As one of my favorite guest bloggers, Jeremy Cox is very insightful. His comments regarding business aviation breaking out from our cloistered world to send our message out to the general (and voting) public is timely. Too much has been written in the popular media that sends the negative impression of our industry as elitist, unnecessary, and unsafe. That needs to change.
Guest Post by Jeremy Cox
Vice President at JetBrokers, Inc
I believe the alphabets and especially NBAA has to expand the message of our usefulness and necessity to the core economy of our country.
Many readers of this column might remember the 1976 film: “Network” from which I quoted the famous line above. Whether you do, or you don’t remember, the sentiment carried by this quote is totally appropriate to the aviation industry as it stands today: mired between the love that all of we insiders lavish upon it – the near total diffidence and almost total loathing that the eyes of the general public uses to view our industry – the secretive treatment of our industry by most leading company executives that the use of business aircraft is akin to maintain a mistress on the side –the empty words and visible stands made by self-serving politicians who are all heavy users of our products and services, and yet they rarely publically advocate the competitive advantages that business aviation use opens up for them – and lastly the media; a nasty mob of ill-informed, self opinionated asses who have truly lost the thread when it comes to ‘truth’ and ‘substantiated fact.’
All of the alphabet groups have spent millions of dollars of their member’s money on advertising campaigns that rarely deliver the carefully designed message to the right people. As accurate, as inspiring, and all out ‘feel-good’ as most of these print, internet and the odd but-rare television advertisement might make all of we ‘industry insiders’ believe that the right message is being delivered by our paid advocate organizations; unfortunately a lot of this advertising is aimed at us…We the believers, while there is no coordinated message being communicated to the business executives, the general public and so-called public servants, our politicians. My apologies to our alphabet leaders and communication directors, but like I said at the beginning of this piece: “I’m Mad As Hell, and I’m Not Going To Take This Anymore!”
As an industry, we have all been getting squeezed for some time now. Unfortunately most of us were either too focused or horse-blinkered into not seeing the outside forces gathering against us much sooner than we have today. The Global Financial Crisis (GFC) is the not the root cause of our identity problems, instead it has merely accentuated our public perception issues. No, a large chunk of the pie-chart that depicts our industry problems is due thanks to the secretive way in which we conduct our day-to-day operations. We cater to an elite group of people who choose private aviation, because it is just that: “private.” Continue reading