A Report on the Recent SCAA Conference on New Leadership Solutions for Today’s Biz Av Challenges.
Do you jump out of the sack at o’dark thirty and thank God for another day? Or, like me do you dread rolling out, feeling for and recoiling at the light? Ever since I retired from flying, I almost dread travel since the memories of stumbling around in the dark still haunt me! But once I hit the road, the old feeling of the magic of travel returns and I feel inspired once again to face the unknown with anticipation and a sense of awe at the inevitable mystery that happens on the road.
This journey started off with an early commute to SFO from my home in the North Bay of San Francisco, fearing the worst! Even on a good day SFO isn’t known for its speedy arrivals and departures so with one runway, 28L closed a few days ago for construction repairs, this was not a good omen..
No worries, all went well, my Alaska flight blocked out and took off right on schedule.
I even managed to squeeze in a great movie on the flight down, The SkidRow Marathon, which was perfectly timed to end right at touchdown in SAN. If you get a chance to watch it on Netflix, it’s a real powerhouse: www.skidrowmarathon.com
If you ever wondered what you were put on earth for, this might help clarify your mission! But I digress...
Tim Goulet, the General Manager of Ross Aviation at Thermal, CA and an SCAA mover and shaker, set up a fantastic car rental for me with Go Rentals. If you ever get a chance to rent from them, take it! I was treated like royalty and not because of any nepotism between Tim and the Go Rental management, they’re just that good, friendly and service-oriented. Contact Marshall B. Roberts at: email@example.com
The car that I had, a shiny, brand new Toyota RAV 4 did remind me of my last “modern” rental car experience where I had to call the rental company to learn how to start the thing!
After pushing buttons, and frantically scanning the owner’s manual on my previous rental I finally gave up and called the rental company; they gave me a very complex set of instructions; step on the brake and push the start button!
That’s another reason why I like my ’95 Toyota airport car, I can read the gauges, I twist a knob to turn on the air conditioner and I don’t have to wrestle the car for control when I press the wrong button on the steering wheel.
Also when I open the hood on my old beater, it actually looks like there’s an engine in there!
The conference was held at the Westin Resort and Spa, a very beautiful and well equipped location in the hills of Carlsbad, CA. Once I settled in, I took a look at the SCAA day’s agenda and my first impression when I saw the presenters bios was, “Man, the first speaker isn’t even a pilot! How will the attendees, many of whom were pilots, relate to this guy and his presentation?”
I couldn’t have been more wrong! Both speakers were great and the first one, Mark Howerton, a licensed marriage and family therapist, was a combination of stand-up comedian and a powerful teacher of the basic principles of high level emotional intelligence.
Mark’s presentation was almost like a follow-up to the SkidRow Marathon movie I told you about on my flight to SAN; Mark’s message was kind of a mission statement for life; I began to wonder, “Is this all a message of some sort for me?”
He talked about the “8 Components to a Full and Healthy Life” and their value for a balanced life. They are “inside-out” solutions to modern day stressors. Obviously there’s much more in-depth to each of these but I’ll list them here and if anyone wants more coverage, please feel free to contact me since they have great meaning.
The 8 components are: Professional Success, Financial Intentionality, Emotional Regulation, Physical Health, Relational Fitness, Intellectual Stimulation, Deeper Awareness, and Playful Engagement.
He also talked about the importance of The Leadership Mindset. A powerful component of this talk was his question: “How do I harness my life-defining events to serve others?”
There was much more but suffice it to say, it greatly transcended my initial reaction of “how‘s this guy going to be relatable to the pilot population” since it struck at the core of every human being, aviator or not.
Mark’s contact info is: firstname.lastname@example.org and 949-933-6275.
Craig Picken, a former Naval Aviator representing the NorthStar Group was the second speaker and his message was more aviation “nuts and bolts” than Mark’s but equally as informative and valuable. His focus was on leadership, pilot recruitment and knowing the culture of an organization.
He talked about the pilot shortage and the mentality of new, young pilots entering the industry and the need to make a piloting career and aviation in general, “cooler” and more attractive to the new generation.
