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Old 23rd Feb 2010, 19:33
  #26 (permalink)  
balance
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: australia
Posts: 278
Anthill, I really suspect that you are taking this authority issue too far, and I am getting some vibes that you are a little underconfident in your position as a Captain, if indeed you are.

Yes, there are rules and regulations which support your position. A good leader though, doesn't need them. He or she does so by example and good leadership and management. If you have to resort to quoting law then you have lost the battle.

As a Captain, I have flown with FO's who are undoubtetly better pilots than I. As an FO, I have flown with Captains who are worse pilots than I. So what? I don't care as long as the punters get from point A to point B safely and comfortably. If we, as operating crew, can get them there whilst we are comfortable in our little office, then we have done a great job.

An FO is there to support the process of making decisions, not to be a decision maker in themselves. The Captain, under law, is the only decision maker on the aircraft. Some crew may feel a sense of entilement to make decisions and this should be permited on the FOs sector to the degree that the Captain agrees with that decision as being safe, efficient and lawful.
Wrong, wrong, wrong. You have missed the point of the thread that centaurus started. Sorry fella, but I want any FO who flies with me to make decisions for themselves. The FO flying with the Axe Man of Apia made a decision, and it likely saved the aircraft. FO's MUST make decisions for themselves, and if they don't then they have no right to be sitting in a cockpit. They must be encouraged, guided, trusted, mentored and respected. One day, a FO will likely pull me out of the sh1t, and I will owe him or her big time. Anthill, perhaps you should remember this.

If you as a Captain state that an FO can only make the decisions that you allow him too, then you are no better than the Captain who had the Axe held to him, and you have completely missed the point of good CRM.

Some instances where I have steeped the "gradient of authority to vertical include:
An FO who thought that is safe to proceed with the WX radar in AUTO and refused to deviate around a CB that I had detected by varying the gain and tilt.
An FO who tried to continue a 'visual' approach when lawful visibility was lost.
An FO who could not self-separate from traffic OCTA and was setting us up for a TCAS RA..
On the otherhand, there are instances wher in the name of crew cohesion, I did not assert my view of what was the most safe/efficient plan of action and had to settle on a second best 'plan B'-all because the FO lacked the technical knowledge to understand that what I was proposing was safe, efficient and lawful. Because the FO was lacking in these areas, effieciency was compromised, however safety was not. FO was less than pleased when I told him to have a closer read of his books.


Quote:
Centaurus' post was a good one, however I too felt overtones of "superiority" as a Captain creeping though.

Not sure what you mean by this. I Think that Centaurus' view was quite balenced. Maybe I'm just an old pr!ck.

I'm not sure how you expect that you can vary the cockpit gradient. The FO is what he is, and you are what you are. I'm guessing that you suggest that you vary your tone, and whilst you might think that this varies the gradient, it most likely doesn't, it just irks the other pilot.

This is where respect and management comes into play. Instead of standing your ground and demanding that your FO comply with your requirements, as you imply, how about skillfully guiding your "mate" to what you believe to be the best outcome? This is good leadership, not just making demands.

The most surprising part of your post was this:

FO was less than pleased when I told him to have a closer read of his books.
I'm not surprised at the FO's reaction. If I were the FO I'd likely politely tell you where you could gracefully bend over and place the books! Are you a training Captain? Do you have the right to make a judgement? Did you politely discuss the issues first? Did you get out the books ytourself and show him or her with a degree of respect?

You have overtones in your post of superiority mixed with inexperience, Anthill, and I dont mean to critisise, but a little introspection prior to critisising someone else is a good thing.

Respect is of course, a two way street, and FO's should be mindful of this. So should Captains. I believe that this is the point of Centaurus' post, not CAR 224, and not the degree of the Captain's authority.
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