Friday, April 14, 2017
Confidence - the double-edged sword!


You are too confident, you will crash!


Why do pilots crash?

Pilots do not crash aircraft because they are over-confident. They crash aircraft because their actions stray away from their training. An over-confident pilot believes he is above the quality markers of his peers. They believe their training was a necessary evil they needed to tick a box; to get to their current amazing position. That training can now be left behind because it is for novices. That is when the accident happens; because that training is no longer applicable to them.

A professional pilot thinks differently. They will use that training as the framework that they can rely on, to help you through future situations. They use it to develop behaviours and processes that always keep them safe. Mantras that are learned in proper training will stick in your mind forever. When we undergo effective training, with instructors we respect, we place their opinions and thought processes into our long-term memory. It is only later that those memories are recalled with ease and accidents are averted.

Back to confidence. Nobody is suggesting that you need to be over-confident. However, there is a type of self-belief which is much more dangerous, and that is under-confidence. Many more accidents happen due to inaction or late decision-making than happen because of over-confidence. Flying has been described as a combination of skill and the purest application of common sense. If you don't combine the 2 you can never be described as a professional pilot. If you have little confidence you cannot make timely interventions or you may never have the ability to say no.

How do we describe suitable confidence? Well let's look at how a good instructor builds it.

Applied Knowledge

The first thing we do in training is build your applied knowledge. At Flyby Technology we do that with superior courseware content, delivered by an expert instructor. If you can understand and remember the regulations then you will be confident in their application. You will also be able to exploit those situations where you can fly safely within the rules. If you understand ALL of your aircraft modes then you will not be surprised by an aircraft not performing as you expect; you will have confidence in your operation of the aircraft. If you know your procedures, then you can maintain awareness of those circumstances that are changing around you. In short, knowing your stuff makes you a confident pilot. Good training helps you know your stuff......Simple!

Flight Path Management

If you have confidence in your handling then you will be able to put the aircraft where it needs to be. You will have quicker reactions and more positive control inputs. All of this will make you a more confident and safer pilot. If you have difficulty flying banked coordinated turns in degraded modes, then when an incident occurs, that drops you into that situation, you will be under-confident......And dangerous! Your training provider must be able to get you to a high standard in non-GPS flying. Good training from a skilled instructor will certainly help to achieve that quickly. We have no idea when these incidents will occur so it makes sense to be properly trained from day one.

Decision Making

Your course should include different types of decision making. It should also cover how to gather the right information and it should teach you how to set the right environment so that information is freely given and acquired. If you have confidence in your ability to effect a great outcome, then your confidence will be high. So will the team's confidence in you.

Effective Training

A lot of pilots see training as a means to an end. A necessary evil that gets them to that Permission from the CAA. They choose the lowest cost training, perhaps with some online elements to cut down the time away from work. Immediately they are putting themselves at a disadvantage. The important thing is not getting the Permission, it is why you are getting it. That is to fly drones safely, professionally and with confidence. If you cannot do that at the end of your training you will be under-confident. That will mean you will possibly not be in business in a year or 2.

Good training is worth the extra few pounds. You might find the price of cheap training is much higher later.

Have confidence in your training, have confidence in your flying...

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