You can contact Craig at: craig@NorthStar ESG.com or at 910-509-7129.
The sponsors of the conference were: The Dyer Group, Baldwin Aviation, Universal Weather & Aviation, and Collins Aerospace.
The next event will be the 5th annual SONO (Southern and Northern California) in Palm Springs, November 7th, 2019 (see below)
I encourage anyone who is interested in connecting with other aviation enthusiasts and adding your 2¢ worth to our beloved industry to attend the next SONO event described below. We need your input, your ideas and your help to make the next 10 years the best yet in Business Aviation because it sure isn’t going to happen without our help...
And here’s to the magic of flight, amidst delays surrounding my Alaska return flight, we snuck through from SAN to SFO, with nary a minute lost!
Business Aviation "Fat Cats” to the Rescue!
A lot of people think that Business Aviation private jet owners just swish around to their private islands in the Caribbean and swill champagne and eat caviar all day long. Sure, there's excess involved but when you're playing at that level it's bound to happen.
Having flown my share of "fat cats" when I was a pilot for Netjets, I can say my experience was 99% outstanding, friendly and pleasant. There's always that 1%, no matter what but many of the people I flew had a powerful "pay it forward" mentality complete with big donations to those less fortunate.
When I was a pilot for TWA my first captain rating was on the beautiful, well before it’s time Lockheed L1011. During that ride, I struggled with some of the maneuvers that were required to pass the FAA check ride scheduled for the end of my company training.
As I struggled and finally “got a handle” on one of the maneuvers that was giving me trouble, I think it was the dual engine failure, down to a single engine approach, my instructor’s favorite confidence-building, encouraging words to me were, “OK Botta, let’s get this done, the meter’s running!”
This meant that I was only allotted so many simulator hours before I would be “evaluated” by another company sim instructor to see if they wanted to spend more money on training me or my “meter would run out!”
I suppose this was his way of “motivating” me since he was a gritty old ex-military instructor but needless to say, his meter analogy didn’t do much to relax me and instill confidence.
In similar fashion, but without the intimidation factor, “the meter’s running” for our upcoming New Leadership Solutions for Today's BizAv Challenges this coming Monday, 9/9/19 at the Westin Resort, Carlsbad, CA (CRQ) and we want you there so we can address together our agenda items and also what seems to be a historically unprecedented BizAv accident rate.
Don’t let the meter run out on this one...
See you there...
If you can think back to a time when someone made a difference in your life, gave you encouragement and/or a sense of direction, that person was a mentor. It might have been a relative – for me it was my uncle Pete who took the time to just care about and acknowledge me at a time when my father and I disagreed on just about everything. Besides taking the time to care about who I was, Pete taught me how to ride a horse and drive a car on the open fields and dusty back roads of Fresno, California as a 12 year old kid. I never forgot him and often thought about how he was.
After not seeing Pete for many years, one day I decided to go see him; it meant driving from my home in Sonoma County up to Klamath Falls, Oregon where he was living with his daughter, my cousin. He was a frail 90 year old at the time but we both remembered our time together many years ago and how important it was to both of us. Shortly after my visit, Pete died; but I was so glad that I took the time to see him and thank him for how important he was in that 12 year old kids life.
Mentoring takes all forms, from someone who might have taught you something that you didn’t even know you had an interest in. Or like Pete, it might have been someone who just cared enough about you when maybe you were feeling distant and unappreciated by your parents or life in general.
One of the most important aspects of mentoring is the opportunity for us to recall how important and possibly life-changing a mentor was in our lives and for us to do the same for someone else. And it doesn’t have to be when we were kids either; I’ve been, and continue to be mentored by men and women who continue to love on and impact me and shape my beliefs and behavior.
If you can recall someone who’s shaped and influenced your life then that means there’s an implied responsibility for you to “pay it forward.” I hope that we have the opportunity to do that through the SCAA Mentoring Committee as we grow and develop.
Bert Botta, Writer SCAA
Have you ever been in a situation where you didn’t know what to do and been given the advice to “just be yourself?”
