Why should or shouldn't we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

jes77jes

Well-Known Member
Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

I'm not trying to start an argument here, I would just like some honest help. O.K. So many of you guys that are already flying for careers, seem like you wouldn't recommend aviation. From what I've read, some of you wished you hadn't gotten into it. If you had it to do all over again would you be where you are today? Or would you prefer some other career. Also a big question, how many of you that seem to shun us away from the industry can remember the job or jobs you were doing before flying? Would you shun us away from those jobs too? Does flying get old, is it the being away from home that gets old, what is it that turns people sour on the industry? I don't want to dis the people who have been there done that, I just think a lot of us would like a little more insight besides "don't get in this industry".
Thanks for any help, it is more valuable than you can imagine.
Jesse
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

I would say that, like any job, a flying job will eventually become just that: another job. Another job with ups and downs, problems, and the good and bad that come with any job.

My problem is that I don't like many of the people I have to work with. Our personalities clash (they're lemmings, I'm not) and that detracts from the overall job experience and causes me to be the bitter person I am. Also, the politics of my particular job do the same thing.
 

Captain_Bob

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

[ QUOTE ]
can remember the job or jobs you were doing before flying? Would you shun us away from those jobs too?

[/ QUOTE ]

Well, I'm not yet a professional aviator (yet), but here's my opinion. (FWIW)

I am a mid-life career changer. I have quite the resume of middle-management retail-related jobs. Would I shun people away from that?? My God yes! Never, ever, go into retail management or suggest that someone do so... unless you really dislike them.


In my years in retail management, I have been subject to Management changeovers, Out of Business, Company bought out, Downsized, and finally just plain burned-out.

I flew for fun... and intend to continue to do the same, even after my ATP training. I have no grandiose dreams at my age of being a 747 Capt. flying overseas... and I do not intend to actively persue that route unless (due to my diverse management background, extremely exceptional piloting skills, consistent networking, and a hayload of luck) those doors open to me.

My expectations are simply to fly in such a capacity as to provide a decent living for my family and keep it fun. Ideally, I'd like to use my management and flight skills to run a flight school.

In fact, I told Jim Koziarsky, VP of ATP, that my goal was to run the Dallas ATP location! That prompted a good chuckle from him, but I'm not exactly sure he thought I was serious.

To me that would be perfect... combining my love of aviation with my management skills...

So I guess the moral to my hopeful story is... Make it what you want it to be. If you are just starting out in aviation, realize that there are MANY more routes than just FBO or Academy to Regionals to Majors to Furloughs


Most pilots I have spoken with say that they like the money, hate the hours and the red-tape... but also say that some of the best times they had flying was teaching... There's something to that I think...

Bob
 

Sprint100

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

I'm a career changer also. I left a good position in I.T. to go after my passion. I also realize that flying is a job that demands hard-work, dedication, a strong stomach(not just from the motion stuff), being broke the first 3 to 5 years, and crazy schedules.
I would and wouldn't recommend a lot of jobs based on your individual personality. We know alot of the ups in aviation, and just to balance things out, we are made aware of some negatives we knew about and some we didn't know about. Just because someone may seem totally negative doesn't necessarily mean that it is a bogus industry or job.
Best bet, is to gather as much info as you can. Weigh all the info with your own personality factored in and then decide if aviation is for you. Maybe you like planes, but you find you don't want to be a pilot, there are many non-piloting careers to research.
Hope that helped a little!!!!!!!!!!!
 

sbav8r

New Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

MikeD you crack me up. My image of you is something of a mix between Yossarian, from "Catch 22" and Lt. Col. William 'Bill' Kilgore, from "Apocalypse Now."

As for me I can't imagine doing anything else in life. I didn't find my way into aviation, it found me. I've had the bug since a young child and if I tried to ignore it I think I would go insane. Life on the ground is not for me. Despite the ups and downs IMHO it is still worth it. With that said, remember that it's still a good idea to have some sort of back up if anything goes wrong.
 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

See my post in similar thread
 

Snow

'Not a new member'
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

I dunno I think a lot of the pilots here are just wingers, I still have spoken to several airline pilots who still claim it's the best job in the world. Quit worring about the little stuff guys, life's too short for that crap.
 

tonyw

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in a

The best thing about what Doug has done with this site is that you don't just get the sugar coated stuff you see in brochures from academies. You get to see the downside of the industry as well.

