If you want to become a pilot, then you are probably wondering what skills, qualifications and mindset you need to succeed.
Being a pilot is not just about controlling and flying a plane. It is also about being analytical, calm, and being knowledgeable about all safety and emergency protocols at all times.
This is why most pilots need extensive training and examination before being able to operate airline planes. If this is something you want to do, then you will need to know exactly what skills and qualities make a good pilot
What skills do you need to be a good pilot?
To be a good pilot, you will need a lot of core professional skills in order to succeed. For instance, communication is a key skill that is essential for pilots.
Pilots will need to communicate with the cabin crew, passengers, with air traffic controllers, and other aircrafts when operating the plane, for safety and instructional reasons.
It is also essential that a pilot can understand and undertake instruction from air traffic control, and listen to advice, or alter the course of action if necessary. In addition, communication skills are nothing without interpersonal skills, as pilots will need to cooperate and communicate with the rest of the crew for a smooth and safe journey.
On a similar note, team working skills are very important for aircraft crew. Pilots may also need to work in conjunction with multiple other pilots on board long haul flights, and so they will need to coordinate and work together effectively.
Pilots will also need to be skilled with technical information and devices, as they are in charge of numerous controls and operations on board the aircraft. They will also require numerical, mathematical, analytical and technical skills in order to perform arithmetic calculations, navigate the aircraft, monitor the engines, and any systems during the flight.
However, pilots will have to also think outside the box in some situations, and be problem solvers at the same time! Pilots have to make quick decisions, whilst also taking into account numerous contributing factors that can be dangerous for the flight, aircraft and passengers, and so they will need to be confident, calm, and quick thinking.
One of the most important skills that pilots will need, is situational awareness. This means that you are aware and in control of everything around you. This includes the aircraft, controls, flight conditions, other aircrafts, weather, terrains, geographical position, and systems.
They will also need to be aware of the speed, altitude, heading, position and many other factors about the aircraft itself at all times, and remain focused.
What Type of Person Makes a Good Pilot
To make an excellent pilot, it is not just about the skills you have, it is also about the type of person that you are. There are a few key personality traits that you will need to have in order to succeed as a pilot.
For instance, a highly important trait that you need to have is decisiveness, and thinking quickly on the spot. Operating a plane means that there is a lot of pressure, and anything can go wrong. As the pilot, you would have to have quick problem solving skills, and you would need to act fast in an emergency or difficult situation.
In addition to this, you have to keep a calm, cool demeanor, even in the state of an emergency. As the pilot, you are the leader of the flight, and everyone will look to you for instruction. You cannot panic, and you must lead by example, which is why good leadership is a valuable skill and personality trait that you will also need.
You will also need to follow rules and regulations very carefully as set out by governing bodies and authoritative sources. These are there for safety reasons and to protect both the crew and all of the passengers. However, acting as pilot means that you have to make life or death decisions if there is an incident.
Sometimes, this may mean breaking company policies and procedures if it means safety is the priority. That being said, sticking to the rules and not breaking them unless entirely necessary is the best way to be.
Another personality trait that will benefit a pilot is a practical, linear mind. You would need to be more analytical than theoretical and creative, with a good knowledge of technical operations and information.
This is largely due to the fact that you would have to complete safety checks, technical tests and examine the condition of the aircraft before flying. You would also need to ensure that the aircraft is below the weight limit, is balanced, and with enough fuel supply in accordance to the distance.
Not only this, but the weather conditions may also need to be considered, along with any other obstacles or obstructions that may affect the flight.