Depending on your mood, that might not be a good idea! Let me explain...
Here’s an example: when I’m driving somewhere and realize that I’m lost, I figure I’ll just keep driving and by some clairvoyant insight, I’ll find my way.
Correct me if I’m wrong here, but the ladies are much smarter than most of us guys in this situation. They’ll stop and ask for directions.
But in other situations when I’m exercising good Emotional Intelligence, I ask for advice, like; “What do you think about this?” Or, “How do I get to the Shoreline Restaurant?” Or whatever.
When I’m in a lousy mood, angry, upset “just being myself” is not the best advice especially since I’m a “typical guy.” And a pilot. But most often people will say, “Relax, just be yourself and you’ll know what to do.” If your EQ is below average, you might reconsider...
What is Emotional Intelligence or EQ and How Does It Impact Safety?
The term was made popular by Daniel Goleman in his 1996 book of the same name.
He defines Emotional Intelligence as the ability to recognize, understand and manage our own emotions as well as recognize, understand and influence the emotions of others.
In practical terms, this means being aware that emotions can drive our behavior and impact people (positively and negatively), and learning how to manage those emotions – both our own and others – especially when we are under pressure. Obviously this has big implications for aviation safety.
We all know people who are in full control of their emotions. They're calm in a crisis, and they make decisions sensitively, however stressful the situation. I think we would all agree that Captain Sully comes to mind here.
Some people can even read the emotions of others. They understand what to say to make people feel better, and they know how to inspire them to take action.
People like this have a high EQ. They have strong relationships, they’re personable and they're likely to be resilient in the face of adversity.
This kind of high EQ is something that most of us aren’t inherently long on. Given our potential EQ shortcomings, it’s important to be aware of this and compensate accordingly. Henry the Nerd, “Relax, just don’t be yourself! What??”
“Just be yourself” wasn’t the best advice for Henry, a young nerd. Henry was 21, still lived at home with his mom, was basically anti-social, still in college, spent a lot of time isolated in his room, playing video games, without a lot of friends. But he did have a few buddies at school.
But he was lonely. So, one day he was surfing the net and came across a dating site. He figured, “What the heck, I might as well give it a shot.”
He saw the profile of a girl who looked like someone he might be able to have a relationship with. Then he began to freak out; what am I going to say to her, how should I act, what should I tell her about myself? Those kinds of questions.
The next day at school he saw his buddies hanging out so he went up and told them about meeting this girl online. Then he asked them the same questions he was asking himself, what am I going to say, how should I act, what should I do with her, etc?
These guys knew Henry pretty well. They knew he was a loner, never been on a date, and spent way too much time alone. So they circled up and started talking amongst themselves.
After a few minutes, one of the guys broke away from the group, came over to Henry, looked at him and said, “Hey Man, we like you and we know you pretty well but we also know that you don’t have much experience with girls.’
So, after thinking this over we decided that when you meet this girl, the best thing you can do is... “Just DON’T be yourself!” (True story...the guy was my former brother-in-law!”)
What’s Your Emotional Intelligence Quotient (EQ)?
Is your IQ in the genius category, above 140 but your EQ (Emotional Intelligence Quotient) is below 100 and descending?
Most of us are intelligent, some highly so, with corresponding high IQ’s (Intelligence Quotients), or else management wouldn’t turn us loose with people’s lives and some very expensive equipment.
For example, one of my new hire pilot buddies at TWA had a photographic memory. He studied very little but maxed the frequent exams that we had in B707 systems ground school. I mistakenly thought I could keep up with his extracurricular activities, going out and partying every night, and maintain a similar grade.
It only took me a couple of weeks to figure out, after partying with him and watching my weekly exam scores plummet, that no way was I going to be able to keep up my after-hours antics with him and continue my flying career.
A Fighter Pilot’s Challenge in Staying Safe While Exercising Good Pilot EQ
One of the pilots I met and interviewed at Oshkosh for an article was Dr. John Marselus. John is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy with over 3,000 hours in the A-10 Thunderbolt and F-15E Strike Eagle along with commanding at several different levels in the USAF.
