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Tips for Getting a Job:


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#1 wbrady755

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Posted 27 March 2017 - 01:56

So I was VERY active on these forums when I was looking for a job. Thank you to EVERYONE who had little nuggets of wisdom for me in the job hunt. I got a job a few months back, and I wanted to pay it forward. So here is what I learned.

 

 

1) Follow-ups: If you know ANYONE at a school, try to get a contact name, or just tell your friend that you submitted your resume. It will at the very least get your resume an extra 7.5 seconds with the boss man.

 

2) "Be a Bro": Companies need your resume to meet certain thresholds, but being able to mesh with the other employees is important. Don't be a dick, and make it a focus to get along with the other pilots, the mechanics, the secretaries, everyone.

 

3) Be courteous: I had 1 job offer, and a second company wanted me to come interview with them. I didn't the freedom time to interview with the second company, so I called the owner (of second company) and politely told him that I couldn't risk my FIRST job offer for a job interview at a SECOND company, even though it was a great opportunity. 

-Long story short- The FIRST company heard about this SECOND company offer, and they were worried about me jumping ship to the SECOND (read- better paying, more respectable) company). The FIRST company rescinded my job offer, and I was effectively out of a job. I called up the SECOND company immediately, and he told me that I stood out with my professionalism in turning him down. Three days later, I had a job. Don't burn your bridges.

 

4) STUDY! Any CFI job, etc. is going to quiz you on any oral knowledge (to include POH, RFM, FARs, etc). You should prepare for an interview 2x more than you prepared for your CFII checkride. Anyone who can hold the controls can pass a CFI ride, but only a small portion of pilots can articulate aerodynamics in a way that students can understand. (I can give examples if you need them).

 

5) #4 being said... I didn't have ALL the answers... And I told him that. But what I did do was research what I didn't know, and give him the lesson to the standard that was expected. I said something to the effect of: "I'm not Chuck Yeager or Igor Sikorsky, but I have gotten to where I am by busting my ass. Here is the research I did to prove it..."

 

6) Flight weight- You probably already know this, but in an R22/R44 school, you really need to be under 200 LBS to be considered. Under 180 is optimal. Skip the fries, buddy.

 

7) Be honest- Any reputable company is going to look into your logbook, military records, facebook, etc. Don't lie on your resume: It will come out later if you're being a POS.

 

 

 

I'm sure there are plenty of other things I learned. Please feel free to add a comment or send me a message. Some people helped me get a job, not its my turn to do the same.

 


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#2 mudkow60

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Posted 27 March 2017 - 05:36

6)  Cute guy.  

 

6b) Don't be too tough on us bigger pilots though...



#3 r22butters

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Posted 27 March 2017 - 11:13

You forgot the most important quality needed to find a job as a pilot,...above all else!!!

DON'T BE A BUTTERS! :D
The only dream I have left is to live long enough to see the pilot shortage. Its been about fourteen years since they first told me it was coming, so,...

Aaaaaaaany day now! :D

#4 Wally

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Posted 27 March 2017 - 12:00

Pull your pants up, butters.

 

Actually, "DON'T BE A BUTTERS!" is good advice if you're interviewing to be a pilot. Being a professional pilot isn't about being 'yourself', except where your personal strengths apply. The employer/customer should be able to 'snap' one pilot out and 'click' another into place without any difference in performance, and you want to be that replacement bit. The rest of wbrady755's advice is spot on.

 

I recommend learning as much about a company as possible before you start the process. Round pegs aren't happy in square holes, don't pretend to be 'square' to get the job unless you're going to be 'square'.


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Just a pilot (retired, so I have a LOT of time)...


#5 avbug

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Posted 27 March 2017 - 14:16

3) Be courteous: I had 1 job offer, and a second company wanted me to come interview with them. I didn't the freedom time to interview with the second company, so I called the owner (of second company) and politely told him that I couldn't risk my FIRST job offer for a job interview at a SECOND company, even though it was a great opportunity. 

-Long story short- The FIRST company heard about this SECOND company offer, and they were worried about me jumping ship to the SECOND (read- better paying, more respectable) company). The FIRST company rescinded my job offer, and I was effectively out of a job. I called up the SECOND company immediately, and he told me that I stood out with my professionalism in turning him down. Three days later, I had a job. Don't burn your bridges.

