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The length of a corporate job?

Old 01-20-2013, 06:10 AM
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Default The length of a corporate job?

Question for ya all corporate fellows....( I'm ex-airline, now with a fractional)

I keep on hearing a corporate job last anywhere from 5-7 years, even the "great" corporate jobs. Is this thruth or myth?

Good equipment, diverse flying, good pay, I'd think people wanna stay there

Is it that corporations let people go whenever the stock price/market dips? Do pilots get tired of flying with the same dude day after day? Do the senior pilots grab all the good trips? Any of the above?

Had a conversation with a guy at London's Harrod's aviation FBO. He is typed-rated in the Global Express and Falcon 900/900EX and looking for a "permanent job"

Why would a guy that marketable be looking for a job?
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Old 01-20-2013, 07:01 AM
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the problem (as I see it, this means nothing...) is that corporate jobs are subject to the turns of the business and economic cycles. 7 years sounds about right, between stock market bull markets and bear market cycles. As we learned from watching Enron (an exaggerated example indeed), corporate CEO's are always answering to shareholders and the board. Some (IE Enron) will commit fraud just to keep them happy and keep company bonuses coming.

As has been said many times in aviation, when times get tight, the first thing to go is the plane.

No companies are insulated from changes to their flight departments, look at the Big-3 auto makers. One can argue "why" their flight departments closed, but at the end of the day, their flight departments closed. And a bunch of dudes had to go elsewhere.

GTE Phone company, had a huge corporate flight department, back in the late 80's. Boom, merger with Verizon, severe cutbacks and most planes sold off.

Heck, even the poor guys who fly F-16's have been replaced in some bases by UAV's. One would think that a F-16 pilot, with two wars going on (ok, one now...), and unrest all over the world, would keep his plane....

As far as the guy at London FBO, don't know his situation. Be careful from concluding a guy is "very qualified" merely by his flight experience. It would take all ten of my fingers to count the guys I know who are "very qualified" but complete a-holes and jerks on the road. So why that guy is looking, who knows. You might ask him that, uh, why are you looking ?
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Old 01-20-2013, 07:17 AM
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Thank Satpak77

We had a bunch of people leave Netjets (NJI) for what seemed to be better corporate jobs, and I hear most tried to comeback.

Just wondering wether is the companies laying off in cycles or pilots leaving for different reasons
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:58 AM
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5-7 years is pretty blanket statement. We have guys with over 20; I met two chief pilots with over 30 at their departments. One had been through huge changes, even Chapter 11, without a layoff. They had flown just about every imaginable business jet, the people stayed, the planes got bigger or smaller with cycles of the business. I worked at a NY-based department, years ago, the two pilots had been there over 30 years. Every company is unique; the ones to watch are the nouveaux riches owners, first thing to get is a plane that they really have no use for.

GF
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:18 AM
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There's no formula in my mind. just like going to work for a major airline won't guarantee it's the last place you'll work, getting on with a coveted corporate department may or may not result in a career position.

FWIW, our senior pilot just retired after 25+ years of service. The majority of the department has more than 10 years.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:32 AM
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I agree with flyerjosh, there's no real formula. To me it's luck of the draw, I just finished my eighth year with my employer. This last downturn was particularly brutal on corporate aviation, guys with a ton of tenure at top shelf flight departments found themselves on the street. My department grew from 1 to 3 airplanes over 5 years and, while I never get too comfortable in any situation, I just don't see our operation ever going away. I do agree that the affiliated industry does play a role but even then, there's no panacea.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:44 AM
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I'm the new guy where I work and the next newest guy has been here for 20 plus years with our most "senior" guy being here for 30 plus years. Guys I know at other good companies have been there anywhere from 10-30 years as well.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:55 AM
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indeed no formula or magic number
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Old 01-20-2013, 01:17 PM
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Sounds like this "5-7 years at a corporate job" stuff is an old wives' tale then?

Happy to hear that.
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Old 01-20-2013, 02:51 PM
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For better or worse, guys and gals move around in corporate aviation, hopefully for better offers. Without seniority systems tying one down movement is possible for whatever reason.

GF
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