In his own words, “One thing I found out was that the way I acted when strapping on $50M worth of a sleek hound of death fighter aircraft and how I relate to others in more normal circumstances had to reckoned with. As a fighter pilot, we’re taught to make split second decisions with precision and accuracy since it’s really the most disciplined flying in the world.
I discovered that those fast reactions with short concise communications do not work well in meetings or when listening to people. I still catch myself analyzing someone’s idea before completely listening to them. Your article on emotional IQ is good and perhaps my example might help others avoid learning the hard way.”
The Crucial Connection Between Pilot EQ, Situational Awareness and Stayin’ Alive!!
Situational awareness has been an aviation buzz word for some time. Situational awareness is knowing what’s going on around us, taking it all in, processing it and coming up with a judgment of whether what we see, feel and experience is good or bad, dangerous or safe, threatening, friendly or not, approachable or should I stay away.
Some pilots are better disposed to good situational awareness than others. For example, different personality types have different emotional qualities. There’s an ancient psychological personality typing system called the Enneagram that classifies all personalities into one of 9 categories, or types based on a predominant emotion, i.e. fear, pride, anger, etc.
Personally, I’m predisposed to fear, which makes me suspicious and very vigilant to my surroundings. My usual first response to a situation is something like, “How hard is this going to be?” “Am I smart enough to handle this,” etc.
But this makes me highly attuned to situations and people around me. Consequently, I have good situational awareness. I always felt like I would have made a good cop; able to sniff out possible suspects, etc.
This could be because of some threat that I might have sensed as a kid and, as a result, I’m always on the alert for a potentially threatening situation.
This personality trait has paid off in a flying career free of incidents and inclusive of friendships with people that I trusted and found that I could let my guard down and, yes, “just be myself.”
If your relationship life and your situational awareness are not what they should be, here are 10 tips that will help increase your Pilot EQ. These just might help make you a safer pilot, and help you extract more joy from your flying career as well...
10 Simple Tips to Increasing Your Pilot EQ
These are some very basic tips that I have practiced for years and have found helpful. Now they come naturally, most of the time.
1. “Reach out and touch someone.” (In today’s paranoid culture, be careful how you use this one!) It’s been proven that a simple, often apparently unnoticed touch when you’re talking to someone, “bonds” you in some small but important way.
2. Introduce yourself to others first rather than waiting for them to do so. This gives you the advantage of getting their first name which leads to...
3. REMEMBER THEIR NAME! This takes practice since we’re so focused on our own agenda that their name usually just flies by.
4. USE first names. This is an oft overlooked, yet powerful way to convey to another person that you care about them. As you go about your day, observe how few people use first names in conversation. Also notice how impersonal that feels and how those people who do use someone’s first name seem to get a better response. Try it; you’ll like it!
5. Compliment others when you recognize a job well done or see someone who goes out of their way to help in a situation.
6. Recognizing and complimenting someone’s efforts is a great way to cultivate a “servant’s” heart. Look for ways to help others without a reason to do so. It’s the old, “Practice random kindness and senseless acts of beauty.”
7. Concentrate on asking other people how they’re doing. And then.....wait for their answer and listen with passion! Too often we’re rehearsing our own agenda in our head and could care less about their response. This drastically lowers your EQ!
8. Listen more. It’s amazing how great a conversationalist people think you are when you just listen to them.
9. Let go of having to be perfect. That doesn’t mean not being accurate. Perfectionism is different than accuracy.
10. Focus and expand on the positive in situations, people and events.
This is obviously not a complete list of EQ qualities. Come up with your own. Sometimes the best way to do this is to examine your own life and the areas where you rank low in EQ and just do the opposite! That would be a good place to start.
If any of this makes sense, here’s an EQ quiz that you can take: http://www.ihhp.com/free-eq-quiz. After you take the test if your results don’t meet your expectations get back to me and let’s talk.
The quiz just might help you see if you’re good relationship material, if you’re going to have a fun, productive, happy flying career, if you’re going to rank high on the flight attendants (or your mates) list of favorite pilots or, like Henry...you shouldn’t “just be yourself!”
