Sudden changes in your job and how to deal with them

By Petter Hornfeldt | December 21, 2018

Hi my friends!

Sometimes circumstances in this business changes very quickly. This is one of those things that you will have to be prepared for if you are looking to join the airline world.

During my 15 years in this business the industry has gone up and down, airlines have come and gone and bases have opened and closed. The business is famous for its volatility and unpredictability where everything from oil prices to terrorism can change the face of the industry over night.

Several of my colleagues and friends have changed company, country and continent multiple times, thats just the way this industry works.

Humans are not designed to appreciate change. We tend to feel most at ease when we have stability and predictability around us. Pilots are no exception from this and the older we become, the more our family becomes the most important beacon in our life.

I very rarely touch on the negative aspects of being a pilot but this potential uncertainty can be one of those.

As always in this life, the circumstances that you are faced with are always multi faceted and very few things are ONLY positive or negative. It will be up to you as an individual to choose how you look at circumstances that are outside of your direct control.

One of the most important reasons that I am doing my work with “Mentour Pilot” and “Mentour 360” is to give people an insight into the life of ONE airline pilot and to give you the benefits of the experience that I have gained over my 15 years inside this unique and constantly changing machine that the airline business is.

I am always open with the fact that what I tell you is only MY view of how things are and you will have to form your own opinion about this life when you are inside of it yourself.

Due to the unpredictability of the industry and importance that predictability will inevitably have on your life I always advice people to try to choose an airline (If you have a choice) that have stable economy and good future prospects. The reason for this is that small political problems inside an airline are much less importance than the survival of the airline and your job with it. If you work for a profitable airline you will have a much higher chance of predicting your future once you have settled somewhere. Changes can still happen but they are less likely to completely disrupt your life which might be the case if your employer would suddenly go bankrupt after you have moved to a different country to work for them.

So, why am I telling you all this? Well, the reason is that I am in the middle of such a change right now. The base that I am working from and where I have my family, is operating on a very seasonal schedule and due to a large downsizing over the winter months I will have to operate out of different bases over the winter.

This will mean longer time away from my family and more time spent on airports looking for commuting options. (Possibility for coffee meet-ups:)

This is obviously not ideal but I am choosing to see this as an opportunity to get to know more new people, get new experiences and grow.

I know that the decision to downsize over the winter is one of those decisions that I would have made myself if I was in a managerial position (Having your own company changes your viewpoint slightly).

My employer have been forthcoming with trying to find a workable way of doing this over the winter and I am happy with the way this will work.

As I said before, I have learnt that these types of changes are an unfortunate part of the otherwise fabulous line of business I have chosen.

I am actively choosing to look at this positively because I know that thinking like that will make my life much more enjoyable and that doing the opposite will potentially have a very negative impact on my life quality.

Remember my friends; YOU are the masters of your own life. YOU choose if you are a victim of circumstaces or if you can play these same circumstances to work in your advantage. Never forget that!


  • Peter H Bewers

    Can you comment on my suggestion of a Rear / or central Fuel Tank on the Boeing 737 ‘ Max ‘ to improve its stability and Range to compete with the Airbus A-321 EX L R. Thank You.

  • Peter H Bewers

    Thank you for being so honest with me , I always have loved flying , and although I had a Career in the Motor Trade as my Father owned Garages , Aircaft is my first love, when I see People like you with yoiur 4/5 stripe uniform Captains post we , The Public , do not realize that Flying can be a seasonable job , and with that goes insecurity . I did work part time for an Airline here in Jersey a Southend on Sea based Company , that grew and grew whilst I worked for it , started with really old Planes , then got Vickers Viscounts 700,s then 12 Vickers Viscount 806,s then B.A.C. 1-11 s Tridents and then BUST , due to over expansion. I was heart broken, as I loved the Company, If I look at the Airlines that I knew, British Eagle, British Midland, Laker Airways, British United, British Caledonian, Dan Air London , plus a few others , they have all gone bust , or been taken over !

  • Time away from family and friends (at home) is certainly a factor to consider. I will never forget the time my father was disciplining my sisters and me for doing something youngsters typically do (too much noise, or running in the house, normal kid stuff) and “our” German Shepherd got between dad and us and growled! 🙂

    I guess he was spending too much time away since ‘our’ dog did not recognize him as a family ‘member’. At the time, he was based out of Miami, FL, USA while the family was near Dallas, TX.

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