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Something to consider... this could lead to some great topics.


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I was just on a long cross country and saw a very professionally run operation up-close. I got to see some of the GOM operations and was really impressed at the quality of pilots, mechanics and other employees i met while out there. ((One of the first things that came to mind was that many of the young folks i see coming up thru the ranks, both at Heli-Ops and other operations, are really going to have to raise their bars if they want to move on into one of the better commercial ops.. because the competition is top shelf, at lease at the operators i visited. I am a little frustrated at times when i see folks that only have to dig in, or work really hard for a few years, to take a bigger step in their careers. If i get time i will write a post about how much of a difference focus and dedication can make on the rest of your career; for example, if you end up at a better operator, to start out, you will probably start out making more $$ up front.. which, will follow you throughout your whole career. Also, if you bust ass, and get a post CFI job a year early, that can be $30k more right from the start (a year of salary at a good commercial op, ~$60K, as opposed to $25k as an instructor). NOTE: i realize some of you did 'bust ass', but got stuck in areas with little or no opportunities, i am not speaking of you, but the folks that just cruise and wait for something to fall in their laps)).

 

Ok, off the rant and back to the subject. One of the things i have always wanted to do but haven't found time for it because of our growth, was to do short interview videos for our website about what the life is really like out there as professional helicopter pilots. Lyn has started this on a much larger level and i think it's an awesome focus. Many people come in and say 'i wanna be an EMS pilot', or 'i wanna fly the GOM' but they have no idea what that really is..

 

So, i was thinking this past week, that it would be very cool to start a few topics here about the different jobs out there and what they are really like. The pros and cons, the pay, the aircraft, the bosses, the living conditions, travel to and from, people you work with.. i could go on and on but i know you are getting the picture.

 

I would like to see a few ground rules; like, PLEASE, if you have not worked in the subject environment, do not post.. do not tell us about stories you have heard, or embellish on your couple of days in the GOM before you failed your check ride or got frightened because of the weather or sharks (although, it might be good to get those comments so i am open to your ideas and thoughts about how to write the ground rules)...

 

Do not post if you PLAN to have a company in the future that is focused in the subject area.. I would like to see folks that have worked at least a few months at the jobs.. and, not just pilots, we need to see all sides of the operations.. mechanics, even the secretaries and what they see and feel. If you have team members that are not on VR you can ask them to type you a short paragraph of their point of view and you can post it for them as i have done with some of my team's comments about SBT...

 

These are just my ideas about how to proceed, and instead of starting the first topic "Helicopter Tour Pilot", "CFI", or what ever, i wanted to put them here so the ones of you that are interested and are smarter than me, could add to the ideas here before we started posting.. to sort of get a focused front. Please don't start a new topic until we have decided on a plan of action and some guidelines..

 

This topic here would also be the place to start listing the jobs you know about, and/or want to get more information about. Then as we get more organized, we'll start a topic on each.. I think we should have a 'pros and cons' section, but am not sure how to lay it out..

 

I sincerely hope i am not stepping on anyones toes here, and, that many of you will participate...

 

What do you think??

 

aloha,

 

dp

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Sounds like a pretty good idea, in my humble opinion.

 

Just might be a chance for people to find out the realities of a particular job before they work at getting themselves a job that they really would not enjoy. Also might reveal other possibilities for career paths besides the Vegas or GOM route.

 

I, for one, would love to hear some input from somebody who has done some wildlife management type of flying; either local or overseas.

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what shall i post

 

Always start by acknowledging you owe me a beer, and that you could not have done it without my sage advice. That said, there are probably pilots here that wouldn't mind some real GOM experience shared.

 

Personally, I am not one of them! I would like to hear from some of the contract carded guys that fly fires. 205's and 412's are in my dreams!!

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I'd be happy to contribute. I worked in primary flight instruction for a few years, doing both FAA and JAA flight training, and am now employed at a large Gulf of Mexico operator in the training department as a instructor and check airman in the A119 and EC135. I don't really ever sign in here, just lurk mostly, but if you want, I can easily be reached through my email:

 

cgellene at yahoo dot com

 

 

Thanks...

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Always start by acknowledging you owe me a beer, and that you could not have done it without my sage advice. That said, there are probably pilots here that wouldn't mind some real GOM experience shared.

 

Personally, I am not one of them! I would like to hear from some of the contract carded guys that fly fires. 205's and 412's are in my dreams!!

 

@ Goldy,

 

iam not flying a 205 or 412 but iam carded and will post a long report about fire -fighting, how to get carded, requirements, income......etc in the next couple of days.

 

Falko

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Hey all,

 

thanks for your input here, and to everyone that commented on this at the Heli-Success and thru emails.. i am excited to see it come together.

 

One of the great things i got out of the Heli-Success seminar was meeting more of you, AND, realizing that we have NO IDEA the sorts of folks we have here, or at least i didn't and i know a ton of you/them. I won't name them as they clearly don't want to brag or even post about who they are, but i will tell you it humbled me to no end. Just for example; there is one member that has 22,000 hours (i know because i have his resume), and it's someone you would never expect.. I love that about this forum, it is such a great resource and we should not take it for granted, AND, we should share it with as many people as possible because it CAN make a difference in their careers...