I kind of stumbled into aviation and a pursuit of a career in it. I just decided to do it for fun and then I said, you know what, this is really cool. How do I go about getting paid to do this?

I've done a lot of research and read a lot, and despite all the warts, I still want to do it. You have to do the same thing and you have to figure out if you still want to do it after reading about the downside.

Here's a great article on Avweb about just that.

http://www.avweb.com/news/columns/185019-1.html
 

ready2fly

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in a

[ QUOTE ]
I kind of stumbled into aviation and a pursuit of a career in it. I just decided to do it for fun and then I said, you know what, this is really cool. How do I go about getting paid to do this?

I've done a lot of research and read a lot, and despite all the warts, I still want to do it. You have to do the same thing and you have to figure out if you still want to do it after reading about the downside.

[/ QUOTE ]
Ditto! Well said.

My thoughts exactly!
 

Cheechako

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in a

I highly recommend being a professional pilot as a career. I love my job and am very glad I chose to do this.

My plan growing up was to be a missionary pilot somewhere overseas (South America, Africa, Indonesia), but then I found out I didn't enjoy doing the maintenance required. I also married a woman who didn't really want to raise a family in a third world country. After talking to a couple corporate pilots, I decided I should go for the airlines. So I applied to Skywest and only Skywest. I truely believe that God numbered my steps and brought me here.

So now here I am moving up the seniority list, making a decent living with a wonderful family, a great house, and a top-rate company to work for. I love going to work! I have to fly this afternoon and am looking forward to it. I don't get wrapped up in the politics of the company, pilot group, or who gets what benefits. I just do my job, enjoy the view, and go home to my beautiful family.

Lord willing I'll move on to Alaska Airlines, move to Anchorage and life will be complete!

It's a great career.
 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in a

How many years have you been at Skywest?
 

braidkid

New Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in a

[ QUOTE ]
How many years have you been at Skywest?

[/ QUOTE ]

Must be under three months, ehhh John????
Sorry, couldnt resist!
 

Cheechako

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in a

Four years in Aug.
 

vsnick

New Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in a

Good one B-kid. LOL
 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in a

[ QUOTE ]
Four years in Aug.

[/ QUOTE ]

By that time at Mesa I was a CRJ captain. Have you upgraded yet?
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

[ QUOTE ]
MikeD you crack me up. My image of you is something of a mix between Yossarian, from "Catch 22" and Lt. Col. William 'Bill' Kilgore, from "Apocalypse Now."



[/ QUOTE ]

You're pretty spot-on, just ask Doug. Like Yossarian, I don't care much for the insanity of the job around me, and how everyone else just seems to accept the inane things of the military because "it's always been done that way". For the USAF, that's 53 years of management tradition unhindered by progress. You see, I'm one of those guys that, if I actually do stay in, will probably still be a Captain, or may make Major just because they're short of people (selection rate for Major these days is @88%). I belong in that INL job flying down in Bolivia/Colombia. Believe me, the book "Catch-22" is spot-on about how inane the military is run, and how everyone just treats that absurdity as ops-normal.

As for Kilgore; like him, I like to do my own thing and cut the crap and get the job done. And I don't care for commanders and peers that only look out for themselves. Buck the system is the name of the game. I got asked why I never show up at the O'club on Friday nights. I replied that it's because I really don't like any of you, I just am forced to put up with you; and since I spend the better part of 14 hours or more of my day around you guys (weekends sometimes too), I feel that's enough. There's a few good ones, but they're few and far between.

Then there's the arrogant asses that I don't give a crap for. Story for you:

Back when I was a somewhat new wingman, I had an experience with a flight lead that was a weapons school graduate, and had the attitude to go with it. While briefing for a flight, he told me that I'd better not screw up, since all wingmen were screw-ups, and he didn't want to have to put up with that from me. Maybe, just maybe, if I shadowed his ways, I could wear the coveted weapons school patch that he wore. And so the brief went on. Now, pilots have their own assigned call-signs they fly with, but on this sortie, we had an assigned callsign from higher headquarters due to the area we were flying into (the DMZ area of Korea). This particular pilots callsign he flew with was "Spam", but today we were "Plasma" flight.

