What is your greatest piece of advice

So, the problem with being a captain is that you're in an echo chamber of your own design. FO's aren't going to really rail against you unless you're going to do something that will kill or violate them, so you get used to having guys say, "sure boss, whatever you think is best" even if the captain is a raging douchecanoe.

We can all SAY that we expect FO's to speak up when the captain is behaving this way, but we also know it's a lie, because as soon as FO's speak up we start raining against right seat captains, and how these FO's are so stupid and what do they know.

They know a lot, if we give them an environment where they feel comfortable being open and honest. But that tone is set in the first 30 seconds you meet them.
Zero experience in a cockpit. But that's not how I've always run a shift. Or would like to either.

At top of shift as the lead tech, I always made my expectations known. By first asking if anyone had any questions. Letting them know that everyone has their own communications style with the patients. Use what you like as long as it's safe and within' hospital SOP. Because the goal was always to go home at the end of the shift. Also asking them what their expectations were for themselves and also of me. Made sure to let others know that their opinions/voices are valued/important. But also that I might not always see/catch things that they might. If they did see something that I didn't. I always instructed them speak up. If you're not comfortable with a decision that I made/make. Speak up tell me why you don't like it, what you might do instead. Or let's again come up with a better decision together. Let's talk about it and make a decision. If I overruled your opinion, let's talk about it later after things calmed down and see how the situation could have been handled better/differently. In most cases, both sides often saw different things for the same situations.

Like in a cockpit a whole shift is a team and going to get written up and investigated together, by any one of the following. The health board. State board/licensing, regulatory and also management. The nurses though faced having their licensure censured, suspended or revoked. Techs were just fired. So, they (nurses) especially depended on us the eyes/ears of the unit the techs, especially the lead tech to protect the patients and also their license.

A cockpit might be different, but personally, I don't like ruling from an echo chamber or being ran from an echochamber. As an FO, I'd at least like my opinions/experience to taken into account/taken seriously. Also, I understand that it isn't a democracy and that the captain has the final say. But I would still as a member of the team appreciate being consulted on important decisions. Instead of a POS control freak always barking orders my direction. That would immediately make me shut down/get passive-aggressive. Or get defensive or go on the attack.

Also, I think tone/inflection and body language greatly help better situations as well. Working where I have I consider myself to be a great communicator and people person, also I'm pretty patient. Especially when the clientele were bipolar/manic severe. And already consider you to be bad because they think that you're the enemy and their jailers. Or both. Or a psychopath is flipping tables or in your face yelling at the top of their lungs, posturing and making threats. And you're just there kinda standing calmly. Speaking respectfully. Saying when you're done with your sophomoric tantrum when you've got all that out of your system. I'll be here ready to talk. Okay? Or they're schizophrenic and think that they're Thor from The Avengers.

Being able to communicate effectively as a team is important. I'd think asking leading questions in a cool, calm controlled manner, to the Captain, if he isn't a POS. Instead of being that right seat captain is also important. Also, we had several sayings. Like: "Sometimes being right, is still wrong. Especially when being right got you punched in the face. Or the Q.T.I.P rule. Quit taking it personal(ly). Which of course is always the hardest thing to do.
 

Cherokee_Cruiser

Well-Known Member
Zero experience in a cockpit. But that's not how I've always run a shift. Or would like to either.

At top of shift as the lead tech, I always made my expectations known. By first asking if anyone had any questions. Letting them know that everyone has their own communications style with the patients. Use what you like as long as it's safe and within' hospital SOP. Because the goal was always to go home at the end of the shift. Also asking them what their expectations were for themselves and also of me. Made sure to let others know that their opinions/voices are valued/important. But also that I might not always see/catch things that they might. If they did see something that I didn't. I always instructed them speak up. If you're not comfortable with a decision that I made/make. Speak up tell me why you don't like it, what you might do instead. Or let's again come up with a better decision together. Let's talk about it and make a decision. If I overruled your opinion, let's talk about it later after things calmed down and see how the situation could have been handled better/differently. In most cases, both sides often saw different things for the same situations.

Like in a cockpit a whole shift is a team and going to get written up and investigated together, by any one of the following. The health board. State board/licensing, regulatory and also management. The nurses though faced having their licensure censured, suspended or revoked. Techs were just fired. So, they (nurses) especially depended on us the eyes/ears of the unit the techs, especially the lead tech to protect the patients and also their license.

A cockpit might be different, but personally, I don't like ruling from an echo chamber or being ran from an echochamber. As an FO, I'd at least like my opinions/experience to taken into account/taken seriously. Also, I understand that it isn't a democracy and that the captain has the final say. But I would still as a member of the team appreciate being consulted on important decisions. Instead of a POS control freak always barking orders my direction. That would immediately make me shut down/get passive-aggressive. Or get defensive or go on the attack.