 

 

 

 

You did burn your bridges with the first company.  You gave "courtesy" to the second company, but not the first.  The first fired you, or retracted the offer, and the second saved your bacon.  You played the odds, banking on the company you liked best, but didn't extend that "courtesy" to both companies.

 

You're correct, one should be as courteous as possible.  However, when seeking jobs, it's usually best to play one's cards close to the vest until you've settled on an offer.  It's not at all uncommon for a present employer to terminate employment if they find out you're looking or have interviewed (or been offered a job), and it's not uncommon for one or more parties to get their nose twisted over the matter.  

 

It's a good idea to always be looking for work, even when you have a good job.  Prospective companies usually understand when you fill out the application and check the box "no" when asked "may we contact your present employer?"  They understand that your present employer may not take well to the idea that you're looking (many don't), and they understand that you don't want to burn that bridge, at least until you have a bird in the hand from the new company.  All parts should understand that the new job will be contingent on what your present employer has to say, anyway.

 

Aviation is such that jobs can end with zero notice; aircraft go out of service, companies merge or go out of business.  Furloughs happen.  Economic downturns occur, and aviation is a leading edge economic indicator; it's one of the first to topple when the economy begins to turn.  Always be looking for work, and it doesn't hurt to be interviewing, even when you're working a good job.  Every interview makes you better at interviewing, and it keeps you current and in the game.  

 

Try not to burn bridges, but recognize that in your statement, that's just what you did.



#6 Azhigher

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Posted 27 March 2017 - 20:06

Try not to burn bridges, but recognize that in your statement, that's just what you did.

 

I respectfully disagree, under the assumption that he didn't tell the first company that he had a second job offer on the table and try to leverage it. Reading the original post, I don't think he did.



#7 UH60L-IP

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Posted 27 March 2017 - 20:22

OP, thanks for putting that out there for others.

 

I'm not in your same boat, so I'll give a bit of advice for perhaps those a bit further along in their careers.

 

Early last year I easily met the qualifications for most jobs you might find posted/not posted (hours, NVG, night unaided, actual instrument, turbine, twin, etc.). I applied for exactly three postions, phone interviewed for all three, personal interviewed for two (politely declined personal interview for the third).

 

I attended what I felt was a professional interview for a respectable air ambulance company. I arrived early, dressed sharply, and had records in hand. Had a long tour of the facility, helicopter, entire operation, etc. I met with the lead pilot and area manager. They made a call and put me on speaker to talk to another regional manager (hiring authority). I spent a couple of hours at the facility in total. I was quite impressed with the operation and believed that I would receive an offer.

 

However, I also knew that I was going to attend another job interview in less than 72 hours with an equally reputable company (but not air ambulance). I had told them this at the time I was invited to the interview so they knew that ahead of time. All considered, I felt that it would be a better fit simply because of location and family concerns. I was very clear with the first company that I would not entertain an offer (if received) until at least considering the second company with whom I had committed to the interview.

 

I received an offer from the first company the next day. I reaffirmed my obligation and they respected it. The offer remained open for 3 days. Immediately after my interview with the second company I was offered the position, which I accepted. I called back the first company. The manager was more than considerate of my decision based upon my forthrightness and honesty. Further, he provided me with his personal cell phone number and told me to give him a call should I ever see an opening in a location that I would consider.

 

While I don't have any plans to leave my current company I don't think that the obligation to be professional ends simply when you more than meet any written requirements for a job. Honesty, integrity, and the value of one's word will be remembered as equally as the poor attitude or lack of professionalism displayed.

 

Finally, I have had the opportunity to recommend people I know for positions within the company that I currently work. I will also not hesitate to recommend against persons I don't think should work here.

 

In the end, I know how hard it is to get that first "real" job (I started as a civilian prior to military and going back civilian). Just because more people answer the phone and return messages when you have the hours doesn't mean your attitude should be any different.


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#8 wbrady755

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Posted 27 March 2017 - 23:16

 

 

You did burn your bridges with the first company.  You gave "courtesy" to the second company, but not the first.  The first fired you, or retracted the offer, and the second saved your bacon.  You played the odds, banking on the company you liked best, but didn't extend that "courtesy" to both companies.

