Training the whole pilot

Published on April 25, 2022

What makes a good pilot? Is it solely someone’s ability to manage an aircraft? It is a common misconception that this is the case!

The International Civil Aviation Organisation collated data from pilots all over the world on what they believe makes a good pilot, their findings showed that the technical flying element only formed a small part of what experienced pilots, believed was needed to be a success. When pilots were asked what makes a good crew member, phrases that came up consistently were “assertive, team player, professional, calm, approachable, listens well, knowledgeable, good operator, open-minded”.

EASA and the UK CAA formalised these traits as ‘behavioural indicators’ and created the 9 core competencies required to make a strong pilot, to help evaluate and monitor a pilots’ overall skillset. Pilot core competencies are becoming an industry wide standard which airline recruitment teams use to determine whether an individual is suitable for a Captain or First Officer role.

The core competencies are as follows –

  • Situational Awareness
  • Leadership and Teamwork
  • Effective Communication
  • Workload Management
  • Problem Solving and Decision Making
  • Knowledge and Application of Procedures
  • Professional Standards
  • Aircraft Management – Automation
  • Aircraft Management – Manual Control


The two Aircraft Management competencies in bold can be taught by any flight school, this is fundamentally how to fly an aircraft. Leading Edge Aviation believe in training the whole pilot, to provide a learning environment for future captains.

From day one our training focuses on embedding those competencies in everything we do, with our Skills Assessment feedback providing areas of strength and areas for improvement based around these competencies. Embedded in Ground School alongside the technical learning is teaching of the non-technical skills, essential to excel as a successful member of any flight deck. Utilising the 2020 ATPL syllabus which has 100 KSA integrated in to it’s teaching (Knowledge, Skills & Attitudes), the aim is to consolidate our students’ understanding of the different subjects but at the same time in line with the core competencies. EASA state this modernised theoretical knowledge training will contribute to the overall enhancement of pilots’ core competencies and their ability to make informed decisions.

Progressing on to the flying stage with these newly honed skills (both technical and non-technical), the learning doesn’t stop there. The core competencies are blended into our flight training syllabus, helping our students prepare for roles in commercial flight decks. Our industry-leading training is designed to be commercially focused from day one, with the complete syllabus taking in to account Aircraft Management, the non-technical core competencies and commercially focused flying – equipping future pilots to operate successfully in a multi-crew environment.

So when people ask us what makes a good pilot, the answer is someone who can manage the aircraft effectively, but at the same time demonstrate the other core competencies! Leading Edge Aviation believe in training the whole pilot, a pilot who can cope well in any situation given to them, to safely and effectively manage an aircraft in all conditions.

 

Why not start your flight training journey? Click here to book your Skills Assessment today!

 

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