Also, I think tone/inflection and body language greatly help better situations as well. Working where I have I consider myself to be a great communicator and people person, also I'm pretty patient. Especially when the clientele were bipolar/manic severe. And already consider you to be bad because they think that you're the enemy and their jailers. Or both. Or a psychopath is flipping tables or in your face yelling at the top of their lungs, posturing and making threats. And you're just there kinda standing calmly. Speaking respectfully. Saying when you're done with your sophomoric tantrum when you've got all that out of your system. I'll be here ready to talk. Okay? Or they're schizophrenic and think that they're Thor from The Avengers.

Being able to communicate effectively as a team is important. I'd think asking leading questions in a cool, calm controlled manner, to the Captain, if he isn't a POS. Instead of being that right seat captain is also important. Also, we had several sayings. Like: "Sometimes being right, is still wrong. Especially when being right got you punched in the face. Or the Q.T.I.P rule. Quit taking it personal(ly). Which of course is always the hardest thing to do.

The job's not hard, you'll see once you start at the regional soon. As a FO just don't be a right seat CA. Stuff like adding 1,000 lbs fuel without first running it by the CA. Operational stuff in which you just do it, and then inform the CA after the fact. Things like that would probably annoy the avg CA. This job in general is not hard - people make it hard. There's always the small X % who are d*cks but that's pretty much any industry.
 

jtrain609

I'm a carnal, organic anagram.
The job's not hard, you'll see once you start at the regional soon. As a FO just don't be a right seat CA. Stuff like adding 1,000 lbs fuel without first running it by the CA. Operational stuff in which you just do it, and then inform the CA after the fact. Things like that would probably annoy the avg CA. This job in general is not hard - people make it hard. There's always the small X % who are d*cks but that's pretty much any industry.
What would you rather have an FO do? Sit on their hands and wait for you, The Master And Commander, to come in and do everything?

I'm with you on adding fuel, but otherwise, let guys do their jobs.

Further, most the FO's at your airline will have more time as a captain than you do. Don't forget that.
 

jtrain609

I'm a carnal, organic anagram.
At the same time, when the CA needs help, is on the phone with dispatch/MX, etc, anything the FO can do to help me is greatly appreciated. Load the box? Terrific. Handle some problem the FAs are having? You're my favorite FO.
Further, it's in every captains job description to mentor FO's so they can successfully upgrade to captain. You can't figure out how to make decisions until you actually get out there and make decisions.

With a leash? Sure, without a doubt. But again, in every FOM it'll say that when the captain is not present, command falls to the FO.
 

Cherokee_Cruiser

Well-Known Member
What would you rather have an FO do? Sit on their hands and wait for you, The Master And Commander, to come in and do everything?

I'm with you on adding fuel, but otherwise, let guys do their jobs.

Further, most the FO's at your airline will have more time as a captain than you do. Don't forget that.
I respect the FOs and their previous time. I realize it's a new gig for me. Like you said by all means do your job, if I'm not there, you know what to do, etc.
I only meant the operational stuff, maybe I'm using the wrong phrase? I meant the guys who do operational stuff that is either a CA call or should have been run by the CA first. Like another example: first leg we land in SFO on 28R and now holding short 28L. "Number 2 comin off!" he said. That's a CA call. But even that aside, I'd rather leave it running until we cross the active runway and then shut one down. Especially in SFO many times you get the "without delay, cross 28L" so I'd rather have both motors going. I just said nicely lets just wait til they clear us to cross this runway then we can do it. That went fine, we crossed, I asked for it shut and then S/E taxi in. But I've heard there's a FO here with a CA once who took offense at not being able to shut one down. And he got real quiet for the remaining 10 minutes of that trip. That's the kinda stuff I meant. Of course by all means if we're sitting somewhere in a pad or some other situation and I'm just forgetting to shut it down, then mention it. But just reaching it and shutting it yourself, and then announcing to the CA? That's what I meant about operational decision not run by the CA first.
 

