Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
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By Miscellaneous
#1843351
Those continuing to decry the school based on a single post are likely to have a very different view if they were the business owner.

How people can post saying they find it acceptable for a thread to be started that results in a business being slated by numerous pilots defies logic.

Just like there are good and bad businesses there are, generically, good and bad customers. Not all customers are desirable for a business. Far from it. A key business skill is to be able to let those go and and lose the distraction, focussing on those beneficial to the business. To suggest otherwise is demonstrating extreme naivety. :wink:
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By MattL
#1843354
It’s 2021 not 1971. Any business that doesn’t actively monitor and manage / engage with key social media and online feeds relative to its business sector has to accept the good, bad and ugly will be said about it.
riverrock, Ibra, Rjk983 liked this
By IMCR
#1843356
Miscellaneous wrote:Those continuing to decry the school based on a single post are likely to have a very different view if they were the business owner.

How people can post saying they find it acceptable for a thread to be started that results in a business being slated by numerous pilots defies logic.

Just like there are good and bad businesses there are, generically, good and bad customers. Not all customers are desirable for a business. Far from it. A key business skill is to be able to let those go and and lose the distraction, focussing on those beneficial to the business. To suggest otherwise is demonstrating extreme naivety. :wink:


Businesses get slated by customers every day. A business has no special status, and will probably not last long if it thinks it does. Of course the perception of the parties will equally determine it is, and isn't justified. The fact it has been slated usually means rightly or wrongly the customer is not convinced he has had the experience to which he felt entitled. Indeed a skill is to decide which customers to let go, as much as for customers to decide which businesses don’t deserve their customer. It’s always been the way.
riverrock, A4 Pacific liked this
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By MichaelP
#1843364
You could join ‘Trust Pilot’ to rate aviation businesses.

It only takes one person to give a customer a bad experience...
The answer to this is to control the culture within your business. Cultural control comes from the top.

Majority vs minority.
As long as less than optimal experiences are in the minority we’ll be okay.

Trouble is that often there are monopolies on airfields at distances that prevent competition.

I’ll relate my experience of the Tiger Club over thirty years ago, this is not the Tiger Club of now.

As a Tiger Club member (1977 to 1988) I came across a minority of people with poor hospitality skills, and high prima donna skills.
This lead to friction with me, and I won most times.
The majority of Tiger Club members were decent friendly individuals whose intent was pure passion with a strong desire to keep to the Tiger Club Charter, to promote light aviation.
Example: A Jodel arrives from Switzerland, or an RF4 arrives from Belgium... It would be left outside, and the crew dumped at best...
But I was there much of the time, I’d arrive on Friday evening and stay until Monday morning before going back to work.
On good weather mornings, I’d empty the hangar of fourteen aeroplanes, fuel and oil them, and line them up on the grass.
When visitors arrived I’d look after them.
Michael J complained, “...what was that Swiss Jodel doing in his hangar?” I’d explain how when I was in Switzerland they put the Tiger Club Jodel I was flying in their hangar and they would look after me. It was important that we return the hospitality we received elsewhere by providing the same to who-ever cared to visit us.
I received the Chairman’s Medallion for services to the Tiger Club.
I brought in new members and did my bit to revitalise the club.

Then the Chairman changed... I recently had to apply my point of view to this man’s obituary.
The new Chairman was not a regular flyer of Tiger Club aeroplanes, he owned his own.
He sent me a letter to tell me to desist from bringing new members into the club, they had decided to make the Tiger Club “exclusive”.
This was offensive and against the Tiger Club Charter.

You change the culture at the top, and everything else will change.

The Tiger Club’s future was to end at Redhill with a hugely costly court case with the aerodrome’s operators. Conflict vs detente.

As for me I had Condors to supply 100 hour tailwheel pilots to the Tiger Club. I removed all restrictions, and Michael J would refuel my aeroplanes again and again while the Tiger Club aeroplanes sat on the grass, or in the hangar.

