SFO and Consultant Trainer TRI/TRE A320 and A330
Previous airline/s: VIRGIN ATLANTIC and CAPTAIN @ EASYJET, BMIBABY & BRITISH MIDLAND
Uni degree: BEng(Hons) Aeronautics & Astronautics
Do you speak any other languages? Italian and German at intermediate/semi-competent tourist level
Airline training route: Integrated ATPL
ATO/s attended: OXFORD AIR TRAINING SCHOOL 1998-1999
Why did you want to become a pilot?
Probably saw Star Wars aged 6 and flying aeroplanes seemed the closest thing I could manage to actually being Han Solo. Also I love engineering, science and big machines, as well as solving problems, working with people, and exploring.
How did you fund your training?
British Midland Part-sponsorship + graduate loan
Was training a breeze or did you find it a challenge?
I very much enjoyed training but put a lot of pressure on myself to achieve, so I understand the stress that trainees or any pilots can find themselves under, at different stages of their careers;
What was most challenging?
Coming to terms with failure, or lack of instant success, and instead recognising it as a normal part of the learning and development process.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I’m quite a social person so enjoy being able to share the best things about flying with a crew and col- leagues; I like travel and exploration, and the chance to do something rather special as a career. Being able to participate in the training of fellow pilots has been a career highlight so far, in being able to support and guide colleagues to succeed, and hopefully share some the enthusiasm I have for aviation.
What is most challenging about your job?
Long-haul flying - physical cost of jet-lag & night flying, and the impact of time away from family. Training - trying to be the ‘critical friend’ needed by pilots sometimes; finding ways to provide the feedback needed for positive change in the long run, even though it may be
Which Pilot Competencies are of most interest to you?
I don’t think any particular ‘competency’ in the ICAO model has overall importance or significance - they are all linked. You can’t hand fly accurately under high workload, to manage your workload you need good teamwork, knowledge, and SA; and everything is tied together with communication of one form or another. I’m a big fan of how competency-based training is used to identify the root causes of performance (good or bad) - it doesn’t really matter which competency you focus on, as long as you gain insight into the root cause in the end (and use this knowledge to improve).
Whilst with easyJet I was a Peer Support Volunteer and I am a current member of the Royal Aeronautical Society (MRAeS).