The future of attracting and retaining top talent in business aviation


Desiree Perez, CEO and founder of the Aviation Leadership Academy, discusses recruitment in the business aviation industry and what more needs to be done to lure talented potential.

Our marketplace is changing quickly. Not only is this driven by its ever-changing demands and the new generations that are entering the workforce, but it also means that we will see a change in our talent landscape and how we continue to keep our employees engaged.

Traditionally, the business aviation industry has not had any problems attracting passionate employees that are willing and eager to grow with a company, but times are changing. Not only is technology and a lean organization becoming more important, but also giving employees the room to experiment, bring in their ideas and be heard are crucial to attracting and retaining top talent.

Today, 50% of our workforce comprises emerging leaders and this is forecasted to rise to 75% by 2020. The numbers show clearly that our organizational cultures are bound to change.

So, what does this exactly mean for your organizations and you? How can you adjust your organization to attract and retain top talent in the future?

Here are four things to consider when preparing your team today for the changes coming tomorrow:

1. Personal development is more important than ever. The next generation of leaders is looking to have not only a good work-life balance but also career progression and personal development. They appreciate ongoing feedback paired with continuous leadership development and the opportunity to attain sound technical knowledge.

2. Technology is key: 41% of the millennial workforce prefers to communicate electronically and use advanced technology in the workplace, and the business aviation industry has done a lot of work developing technology over the past few years. How can you continue this development in your organization?

3. Diversity and inclusion should always be a priority. Only 28% feel that there is real diversity and inclusion at the workplace. One reason for this is that emerging leaders grew up with the concept of diversity and inclusion – traveling, eating international foods and having many friends across the world on Facebook, paired with the experience of less steep hierarchies, boosts this perspective. To this generation, diversity and inclusion mean not only different cultures but also diverse backgrounds, ways of thinking and knowledge, and the ability to bring all of this together provides a potpourri of ideas and input from which to draw that can create a competitive advantage in the marketplace.

4. How much room are you giving your employees to be creative? For millennials, a big part of engagement is being able to be creative, enabling them to challenge the status quo and bring their ideas to the table. While we have a significant number of rules and regulations in our industry, how do you enable a creative work environment for your employees?

Completing these steps can seem overwhelming and a lot of work, especially in the business aviation environment where change is the only constant and competing priorities are our daily challenge.

Using these strategies to prepare for the change in the talent landscape will enable us to better understand our organizational and leadership goals. This will craft the key to success in creating a highly engaged and diverse workforce.


Desiree Perez has an extensive business aviation background and now is an international leadership and career development coach, working with leaders and emerging leaders on strengthening their leadership skills and successfully navigating generational and cultural differences so that they can maximize profit and performance.


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