Derg

Cap, Roci
Staff member
Having my copilot, damn I’m sorry, having the co-captain/first officer contact dispatch to add 1000 lbs of fuel would be strange at my shop. Hell, I wouldn’t even do that myself without talking about it with the cop... err co-captain/first officer first
 

Jordan93

Well-Known Member
I think it is possible to be a little over proactive. While I definitely appreciate FOs that lend a hand, sometimes situations are complex and I just need a few seconds to collect my thoughts and don’t want FOs doing anything at that specific point in time.
 

bimmerphile

SuperCritical™ Member
I respect the FOs and their previous time. I realize it's a new gig for me. Like you said by all means do your job, if I'm not there, you know what to do, etc.
I only meant the operational stuff, maybe I'm using the wrong phrase? I meant the guys who do operational stuff that is either a CA call or should have been run by the CA first. Like another example: first leg we land in SFO on 28R and now holding short 28L. "Number 2 comin off!" he said. That's a CA call. But even that aside, I'd rather leave it running until we cross the active runway and then shut one down. Especially in SFO many times you get the "without delay, cross 28L" so I'd rather have both motors going. I just said nicely lets just wait til they clear us to cross this runway then we can do it. That went fine, we crossed, I asked for it shut and then S/E taxi in. But I've heard there's a FO here with a CA once who took offense at not being able to shut one down. And he got real quiet for the remaining 10 minutes of that trip. That's the kinda stuff I meant. Of course by all means if we're sitting somewhere in a pad or some other situation and I'm just forgetting to shut it down, then mention it. But just reaching it and shutting it yourself, and then announcing to the CA? That's what I meant about operational decision not run by the CA first.
My favorite is when I ask to shut down number 2 and they shut down 1.

What would you rather have an FO do? Sit on their hands and wait for you, The Master And Commander, to come in and do everything?

I'm with you on adding fuel, but otherwise, let guys do their jobs.

Further, most the FO's at your airline will have more time as a captain than you do. Don't forget that.
I'd prefer everyone accomplish their own duties in the proper sequence at the proper time before taking up additional responsibilities of "helping out." It doesn't help me that you plugged the weights into the box when you haven't done your acceptance/setup/originating flow when we're trying to get out on time. Some things can wait.
 

Cherokee_Cruiser

Well-Known Member
I think it is possible to be a little over proactive. While I definitely appreciate FOs that lend a hand, sometimes situations are complex and I just need a few seconds to collect my thoughts and don’t want FOs doing anything at that specific point in time.


Yup. This is exactly it. An example of this, coming into JFK we get told to expect a hold at LENDY due to prior reports of severe turbulence and expect another route (long vectors) and perhaps a runway change at JFK. The controller has LITERALLY just said that and the FO goes, "what's your bingo fuel calculation?" But it's like hold on, lets collect thoughts first and a bingo calculation at this point is down the list. We haven't even gotten the holding instruction. We're not at LENDY. I can worry about that later. Right now, the more important issue I want to deal with first is the severe turbulence report. Who reported it? When? size of aircraft? etc. Then I want to tell the FAs and pax (worded appropriately) so people are all belted in. Then run it by dispatch and see what info they have as well for recent arrivals into JFK. Once those pertinent and more time critical details are accounted for and people are all strapped in, now we can calculate stuff that is not as time critical because we have plenty of fuel anyway. Don't get me wrong, the FO isn't wrong to suggest or ask what our bingo fuel is. It's just that in this very particular situation, I think we have higher priority items to take care of first. And by all means go ahead and be a proactive FO and do your own bingo calculation (I always did as FO, and compare to the CA to see if I did it wrong or right, learn from it, etc).
 

jtrain609

I'm a carnal, organic anagram.
Yup. This is exactly it. An example of this, coming into JFK we get told to expect a hold at LENDY due to prior reports of severe turbulence and expect another route (long vectors) and perhaps a runway change at JFK. The controller has LITERALLY just said that and the FO goes, "what's your bingo fuel calculation?" But it's like hold on, lets collect thoughts first and a bingo calculation at this point is down the list. We haven't even gotten the holding instruction. We're not at LENDY. I can worry about that later. Right now, the more important issue I want to deal with first is the severe turbulence report. Who reported it? When? size of aircraft? etc. Then I want to tell the FAs and pax (worded appropriately) so people are all belted in. Then run it by dispatch and see what info they have as well for recent arrivals into JFK. Once those pertinent and more time critical details are accounted for and people are all strapped in, now we can calculate stuff that is not as time critical because we have plenty of fuel anyway. Don't get me wrong, the FO isn't wrong to suggest or ask what our bingo fuel is. It's just that in this very particular situation, I think we have higher priority items to take care of first. And by all means go ahead and be a proactive FO and do your own bingo calculation (I always did as FO, and compare to the CA to see if I did it wrong or right, learn from it, etc).
FUEL PRED --> EXTRA

It takes 5 seconds to hit one button in the Airbus and see how much extra fuel you're dealing with, no calculating required. Looking at that FIRST is helpful, because you might not have the fuel to hold. What happens when you do all that other stuff first, do a turn or two and THEN look at the fuel, only to realize you didn't have the fuel to hold in the first place?