I have had my own flying club, I have worked at a few schools, I have set up a school myself.
Being hospitable has brought many customers to the doors of the places I have worked.
So I make judgements on the places I go, and here in England I have had to walk away from a few with a bad taste.

Last weekend I was at Leicester Aero Club, it was a good welcome, a friendly atmosphere, and a place I would recommend.
Popham is always a good place to go.
But another airport in my travels is no longer a place I want to be. There are some prima donnas, the café is closed, under new management, and in renovation, (will the new one be as good as it was with the last crew?). I know there are good people there too, but at the moment it’s not a place I need to be.
Places change, good to bad to good, it all depends on the people who create the culture.
oldbiggincfi, A4 Pacific, JAFO and 1 others liked this
By TopCat
#1843371
lobstaboy wrote:I don't think any of us should ignore advice that is properly explained and comes from a reliable source

I say again, I agree. But no one is suggesting that they should ignore such advice.

the OP was told he couldn't fly without a proper explanation and without the opportunity to learn from it. That's what all the fuss is about.

Indeed. Justified fuss - I think we're agreeing, in fact.

The point is, the OP wasn't given advice that was properly explained, or from an obviously reliable source, (so obviously he couldn't ignore it) hence his perfectly justified original question.

The reality is that in most light trainers, 10 gusting 15 straight down the runway is not even remotely difficult for pilots that have been properly trained. So if authorisation for such flights is routinely refused, it raises all sorts of questions about the nature of the training that led to such conditions being deemed unsafe, and the judgements of those responsible for the authorisation.

Assuming we've had enough of the whole story to draw that conclusion, which for all I know, we haven't.
lobstaboy, IMCR, Rob P and 1 others liked this
By flyingearly
#1843376
Thank you for all your thoughts and responses on this, both supportive and critical. I don't wish to pour any more fuel on the fire; I'm waiting to hear back from the school and have suggested a call to have a constructive discussion on this and hopefully put it to bed.

The only thing I wanted to say here is to pick up on one post particularly, from @riverrock - which is the only one I've seen that has made the following point.

Whatever you think of social media, internet forums etc, this is the ONLY place I have (currently) that I can immediately turn to for advice, conversation, brainstorming, debate or to pick brains, where I can easily get a range of opinions and build my knowledge and learning. I imagine that for most new pilots, they would say exactly the same.

It is easy to say 'speak to your school', but the premise of my OP was to get advice before I did so, to make sure I could have an informed discussion. There are very few places for people in my situation to turn otherwise. I have no 'mates' who fly, no friends at the airfield - indeed, the only person I know in general aviation IS my instructor and a few people running the school.

Yes, I have recently joined the LAA, but as yet in-person events aren't happening. There isn't much of a social scene at the airfields I fly from, or at least not that I have been able to get involved in. When Covid allows social events to kick off, I will be there.

But until then, please just consider that turning to forums like this is not an incendiary act to try and point fingers, slate organisations or put people on trial. It's a genuine attempt to get advice which - for the most part - tends to be helpful, volunteered freely and is backed by a collective many years (centuries?!) of experience! I have found my time on here to be immensely valuable and it is why I almost treat the forums as a sounding board, as I had done in this case.

Perhaps what is needed is some sort of new pilot mentor network that isn't on full view like a public forum, but still enables someone like me to ask the weird, wonderful (and awkward!) questions of those much more experienced, without the risk of causing problems if those questions lead others down a track that wasn't intended, accidentally. If anything like this exists, or if anyone wishes to volunteer to be my buddy, I would bite their hands off!
Rob P, PeteSpencer, A4 Pacific and 17 others liked this
By A4 Pacific
#1843393
flyingearly

That was a top post that goes right to the heart of the issue here. As I read it, all you were doing was asking for advice before speaking to the school, without ever identifying your provider. Perfectly reasonable as far as I’m concerned.

You have received ‘input’ from pilots prepared to support your initial frustration, and from others telling you to wind your neck in. That’s life. It’s for you to sift the wheat from the chaff and reach an outcome you are happy with.