(Dr. John Marselus is involved with a collegiate aviation flight program that he built for flight and UVS (Unmanned Aerial Systems) students at San Diego Christian College. He has been formally trained as a safety officer, had been selected to serve on a number of safety boards and has a deep perspective on safety. He is the Aviation Department Chair at San Diego Christian College and is also a world-wide recognized expert on UAS operations. http://sdcc.edu/
The SCAA would like to introduce Bert Botta. Bert will be a guest writer for the SCAA blog and facebook posts. Bert is a former TWA and Netjets Captain and Professional Standards Committee chairman, the editor of the Private Jet Pilots monthly newsletter, an Aviation Writer and Copywriter, , author of ‘Fast Lane to Faith: A Jet Jockey’s Search for Significance’, and a former Licensed Professional Counselor. He is a people person, networker par excellence and enjoys bringing people together around their common interests through interviews, sharing their stories, and helping to shape their legacies. You can reach him at mailto:email@example.com or 415-320-9811 We look forward to working with Bert!
Washington, DC, July 26, 2019 – The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) today thanked Dr. Peggy Chabrian for her many contributions to the aviation community, most notably as the founder, president and CEO of Women in Aviation International (WAI). Dr. Chabrian announced her upcoming retirement from the organization earlier this week during the WAI Connect Breakfast at EAA AirVenture 2019 in Oshkosh, WI.
Recognizing the need to support the encouragement and advancement of women in all aviation career fields and interests, Dr. Chabrian founded the first WAI conference in 1990 and drove its incorporation as a non-profit organization in 1994. Among the group’s members are astronauts, business aviation pilots, maintenance technicians, air traffic controllers, journalists, flight attendants, high school and university students, air show performers, airport managers and many others.
“For 30 years, Dr. Chabrian has been a source of inspiration to women in aviation, and a tireless advocate for educational initiatives and other resources to ensure their success and career growth in the industry,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. “NBAA thanks her for her passionate commitment to mentoring and encouraging women to pursue career possibilities within the aviation community, and I know she will continue to inspire lives well into the future.”
NBAA Vice President, Educational Strategy and Workforce Development Jo Damato, CAM, pointed to Dr. Chabrian’s influence on her own career.
“In addition to steering the direction and accomplishments of WAI since its inception, she has touched countless lives throughout the aviation community, and has directly influenced the paths of so many of our industry’s female leaders today,” said Damato. “Dr. Chabrian created a place for ‘women who liked to talk about airplanes’, and I’ve looked to her as a role model since the day I first heard her speak.”
Throughout Dr. Chabrian’s tenure, WAI has awarded more than 948,000 scholarships totaling $12.5 million and established a $1 million endowment fund. The annual International Women in Aviation Conference attracts thousands of attendees each year, and the organization will hold its fifth international Girls in Aviation Day this October.
Dr. Chabrian is a 2,200+ hour commercial/instrument multiengine pilot and flight instructor. She will continue to serve as WAI’s president through April 2020.
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Founded in 1947 and based in Washington, DC, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) is the leading organization for companies that rely on general aviation aircraft to help make their businesses more efficient, productive and successful. The association represents more than 11,000 companies and professionals and provides more than 100 products and services to the business aviation community, including the NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE), the world’s largest civil aviation trade show. Learn more about NBAA at www.nbaa.org.
Members of the media may receive NBAA Press Releases immediately via email. To subscribe to the NBAA Press Release email list, submit the online form.
Washington, DC, July 24, 2019 – National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) President and CEO Ed Bolen today welcomed Senate approval of Steve Dickson’s nomination as administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
“NBAA has had a close working relationship with Steve for many years, and we’re confident he’s the right man for the job,” Bolen said. “Having a permanent Administrator at the FAA is key to ensuring the continued advancement of important work being done on aviation-system modernization, equipment certification, workforce development, safety and other top priorities.”
