Friday, November 2, 2012

Business aviation reality

I've been a proponent of business jets for years, having owned a turboprop, and later, a CJ1 jet. I was interviewed numerous times in the wake of the public sentiment that business jets are for fat cat, lousy, super-rich business people. I recently sold our company jet, so I feel I can speak critically on the subject more than ever.

Business jets can be wasteful, they can be instruments of lousy fat cats who see themselves as above (no pun intended) everyone else. They can also become an entitlement within a company as employees expect to be taxied about to various locales on a moment's notice. When that happens, a lot of other bad things happen--companies don't plan and leverage the flights, the employees often will leave as soon as the meeting is done and miss out on socializing with the clients, and in general, the jet becomes an excuse for not communicating often enough (i.e. "I'm waiting to fly out and see the client before I discuss such and such issue).

On the other hand, if used properly, you can actually do the math and see how a business jet can transport a team of employees from or to a location not served well by commercial flights. If the trip is planned and thought through, you can move mountains, socialize and return your employees home at a decent hour--preserving your business, clients and employees.

Now that I don't own a jet, I look at business jets as an option that any smart company must consider from time to time. Business aviation should not be vilified or glorified.

Barry LaBov
LaBov & Beyond

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