 

OK, off my soap box!! :-)

 

I know Chris is probably in a coma after the seminar because he worked the hardest of everyone, from before the event started to long into the night, he went over resumes.. non-stop, he didn't even stop for lunch but just kept working, i hope everyone that he helped realizes what an effort he put forth.. Chris, when ever you do regain consciousness i hope you will help us organize this thread, here are some of my ideas:

 

Separate topic lines for each job... Separate 'topics', but listed here under flight training because it will be for the folks moving up (if you all think they should be listed under 'General' or any where else, say so.. i am completely open to suggestions, but i do think they should be all in the same place for sure.

 

"My experiences as a CFI", or something like that.

 

Here are some organizational ideas but not necessarily in this order.. and keep in mind, it would be better if we could come up with one format that worked for every job.

 

a pros list

 

a cons list

 

are you currently working in that area, or in the past, if in the past, how long ago and for how long.

 

money made, why it's less or more, AND, how did you make that better or worse.

 

if it's in the past, would you go back? if you did, what would you do differently

 

if you flew multiple jobs, say so, but don't get them mixed up, try to stay organized, save the 'fire fighting' for that topic and post 'tours' under that separate topic. the more organized we stay, the easier it will be for the folks doing their searches.

 

Please, please stay professional, this info could be put in an ebook or at least printed out for new pilots in training to educate them about what the industry is really like. I do not mean don't be negative if that's how you feel, we want to know the good and the bad, but don't slam people or operators.

 

Thanks again for your time and input.. Let's plan to start all of the topics this coming Sunday or Monday.

 

for now, please post all of the jobs you can think of here:

 

CFI

Tours

Fire Fighting

Spraying (agricultural)

Corporate

Gulf of Mexico

International

Tuna Boats

Chief Pilot

Safety Pilot

EMS

ENG

Law Enforcement

Utility

 

wow, that list is longer than i was expecting.. no worries.. this will be great. i am sure i forgot some jobs so please add them and we'll get a topic started for all of them. (on that subject, if you can think of a better way to organize this... anyone.. please speak up.. if you want to pm me and or talk on the phone don't hesitate to email me and i'll give you a call : dp770@comcast.net)

 

 

aloha,

 

dp

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Hey,

 

thanks to everyone for your help and input on this topic. here we go:

 

I will start the separate topics under 'General Helicopter Fourm', and will only add three to start; GOM, Tours & CFIs.

 

I will cut and paste some questions that we put together but please feel free to add what ever you want like Falko did (GREAT post btw).

 

Questions:

 

What were your qualifications (hours, certificates, and prior experience) when you got this job?

What was your pay and other considerations (vacation, insurance, 401k matching, etc).

How long did you work in this area? How many hours per year did you log?

What were your primary job responsibilities?

What was best about the job?

What was worst about the job?

Where did you go afterward, and how did this job help you get into your next one?

Was this your dream job or a rung in the ladder? Was it what you expected it to be?

If it's in the past, would you go back? if you did return, what would you do differently now?

 

What advice would you impart on folks wanting to follow this career path?

 

Thanks for your input in advance!!

 

aloha,

 

dp

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ummmm.... there are already sub-forums for Utility/Offshore, ENG, EMS, Law Enforcement, Military, Career...... maybe Lyn could just add a couple of subforums that way the "life of" threads can all be organized into there respective subforums, in other words why waste what we already got....

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ummmm.... there are already sub-forums for Utility/Offshore, ENG, EMS, Law Enforcement, Military, Career...... maybe Lyn could just add a couple of subforums that way the "life of" threads can all be organized into there respective subforums, in other words why waste what we already got....

 

 

Thanks for the input Rogue, Yeah, i was thinking that too, but didn't really know how to start and wanted it to be under the flight training sub-forum so prospective pilots in training could easily find them... then i was thinking maybe we could move them once they get started. i do like the idea of having them under their prospective forums but also like the idea of them all being in one spot.... not sure what to do there!

 

jmho

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Hey dp,

A few other jobs I was thinking of that I have seen advertised over the years:

 

Cherry Drying

Photo

Pollenation

Frost Control

 

Don't know if these short term jobs are what you are looking for??

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Thanks for the input Rogue, Yeah, i was thinking that too, but didn't really know how to start and wanted it to be under the flight training sub-forum so prospective pilots in training could easily find them... then i was thinking maybe we could move them once they get started. i do like the idea of having them under their prospective forums but also like the idea of them all being in one spot.... not sure what to do there!

 

jmho

 

i see said the blind man :)

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Hey all,

 

thanks to everyone that took the time to respond and posted to the job topics, sorry for my delay in getting back to this, i have been busy with getting our facebook page back up.. it was deleted and we lost everything. If you were on it please sign back up if you want to follow what we're doing closer.

 

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Broomfield-CO/Colorado-Heliops/168764329809710

 

not sure that link will work but we are listed under Colorado Heliops w/o the hyphen.

 

I will post some new job titles on Sunday. This is turning out great and i'm looking forward to learning more about the industry and specific jobs.

 

aloha,

 

dp

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