Responding to Guidance

Reuben Prevost

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Responding to Guidance
« on: August 24, 2017, 12:14:42 pm »
Evening all,

I would like to share one of  my experiences during the I90 Overload event on last Friday.

During the event, I was giving various tips to pilots (like which arrivals they could/couldn't file as a /L aircraft). Most of this was received positively (most people want to know which arrivals and departures they should be filing as an aircraft with conventional or RNAV equipment). It was not all positive though. I was explaining to a group of aircraft how the "heavy" designation is not necessary in enroute airspace. Both of these pilots were VATUSA Instructors (I didn't know at the time) and it seemed as if one of the Instructors was upset that I had given the explanation. I went on to explain that we all make mistakes and that I wasn't trying to be rude. I think that the situation concluded positively, so kudos to the Instructors.

That being said, I write this because we should all be willing to receive guidance or tips or criticism. Why: because none of us are perfect. You make mistakes and I make mistakes. I 99% sure I made some mistakes while controlling that event. So we should be careful about how we respond to guidance from others.

However, I do understand that there are 2 types of people in this world. Those looking for solutions and those looking for problems. Sometimes we will run into people who are always looking for problems. No matter what you do, you won't be able to please that person. We can probably take their "guidance" with a grain of salt, but there are others who want to see this network get better. We should all be willing to hear guidance from those who are really looking to help.

Have a good rest of the day and stay safe during the hurricane.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2017, 12:55:43 pm by Reuben Prevost »

Rick Rump

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2017, 01:13:40 pm »
I am guilty of doing this too Reuben but having just completed a course on how to properly give feedback, a private setting (either PM or e-mail later on) may be a better approach. I know I do it on frequency and I am now staring to wonder if it is the best approach (Especially when it leads to arguments).

Though an I1 should know that the heavy descriptor is not required in en-route, that would be considered basic stuff.

VATUSA Training Director
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Former ZDC ATM, DATM, TA & WM

Matthew Kosmoski

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2017, 03:10:06 pm »
I am guilty of doing this too Reuben but having just completed a course on how to properly give feedback, a private setting (either PM or e-mail later on) may be a better approach. I know I do it on frequency and I am now staring to wonder if it is the best approach (Especially when it leads to arguments).

Though an I1 should know that the heavy descriptor is not required in en-route, that would be considered basic stuff.

As extension of the "praise in public, criticize in private" mantra?  I've personally only ever given a "lesson" on frequency when asked by the pilot on what to do.  In a case like Reubens, I've been known to say something along the lines of "I'm not required to call you a heavy in enroute airspace, only when providing approach services," and that's gone over well enough.

Fred Michaels

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2017, 07:14:35 am »
It is important to remember a basic tenant of human psychology is an individual would rather be viewed as anything except stupid. Positive praise? Love it. Being setup to look stupid? Common reason a student (of any age) acts up in a classroom school setting...to avoid answering the question and looking (in their eyes) like a fool. Better to be known as a problem child than to look ignorant/stupid/a failure.

Often it is not someone's desire to or not to accept guidance, it is how the information was presented which can present a barrier. A criticism of performance, which fundamentally is what guidance often is, shouldn't be done in a public setting. Just because the giver doesn't see it as a problem doesn't mean the receiver won't. For most people, there is some topic/issue in their life they would have a royal fit being criticized about in a public venue. Sometimes we need to remember that translates to the virtual world as well.
-Fred
Deputy Air Traffic Manager
Miami vARTCC - United States Division (I1)


Reuben Prevost

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2017, 08:31:40 pm »
It is important to remember a basic tenant of human psychology is an individual would rather be viewed as anything except stupid. Positive praise? Love it. Being setup to look stupid? Common reason a student (of any age) acts up in a classroom school setting...to avoid answering the question and looking (in their eyes) like a fool. Better to be known as a problem child than to look ignorant/stupid/a failure.