In conjunction with Dickson’s nomination, Bolen sent a May 14, 2019 letter to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation commending his selection by the White House for FAA Administrator, which was officially announced March 19. “The more than 45,000 FAA employees who work tirelessly to operate a safe and efficient aviation system deserve a leader with the proven management experience that Steve Dickson would bring each day,” the letter states.
Read Bolen’s letter regarding Dickson’s nomination.
Dickson also has leadership experience on Federal Advisory Committees, providing him with a comprehensive understanding of the nation’s air traffic control (ATC) system. He served as chair of a task force that made key recommendations to advance ATC modernization goals while creating a business case for investing in NextGen technologies. This work led to formation of the NextGen Advisory Committee, which Dickson served on until his retirement from Delta.
Dickson is a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy.
The FAA has been overseen by FAA Acting Administrator Dan Elwell since January 2018. Bolen praised Elwell’s leadership and professionalism during the transition period.
Washington, DC, July 23, 2019 – The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) today joined with other aviation groups and unions in voicing support for S.2198, Aviation’s Next Era Act of 2019, also known as the “PLANE Act of 2019”.
The PLANE Act, a bipartisan bill introduced by Sens. James M. Inhofe (R-OK), Chairman of the Armed Services Committee and an avid pilot, and Angus King (I-ME), member of the Armed Services Committee, sets the stage for positive growth and future development for the aviation industry.
“The general aviation industry is poised for a critical phase of innovation and progress – an era of advancement not witnessed in decades,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. “This legislation would help ensure that general aviation, which is an essential contributor to the nation’s economy, can continue its advancement in a safe and efficient manner for the benefit of all citizens.”
Bolen joined several other aviation leaders in signing a July 22, 2019 letter supporting the legislation. View the industry letter in its entirety.
The PLANE Act would ensure fairness for pilots by expanding the Pilot’s Bill of Rights, enhancing protections for the aviation community and guaranteeing timely resolution of investigations. These protections would help current and future pilots meet the ongoing challenges related to pilot hiring.
The bill also encourages investment in general aviation infrastructure including hangars and tarmacs by establishing public-private partnership programs at general aviation airports. The legislation recognizes the important role that airports play in national disaster relief efforts, as well as providing new access to funding for airport development and other projects.
The PLANE Act also seeks to provide the fair distribution of aviation federal fuel tax receipts, a portion of which are currently diverted to the Highway Trust Fund. With this change, the PLANE Act would ensure aviation-generated user fees are fully distributed to the Airport and Airway Trust Fund to support aviation-related projects.
Bolen further stated that “we thank Sens. Inhofe and King for their leadership on this important aviation legislation and look forward to working with them–and our aviation industry colleagues–to obtain Senate passage of this important aviation legislation.”
When your day-to-day responsibilities touch on every aspect of business aviation, it’s critical to have a broad perspective of the industry.
Certified Aviation Manager (CAM) Scott Ashton knows firsthand about the wide range of decisions aviation executives must make. For Ashton, president and CEO of Corporate Service Supply and Manufacturing, earning his CAM certification has proved an asset in confronting the diverse array of challenges arriving at his desk each day.
“The CAM exam forces you take a comprehensive look at business aviation in its totality,” said Ashton. “As you evolve as a leader, having more familiarity with areas sometimes outside of your comfort zone is extremely valuable.”
A 25-year aviation veteran whose robust resume includes leadership experience in leasing, aircraft management and air charter services, Ashton knows the benefits of seeing a broad cross section of the industry. He points to the rigor and depth of the CAM curriculum as a key value point for industry leaders seeking to enhance their expertise.
“As you move up in your career, you need a broader perspective in terms of the market, management, personnel, dealing with state and regulatory agencies,” he said. “CAM helps prepare you to, if not always be an expert, know enough to ask the right questions of experts in those areas, which as a leader is extremely important.”
Ashton has also found significant value in the reputation benefits CAM certification can offer within the business aviation world.
“Part of the value of any accreditation is the credibility it gives you with the people whom you do business with,” he noted. “The CAM credential instantly signals that you have credibility as a leader in the industry.”
Learn more about the Certified Aviation Manager program.
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