 

You're correct, one should be as courteous as possible.  However, when seeking jobs, it's usually best to play one's cards close to the vest until you've settled on an offer.  It's not at all uncommon for a present employer to terminate employment if they find out you're looking or have interviewed (or been offered a job), and it's not uncommon for one or more parties to get their nose twisted over the matter.  

 

It's a good idea to always be looking for work, even when you have a good job.  Prospective companies usually understand when you fill out the application and check the box "no" when asked "may we contact your present employer?"  They understand that your present employer may not take well to the idea that you're looking (many don't), and they understand that you don't want to burn that bridge, at least until you have a bird in the hand from the new company.  All parts should understand that the new job will be contingent on what your present employer has to say, anyway.

 

Aviation is such that jobs can end with zero notice; aircraft go out of service, companies merge or go out of business.  Furloughs happen.  Economic downturns occur, and aviation is a leading edge economic indicator; it's one of the first to topple when the economy begins to turn.  Always be looking for work, and it doesn't hurt to be interviewing, even when you're working a good job.  Every interview makes you better at interviewing, and it keeps you current and in the game.  

 

Try not to burn bridges, but recognize that in your statement, that's just what you did.

AVBUG, I don't disagree with you. I tried my best to be a good "new hire". But here is exactly what happened. The chains of events were purely a product of circumstance, and I promise you that I didn't try to leverage anything. I had to look out for my best interests while also maintaining professionalism. Here is what happened:

 

I applied for both jobs about the same time. Job TWO took my information, and I heard nothing back. Job ONE asked me to fly in for an interview. The interview went well, and they offered me a job. I hadn't heard anything back from job TWO in three weeks, so I told job ONE that "I really like your company, I am 90% in for your company, just let me go home and talk to my girlfriend, family, etc." On the way back home (literally 3 hours after the first offer), job TWO called me out of the blue and asked if I could come down for an interview. I debated telling job ONE about it at all, but after about 36 hours I called them and asked politely for 72 more hours to decide, and informed them that I had another interview to go to. He told me that he didnt have that much time to wait around, so I said "screw it bird in hand>two in the bush."

 

I started my moving plans for job ONE, told everyone I knew that I had a job, etc. at company ONE. Three days later he put me on a conference call and laid on the bad news. My only real complaint was that he let me make travel arrangements (flight, u-haul, etc) for a job I didnt have. Such is life.

 

I tried to do my best to be forthcoming, but the timeline of events wasn't in my favor. Luckily, job TWO did in fact save my bacon. 

 

Lesson learned: I took advice from a lot of non-pilots who work in less competitive industries where it is expected that you may have a great deal of opportunities. Aviation is different, and they always operate with the idea that you may jump ship for something better. As AVBUG said "Be courteous, but play your cards close to your vest". There is a VERY fine line between the two. Whether or not honesty is the best policy is up to you based on the situation at hand.

 

I dont hold anything against either party, I just want to share my experience with everyone else so that they can be well-informed.



#9 r22butters

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Posted 28 March 2017 - 12:58

Gee, I would have thought that "don't be a butters" would have gotten like a million likes by now, but oh' well...

So lets see. What tip can one get from The Life of Butters?

Well, if you're not the "norm" in any way, like you cannot be a CFI (for whatever reason) or you're not a "social butterfly" rendering such events like Helisuccess useless and what not, or you're an awesome stick ('cause you know,...I AM) but you have the personality of a wet dish cloth...

DON'T GIVE UP!

You will eventually find a job,...after all, I did, and if I can, then anyone can!

,...just note that after about two years, the path to the dark side will begin to forever dominate your destiny, and you may turn into a huge cynical a**hole! :D
The only dream I have left is to live long enough to see the pilot shortage. Its been about fourteen years since they first told me it was coming, so,...

Aaaaaaaany day now! :D

#10 R22139RJ

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Posted 01 April 2017 - 20:52

Don't worry about avbug. His mom's basement is always an employment position. He doesn't have to worry about any bridges. Just the stairs making too much noise when his mom brings him pizza bites.
Spray it Right, Spray it Tight




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