I really do appreciate this opportunity to offer a few brief words for this, our first Team Member Newsletter for 2019; it also happens to be my first one as the new CEO. This Newsletter covers a number of interesting subjects from Ante-Mortem interviews to the importance of the SAT programme; I would implore you to read through it in slow time and harness from it what you can.
I am acutely aware of the rich history of Kenyon as a Company - in its 112 years and counting, it has attended over 300 major incidents and hundreds of smaller ones. From each you draw lessons; as Robert has often said to me, there are few completely new lessons to learn for those involved in this sector… just the need to re-learn old ones.
From the 2018 Aviation Safety Network Report into airline accidents that covers incidents in detail since 2015, I noted Kenyon has been involved in managing the response to 20% of all deaths in crashes which involved 50 or more fatalities - this rises to 33% when you consider at least two accidents that we know involved airlines without any service provision at all. Germanwings in 2015, EgyptAir and Fly Dubai in 2016 are but three. So, the services we provide and you, as Team Members, help support remain as valid now as they have always been.
In terms of my experience, in my first six months we have dealt with four minor incidents and one major – that one, involving the Air Niugini Boeing 737 accident on the island of Chuck, was interesting for a number of reasons, not just because of the mystery of a missing passenger but dealing with a repatriation in what could be considered very challenging logistical conditions. And never in my life did I ever think I would attend a post-mortem!
In the cycle of any Company, there will always be a need to regenerate to maintain the necessary flexibility, agility and resilience that will enable it to respond at the push of the “call-connect” button. The plan announced by Robert and Brandon last July has been designed to create longevity in developing experienced staff whilst maintaining relevancy and concurrency. We certainly have maintained and garnered further experience where it matters. I am personally investing considerable time in the new generation to allow them to grow and flourish in the Company - this covers Full Time Employees/Staff, Associates and you, our fantastic Team Members. Kathy has refreshed most of the Team Member documentation, including how we board new Team Members, the Handbook and how we support you ahead of, during and after a deployment.
In terms of my own expectations of Team Members, I would expect that you be:
Personable, showing trust and respect to all; encourage two-way discussion in an open and transparent way; view time in any incident as a learning environment; and recognise that no question is ever too stupid;
Prepared, recognising the importance of good situational awareness to ensure rapid decision making when necessary; and
Purposeful, so, should you find yourself in position of authority, you offer clear, unambiguous direction and ensure that your team share the credit for successes but that you take responsibility for failures.
This means you each should: focus on the deliverables with the aspiration to do good, backed with the appropriate capacity and capabilities to follow-through. Each of you brings an experience in a certain field and you must never shy-away from using it or, even better, from sharing that experience.
I will try to end each of my contributions to the Team Member Newsletter with an apposite statement of wisdom; this time I choose: “to be any good, you have to think you’re the best.”