You're right, all those other things are correct.

But running out of gas is poor form.
 

Cherokee_Cruiser

Well-Known Member
FUEL PRED --> EXTRA

It takes 5 seconds to hit one button in the Airbus and see how much extra fuel you're dealing with, no calculating required. Looking at that FIRST is helpful, because you might not have the fuel to hold. What happens when you do all that other stuff first, do a turn or two and THEN look at the fuel, only to realize you didn't have the fuel to hold in the first place?

You're right, all those other things are correct.

But running out of gas is poor form.
I do too, but don't be that guy who gets fooled by that page due to "Garbage in, garbage out." I've seen guys manually kick the 00:45 FAR to a higher value. Now you have less extra time. Or guys who don't update the alternate fuel and show an arbitrarily higher extra time, even though your extra is less. Coming into SFO and alternate of OAK, alt fuel will show 0.3 on the fuel predict page. Paperwork shows 1.0 but not everyone updates/puts that in. When I look at that page, I always look at the left side values input first and then decide if the extra looks accurate and pertinent to our situation. I look at the fuel predict page (it's part of my approach self brief anyway) and before we condensed our briefings down, I'd always mention the extra fuel we had and how much time we could mess with. That I do even before approaching the terminal area.
 

bimmerphile

SuperCritical™ Member
FUEL PRED --> EXTRA

It takes 5 seconds to hit one button in the Airbus and see how much extra fuel you're dealing with, no calculating required. Looking at that FIRST is helpful, because you might not have the fuel to hold. What happens when you do all that other stuff first, do a turn or two and THEN look at the fuel, only to realize you didn't have the fuel to hold in the first place?

You're right, all those other things are correct.

But running out of gas is poor form.
Yeah asking who reported it and talking to dispatch about other reports seem less important than figuring out how long you can hold in a spot where there probably isn't severe turb because ATC most likely wouldn't park airplanes there.
Hold time was hammered into our heads during upgrade. Predeparture figure out what your planned extra is in minutes of fuel, keep track of your burn enroute and it'll always be fresh in your head.
 

Cherokee_Cruiser

Well-Known Member
Yeah asking who reported it and talking to dispatch about other reports seem less important than figuring out how long you can hold in a spot where there probably isn't severe turb because ATC most likely wouldn't park airplanes there.
Hold time was hammered into our heads during upgrade. Predeparture figure out what your planned extra is in minutes of fuel, keep track of your burn enroute and it'll always be fresh in your head.
So you'll ignore the severe turbulence aspect of it? No contacting your FAs, pax, dispatch? You're going towards LENDY and haven't even gotten the hold yet. Even if you have the hold, you're not even at LENDY yet. Frankly, I'd be more worried about the deteriorating ride that's coming from PPOS to LENDY. Personally, I'd prioritize. Specific math can wait. You've already done your briefing and checked fuel status to include how much extra you had.

The "who" matters too. My concern would be different in regards to a severe report by a C172 than a 737.
 

jtrain609

I'm a carnal, organic anagram.
I do too, but don't be that guy who gets fooled by that page due to "Garbage in, garbage out." I've seen guys manually kick the 00:45 FAR to a higher value. Now you have less extra time. Or guys who don't update the alternate fuel and show an arbitrarily higher extra time, even though your extra is less. Coming into SFO and alternate of OAK, alt fuel will show 0.3 on the fuel predict page. Paperwork shows 1.0 but not everyone updates/puts that in. When I look at that page, I always look at the left side values input first and then decide if the extra looks accurate and pertinent to our situation. I look at the fuel predict page (it's part of my approach self brief anyway) and before we condensed our briefings down, I'd always mention the extra fuel we had and how much time we could mess with. That I do even before approaching the terminal area.
Yeah...we do everything you're talking about at the gate before we leave. Surprised you guys don't.
 

bimmerphile

SuperCritical™ Member
So you'll ignore the severe turbulence aspect of it? No contacting your FAs, pax, dispatch? You're going towards LENDY and haven't even gotten the hold yet. Even if you have the hold, you're not even at LENDY yet. Frankly, I'd be more worried about the deteriorating ride that's coming from PPOS to LENDY. Personally, I'd prioritize. Specific math can wait. You've already done your briefing and checked fuel status to include how much extra you had.

The "who" matters too. My concern would be different in regards to a severe report by a C172 than a 737.
No, I wouldn't ignore it. It depends on how far that fix is from the airport, and our own position and altitude. I don't remember ever getting a turb report from ATC that ended up being a light aircraft, but that would be my first question clicking the mic after hearing that.
 
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