Often it is not someone's desire to or not to accept guidance, it is how the information was presented which can present a barrier. A criticism of performance, which fundamentally is what guidance often is, shouldn't be done in a public setting. Just because the giver doesn't see it as a problem doesn't mean the receiver won't. For most people, there is some topic/issue in their life they would have a royal fit being criticized about in a public venue. Sometimes we need to remember that translates to the virtual world as well.

Thanks for the input guys! I guess I should have mentioned that those guys were the only pilots on my frequency. I do agree though. Better to handle that sort of thing in private.

Lee Sacharin

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2017, 04:19:23 pm »
[quote author=Reuben Prevost link=topic=7154.msg31659#msg31659 date=1503602082

I was explaining to a group of aircraft how the "heavy" designation is not necessary in enroute airspace. Both of these pilots were VATUSA Instructors (I didn't know at the time) and it seemed as if one of the Instructors was upset that I had given the explanation. I went on to explain that we all make mistakes and that I wasn't trying to be rude. I think that the situation concluded positively, so kudos to the Instructors.
/quote]

Just a point of clarity, and I wasn't there for the conversation, so some of this may have been covered.

Enroute.."Heavy" may be omitted except for the following:
- communicated with a Terminal facility
- communications when the Enroute Controller is providing approach services (which is often!)
- communications when separation may be less than 5 miles via LOA or procedure
- when providing traffic advisories

While not required, pilots should make their initial call to a enroute center with the 'heavy' callsign; subsequent communications do not need to be prefixed with 'heavy'.  All terminal phase operations require the heavy callsign with all communications.

I *think* this is all correct.....like the thread, I reserve the right to be mistaken :)

Jonathan Voss

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2017, 10:38:24 am »
I think we would need more details about the communication that led up to this if we were to weigh in on the technicality.

From the psychological perspective, it is always better to praise in public, criticize in private. However a small, friendly, and positive exchange on frequency over minor details has generally gone over well for me in the past. For other issues, I typically take it to a direct message if it is that important.

As Lee puts it, 2-4-14 states when heavy and super are required to be used on the controller's part. However, keep in mind that 7110.65 does not apply to pilots.

However, the Aeronautical Information Manual, section 4-2-4, does suggest pilots using the word "super" or "heavy" if appropriate without mentioning a difference between which control facility you are communicating with.

At the end of the day, if the pilot believes it is in their best interest to add "heavy" with every transmission in the interest of safety, there is nothing wrong with them doing so.

Jonathan Voss (JV)
Houston ARTCC

Matthew Kosmoski

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2017, 10:45:32 am »
However, keep in mind that 7110.65 does not apply to pilots.

Bingo.  There are no phraseology requirements on pilots.  Suggestions, yes, but nothing codified.  Nothing even mandates ICAO phonetics other than ICAO itself... which is non-binding.  Even for controllers, JO 7340.2 says that controller "should" use ICAO phonetics, not even "shall."

"newbie one two three albert baker, not a heavy, just in my cessna lawnmower, want to do the landing thingy where i taxi off the runway to go fly fly one more time" is a legal pilot request.

Don Desfosse

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2017, 11:36:14 am »
"newbie one two three albert baker, not a heavy, just in my cessna lawnmower, want to do the landing thingy where i taxi off the runway to go fly fly one more time" is a legal pilot request.

For the record, I am just kidding when I say this....

Yeah, but "aircraft calling, stand by, expect a four hour delay" is a legal controller reply ;) ;) ;) ;)
Don Desfosse
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Daniel Everman

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2017, 02:23:26 pm »
"newbie one two three albert baker, not a heavy, just in my cessna lawnmower, want to do the landing thingy where i taxi off the runway to go fly fly one more time" is a legal pilot request.

Replace the callsign with N1975 and you've got a transmission that's been uttered at some point during VATSIM's existence
Daniel Everman
ZMP DATM | Instructor | All-Around Happy Guy

Matthew Kosmoski

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2017, 02:30:05 pm »
"newbie one two three albert baker, not a heavy, just in my cessna lawnmower, want to do the landing thingy where i taxi off the runway to go fly fly one more time" is a legal pilot request.