So after getting out to our respective jets, I run through my start checks and await check-in time on the radios. For formation flight, the flight leader will check-in his flight on all applicable radios, UHF/VHF/ FM as applicable, prior to launch; both to check that each aircrafts radios work, and each flight member is on the correct frequency (in the A-10, UHF is the primary freqency to outer agencies, VHF is back-up, and the FM is for us to talk to each other interflight). Well, he apparently, out of habit, forgot that out callsign was "Plasma" that day, and right at check-in time, he checks me with "Spam 11, check", to which I don't reply. I know it's him, but that's not my assigned callsign that day, and it's a faux pas to reply to other callsigns. So I sit there as he calls again, sounding a little frustrated. My crew chief who's on the intercom, says "sir, isn't that your flight lead calling?" to which I reply, "could be, but that's not my assigned callsign today, chief". And so I sit while the flight lead calls me on FM and the conversation goes like this:

"2, this is 1, are you up on Uniform?"

"Affirm"

[on UHF]"Spam 11 check Uniform"

....nothing from me

"Spam 11 check UNIFORM!"

....nothing from me

[on FM] "2, this is one, is your volume turned up on UHF?"

"Affirm"

"Are you reading ANYTHING on UHF???"

"Well, some Spam flight is checking in, but his wingman isn't answering, they must have radio problems or something...."

to which very shortly thereafter there comes on UHF"

"Plasma 11, check"

to which I curtly reply:

"2"

and so on for the rest of the check-in. He didn't talk to me much for the rest of the flight.

When we got back and went into debrief, he was still pissed.

"What the f%ck? why weren't you answering my calls on check-in, didn't you know it was me?"

"Well, no, your voice in person sounds different from your voice on the radio..."

"Well didn't you know that Spam is my normal callsign?"

"No, I 'm just a wingman, I don't know anyone's assigned callsigns, just the one I'm assigned for each flight...."

[as he's getting steamed.......]

"Well didn't you f$#king know that there was no Spam flight scheduled for today?"

"No. Again, I'm just a wingman, not the squadron duty officer. I don't have the entire flight schedule memorized, just the pertinent information that concerns my particular flight....plus, I didn' figure such an experienced person like yourself would make such a basic mistake, so I didn't figure it was you, and hence, I didn't answer the calls."

He knew I knew, I knew that he knew that I knew. But you know what? You treat me like the stupid wingman in the brief, I'll be the stupid wingman in the flight. And he and I have never gotten along since.

Screw em all.

And remember, Charlie don't surf.
 

Derg

Cap, Roci
Staff member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

[ QUOTE ]
MikeD you crack me up. My image of you is something of a mix between Yossarian, from "Catch 22" and Lt. Col. William 'Bill' Kilgore, from "Apocalypse Now."

[/ QUOTE ]

Oh my god, that's exactly MikeD!

Spot-on!

"That's Major Danby sir, D-A-N-B-YYYYY...."
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

[ QUOTE ]
[
"That's Major Danby sir, D-A-N-B-YYYYY...."

[/ QUOTE ]

General: "Take Major Danby out and have him shot"

Colonel: "Yes sir, at once" (turning to his second-in command) "Have Major Danby taken out and shot"

God that's classic............

So when you going to be back in town, Doug?
 

Derg

Cap, Roci
Staff member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

I'm doing a four-day, then I'll be out in SFO for a few days for YAW (yet another wedding). Then starting another trip next week I think!
 

albatross

New Member
Re: Why should or shouldn\'t we go for flying careers? Many of us want to know.Thanks in advnc

MikeD-

You have quickly become one of the best things about this already fantastic site. We miss you when you're not around. Man. (sniffle)

I think you would have been at home as one of the Air Transport Command pilots as described in Fate Is the Hunter: independent, not too concerned with rules, and excellent fliers. They were civilian pilots, most of them, not really burdened with military regs, just with figuring out how to get stuff from here to there the best way they could.
 
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