All I would reiterate is, there may be more that you have experienced or have knowledge of, that might encourage you to take stock of your current situation? Perhaps the latest event is just the tip of an iceberg? Only you can tell.

I’d like to make a general point that is quite likely not necessarily relevant to this specific discussion.

Many newcomers to GA are frequently surprised to find it stuffed full of cowboys, charlatans and bullies! Perhaps that’s due to perceived ‘status’, the romance of flying, or the fact large sums of money are often at stake. However amongst all that are some absolute heroes, and organisations with the very highest standards. But it’s not always easy to tell which is which!

The first category rely on a constant influx of innocent and naive newcomers to fleece. Who’s hearts sink when they discover everyone around them knew the track records of individuals and organisations yet kept their traps shut! Those organisations definitely don’t want anyone asking (or advertising!) ‘awkward’ questions!

In those situations names absolutely should be named, because in the worst cases lives can be lost. But they aren’t and they are!

In few areas is the phrase ‘Caveat Emptor’ more appropriate than in GA.

There are many, many providers. Be sure to pick one of the best ones! Do that by educating yourself, shopping around and asking every question you can possibly think of. :thumright:
Last edited by A4 Pacific on Wed Apr 28, 2021 10:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
JAFO, Rob P, Crash one and 1 others liked this
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By foxmoth
#1843397
Bill McCarthy wrote:Right from the start we only had one side of the story, as always


It is an open Forum, the other parties would have been more than welcome to give their side!
townleyc liked this
By Crash one
#1843400
Miscellaneous wrote:Those continuing to decry the school based on a single post are likely to have a very different view if they were the business owner.

How people can post saying they find it acceptable for a thread to be started that results in a business being slated by numerous pilots defies logic.

Just like there are good and bad businesses there are, generically, good and bad customers. Not all customers are desirable for a business. Far from it. A key business skill is to be able to let those go and and lose the distraction, focussing on those beneficial to the business. To suggest otherwise is demonstrating extreme naivety. :wink:



The business is there to serve their own interests by serving the customer to the customer’s satisfaction.
Otherwise it’s called a rip off/scam or some other means of making money without doing anything.
The OP did not intend the business to be slated, no names were mentioned and no one had a clue where the business was, until someone put their big foot in it and pointed people in the right direction.
Whether or not good business practice was being followed was not the issue. A simple question was asked. “What is normal business practice in this case”. In order that the OP could decide whether or not he was being treated normally.
This has nothing to with good or bad customers.
Anyway, the customer is King, whether he is right or wrong!
JAFO, Plan_B liked this
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By Miscellaneous
#1843402
Maybe had numerous forumites not taken @flyingearly's post literally and attacked the school he would not have been put in this unfortunate awkward position?

@flyingearly best of luck when you speak to them. Do come back and let us know how you get on. :thumright:

@Crash one if you think and act according to:
Anyway, the customer is King, whether he is right or wrong!

you wouldn't last long in business. You'd be such a busy fool running after 'problem' customers the service to your good customers would suffer.
Flyin'Dutch' liked this
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By Paul_Sengupta
#1843404
patowalker wrote:
Flyin'Dutch' wrote:This chap has his licence and was wanting to hire an aeroplane, innit?


Yes, but the rental of permit to fly aircraft flown on a NPPL does not have the same track record as Part 21 aircraft flown on a PPL, so it is not surprising that rental conditions sometimes differ. I believe insurance rates reflect this, and explains the relatively high cost of renting aircraft that are cheaper to operate than one with a CofA..


Yes Frank, you should know that microlight pilots are reckless mavericks who cannot be trusted to be let out on their own, and that C42s aren't real aeroplanes like the ones we fly and shouldn't be flown anywhere near their published limits!

(tongue firmly in cheek for those who don't realise!)

Anyway, back to what I was saying about the old club at Cardiff. They quickly found that signing people out for every flight was unworkable and quietly dropped the requirement.
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