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Leave a great corporate job for major?

Old 05-20-2015, 08:17 PM
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Default Leave a great corporate job for major?

This is the biggest decision of my life so far. I have a GREAT part 91 corporate job... fly 200hrs/yr, spend less than 40 nights away from home per year, close to home, see my family most nights, nice folks to work with, low stress, although I do have to go to hangar every day even if not flying. Kind of like an office job where I fly occasionally. I don;t know it's long-term future though.

Long story short... I'm now in the pool at a legacy carrier.

Has anyone here left a needle-in-a-haystack, great 91 gig for a major, or vise-verse (left a major for a great corporate)?

I'm super excited about finally getting to a major, but reality is starting to sink in. Airline will be commuting and a lot more flying (i.e, gone more nights). Where I am now is more day-to-day work but home just about every night. If I let the major go, I will probably regret it someday. Hmmm... has anyone switched (either way) and regretted it (or not regretted it)? just curious. Thanks
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:26 PM
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Default Leave a great 91 job for major?

I also posted this over on the "Majors" forum, so my apologies if you see it twice.

This is the biggest decision of my life so far. I have a GREAT part 91 corporate job... fly 200hrs/yr, spend less than 40 nights away from home per year, close to home, see my family most nights, nice folks to work with, low stress, although I do have to go to hangar every day even if not flying. Kind of like an office job where I fly occasionally. I don;t know it's long-term future though.

Long story short... I'm now in the pool at a legacy carrier.

Has anyone here left a needle-in-a-haystack, great 91 gig for a major, or vise-verse (left a major for a great corporate)?

I'm super excited about finally getting to a major, but reality is starting to sink in. Airline will be commuting and a lot more flying (i.e, gone more nights). Where I am now is more day-to-day work but home just about every night. If I let the major go, I will probably regret it someday. Hmmm... has anyone switched (either way) and regretted it (or not regretted it)? just curious. Thanks
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:37 PM
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How big/well known is this department? If it has a long standing history and seems likely to stick around then you have some thinking to do. But if not, IMO the major may be the better option. Eg, if I was a G5 guy at McDonalds or Coca Cola then I'd feel comfortable to stay. But if you are doing it for an owner-operator then I wouldn't put my eggs in one basket for that.
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:39 PM
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What is more likely to be around in 10 years...DAL or your biz jet gig? If you can bet your career on the biz jet then stay...if not go to the big leagues while the wave is just starting.
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:35 PM
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Originally Posted by steepturn View Post
I don;t know it's long-term future though
There is your key. Just how stable is it? A lot of times 91 gigs are here today gone tomorrow.

Lots of things to consider but it will be a lifestyle change for sure if you go the 121 route.
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:40 PM
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Originally Posted by steepturn View Post
This is the biggest decision of my life so far. I have a GREAT part 91 corporate job... fly 200hrs/yr, spend less than 40 nights away from home per year, close to home, see my family most nights, nice folks to work with, low stress, although I do have to go to hangar every day even if not flying. Kind of like an office job where I fly occasionally. I don;t know it's long-term future though.

Long story short... I'm now in the pool at a legacy carrier.

Has anyone here left a needle-in-a-haystack, great 91 gig for a major, or vise-verse (left a major for a great corporate)?

I'm super excited about finally getting to a major, but reality is starting to sink in. Airline will be commuting and a lot more flying (i.e, gone more nights). Where I am now is more day-to-day work but home just about every night. If I let the major go, I will probably regret it someday. Hmmm... has anyone switched (either way) and regretted it (or not regretted it)? just curious. Thanks
Tough decision. I've moved between a Fortune 50 flight department and major airlines and I've enjoyed both types of flying equally well. The flying is very different and there are advantages and disadvantages to both. For instance, I am now a senior FO at a major airline and we all suffer per diem instead of the expense account. A first-world problem I know, but the advantage goes to the corporate flight department on that one. Honestly, the decision to stay or go will be very personal to you and your situation. I have found that those who had the goal of flying at the majors since they were student pilots were the right people to move on from corporate and go try the majors. Those that were never really wrapped up in the idea of flying for one type of outfit or another, but just enjoyed flying no matter where they were, had an easier time staying put in corporate. Some final real considerations no matter which major you are looking at: you will likely be taking a pay cut initially, you may never catch your corporate flying earnings and your schedule will be exceptionally hectic versus where you are now. Good Luck!
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:45 PM
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The pay and retirement packages are huge. In the long term, the legacies are the way to go. You may have to commute and spend more time away, but the overall package at the big boys is hard to fault. Lots of unknowns, but even f/o's crack 6 figures in two or three years.
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:55 PM
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Thanks for the input. It's not a big flight department, but it's a big parent company. The owner-operator is getting way up in years. The company will likely continue but don't know who the next owner will be or future of the flight department.

Yes, it would be a healthy pay cut first year at the airline


I did a fair amount of time at the regionals before this gig, so I'm asking myself if I'm ready to go back to commuting and more time in hotels
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Old 05-21-2015, 12:03 AM
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I left a Fortune 500 corporate flight department two years ago to go to the majors. Most of the time I feel as though it was the right thing to do. The politics at play in corporate were incompatible with the size of my mouth...

I am back to making what I made there already (although they have been given substantial increases since I left that leave me in the dust). I have significantly more control over my schedule except on the holidays. I fly more now but work less. I miss corporate flying sometimes but I still say this was the right move for me and one that I should have made much sooner.
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Old 05-21-2015, 04:18 AM
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Originally Posted by steepturn View Post
This is the biggest decision of my life so far. I have a GREAT part 91 corporate job... fly 200hrs/yr, spend less than 40 nights away from home per year, close to home, see my family most nights, nice folks to work with, low stress, although I do have to go to hangar every day even if not flying. Kind of like an office job where I fly occasionally. I don;t know it's long-term future though.

Long story short... I'm now in the pool at a legacy carrier.

Has anyone here left a needle-in-a-haystack, great 91 gig for a major, or vise-verse (left a major for a great corporate)?

I'm super excited about finally getting to a major, but reality is starting to sink in. Airline will be commuting and a lot more flying (i.e, gone more nights). Where I am now is more day-to-day work but home just about every night. If I let the major go, I will probably regret it someday. Hmmm... has anyone switched (either way) and regretted it (or not regretted it)? just curious. Thanks
I know it feels like a tough call, but it's really not. Here's why:

1. The pilot shortage is hitting everyone.
2. If you say no to this major, you might be able to get hired later if you change your mind, but at a huge drop in seniority given the current hiring plans of the majors.
3. If you later want to leave the major and go back to the corporate world, you'll be able to do so without starting over at the bottom given your experience.
4. The majors give you the time off (as in no hangar duty) to have a side gig and supplement your income.
5. You might not be home every night at the majors, but your home time will be 100% home time...no hangar duty.
6. Hiring on now is almost a guarantee of never being furloughed. Out of seniority furloughs happen all the time in the corporate world.

Hope this helps, and best of luck to you.

Carl
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