It Is All About The Cinnamon: Linking Military Aviation Culture to Quality in Business

Imagine yourself finding a consistent, repeating error/mistake in a supplier’s product or service delivery. Wouldn’t that make you think about what else they are doing wrong and charging you for? Wouldn’t you start to consider other suppliers no matter how inconvenient that might be. Now think about your own customers. Do they think that about you? I spent the better part of my adult life as a military aviator; 20 years as a search and rescue pilot for the United States Coast Guard. In 2008 I retired and went into consulting for both the commercial and public sectors. I learned a lot over the years especially as an aviator and as a consultant. One lesson, in particular, sticks out in my mind

Aviate, Navigate, Communicate….

As a retired Coast Guard aviator, early in our training, pilots learn that during an emergency they must fly the aircraft first. In fact, there’s a saying that goes: aviate, navigate, and then communicate. The equivalent to this also applies in the business world. In a crisis, first deal with the immediate issues that threaten the very survival of the organization. Leaders must work decisively through the present challenges whether it is a poor earnings forecast or a persistent cyber-attack that results in the release of valuable information. Leadership first has to deal with the close-in sharks and alligators that threaten the business. Once the immediate threat is resolved and some control

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