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Is an Airline Pilot Career a good career to get in to?

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2011-04-01 10:56:17
2011-04-01 10:56:17

Depends, most likely yes if that is your career goal. Getting a bachelors degree in piloting helps as well. Pilots I have met started flying at an early age ex 16 in order to acquire the hours necessary to continue to improve their qualifications and move to another level of training, like instrument etc. Many pilots flew in the armed services. The pay is good and so are the travel benefits for families. The only thing is that you are away from home some of the time. Many other degrees are also helpful EX: B.A. Business or any aviation subject area. Also many different types of flying are possible in different areas. A wonderful career for any man or woman with flying in their blood. I think you either have the bug or you don't. Believe me, you will know it.

Deregulation and post 9-11 have dramatically changed the expectations you should have about a professional pilot career.

"When I fly, I always take Delta… That's because they pay their pilots the most money… You don't want to fly with unhappy pilots."

Johnny Carson, Tonight Show monologue, 1981

Traversing race, culture, gender, education level and socio-economic standing is the desire to be happy. It is the most powerful force buried at the center of the human soul. An individual's "happiness" is directly linked to how life unfolds relative to expectations. Hopes and dreams in a mate, family, friends, social standing, or a career are just a few areas that can fall short, meet, or exceed expectations.

Tragic irony of high expectations is the possibility they will not be met hence a greater risk of an unhappy life. Throughout life expectations are created and destroyed. Over the course of a lifetime a common pattern emerges where expectations follow a trace akin to a bell curve. Zero at birth, peaking mid-life, and diminishing as one passes the "mid-life crisis". With this knowledge one might conclude the key to happiness at any point along the curve is to simply lower your expectations. Unfortunately expectations are often set as a result of something external to or as a result of something the individual did or did not accomplish. Print, video, and other environmental exposure are powerful influences. Performance in academics, sports, social life, college and graduate school play an important part of setting expectations. Success indexes life's expectation curve higher while failure drives it lower. A driven, successful, highly capable person who has climbed the ladder to Chief of Neurosurgery at Massachusetts General will have radically higher expectations than a person who flunked out of high school, smoked dope for three years before setting a lifetime career goal to become a forklift driver at the city garbage dump.

Business leaders recognize it's essential in a market-based enterprise to have happy employees. "Best man or woman for the job" does not imply the one who has the highest level of capability but rather the person whose capabilities and expectations most closely match the duties, responsibilities, and compensation the job has to offer. Management must balance the need for competence against cost. When a business cannot meet employee and customer expectations balanced against revenue, it will fail. When an entire industry finds itself in this situation, the entire industry will fail.

In the airline industry an unprecedented percentage of unit revenue and unit expense is outside control of management. In 1978 pricing power was wiped out with passage of the Airline Deregulation Act. During the 1990's the internet matured making it almost impossible to gain a revenue advantage over a competitor. Awash in red ink it was no surprise the chainsaw was wielded at

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