olympic Village, Games Terminal and Heathrow’s business-as-usual infrastructure.






Throughout the 2012 games I had the great pleasure to work alongside Charles while we led the operational readiness programme for Heathrow airport. His experience, knowledge and gravitas laid a great foundation to set us up for success in such a complex programme. His leadership style, ability and strength played key criteria to the success of our programme.
— Cathy Masters Head of Olympic and Paralympic Operational Readiness, Heathrow