For the record, I am just kidding when I say this....

Yeah, but "aircraft calling, stand by, expect a four hour delay" is a legal controller reply ;) ;) ;) ;)

Well, not exactly for S&Gs.  There's that whole "expeditious flow" thing for those of us in the US ;-)

Strangely, nothing in the CoC attempts to touch actually providing meaningful services.  Nothing in the CoC seems to actually prevent me from holding everybody indefinitely with an EFC or EDC of next week.

Reuben Prevost

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2017, 08:47:09 pm »
However, keep in mind that 7110.65 does not apply to pilots.

Bingo.  There are no phraseology requirements on pilots.  Suggestions, yes, but nothing codified.  Nothing even mandates ICAO phonetics other than ICAO itself... which is non-binding.  Even for controllers, JO 7340.2 says that controller "should" use ICAO phonetics, not even "shall."

"newbie one two three albert baker, not a heavy, just in my cessna lawnmower, want to do the landing thingy where i taxi off the runway to go fly fly one more time" is a legal pilot request.

It's like saying "with you." It's unnecessary. Furthermore, he was a controller. It turns out that he was an I1 (which I didn't know).

Reuben Prevost

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #12 on: September 06, 2017, 08:49:05 pm »
"newbie one two three albert baker, not a heavy, just in my cessna lawnmower, want to do the landing thingy where i taxi off the runway to go fly fly one more time" is a legal pilot request.

For the record, I am just kidding when I say this....

Yeah, but "aircraft calling, stand by, expect a four hour delay" is a legal controller reply ;) ;) ;) ;)

Savage

Matthew Kosmoski

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #13 on: September 07, 2017, 06:53:04 am »
However, keep in mind that 7110.65 does not apply to pilots.

Bingo.  There are no phraseology requirements on pilots.  Suggestions, yes, but nothing codified.  Nothing even mandates ICAO phonetics other than ICAO itself... which is non-binding.  Even for controllers, JO 7340.2 says that controller "should" use ICAO phonetics, not even "shall."

"newbie one two three albert baker, not a heavy, just in my cessna lawnmower, want to do the landing thingy where i taxi off the runway to go fly fly one more time" is a legal pilot request.

It's like saying "with you." It's unnecessary. Furthermore, he was a controller. It turns out that he was an I1 (which I didn't know).

Their controller rating is irrelevant, frankly.  They're two different skill sets with two different sets of underlying regulation and differing priorities.  And while it may be unnecessary, an extra syllable or two on the radio is more desirable than somebody winding up dead.  "With you" typically bugs me on the radio akin to when somebody mentions an "active" runway at an uncontrolled field, and may be poor form, but are culturally ingrained.  While we should challenge those cultural norms, of course, we should remember where they're coming from.


And as always, this is comically relevant:  "Those who can't do, teach. And those who can't teach, teach gym." - Woody Allen

Jonathan Voss

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Re: Responding to Guidance
« Reply #14 on: September 07, 2017, 07:30:23 am »
However, keep in mind that 7110.65 does not apply to pilots.

Bingo.  There are no phraseology requirements on pilots.  Suggestions, yes, but nothing codified.  Nothing even mandates ICAO phonetics other than ICAO itself... which is non-binding.  Even for controllers, JO 7340.2 says that controller "should" use ICAO phonetics, not even "shall."

"newbie one two three albert baker, not a heavy, just in my cessna lawnmower, want to do the landing thingy where i taxi off the runway to go fly fly one more time" is a legal pilot request.

It's like saying "with you." It's unnecessary. Furthermore, he was a controller. It turns out that he was an I1 (which I didn't know).

Unnecessary? Perhaps. We will never know the context in which it was used.

Remember, we are all just amateurs at this. Very few of us have had any formal ATC education. Just like in the real world, you will most certainly run into instructors with varying levels of knowledge.

Jonathan Voss (JV)
Houston ARTCC