I was recently out of town for an industry tradeshow, supporting my clients with press release work and handling some social media for them on the show floor. While tradeshows can be exhausting, they can also be exhilarating. There is always buzz about new business taking place, new products being launched, and people coming together from all areas of the world to celebrate a particular industry. In this case, it was the business and corporate aviation industry.
If you follow Heiste Communications on Twitter or Facebook, you will notice that we often post things related to business and corporate aviation, along with general aviation.* I started working in this industry through my previous work in the corporate world (see my LinkedIn profile for details), and as I moved on to create Heiste Communications, I found many new clients in this industry. And it’s an industry I truly enjoy being involved with.
The tradeshow I attended was the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) 65th Annual Meeting and Convention. I have attended this show representing my clients for the last four years, so I have seen it struggle through the ups and downs of the recession. It may struggle, but it still survives. As do the businesses involved with the industry, including mine.
Outside the industry, when I mention I have clients in business and corporate aviation, I sometimes receive comments of, “only rich people and corporate fat-cats use those aircraft”. When I first joined the industry, I thought the same thing. However, as I have learned over the years, the business and corporate aviation industry stretches beyond just those “fancy airplanes”. It stretches to include businesses of all sizes and in all capacities of support, including Heiste Communications. In fact, business aviation contributes $150 billion to the U.S. economic output and employs more than 1.2 million people. As for the people in those aircraft, not many of them are executives. 74% of those flights are time-critical trips made by sales, technical, and middle management employees.
So, as you look to the skies and see a small aircraft fly overhead, don’t think, “there goes some rich CEO”. Instead, think of every job associated with that aircraft – from manufacturing and maintenance, to the crew on board and the line workers who fuel and service the aircraft. That is what business and corporate aviation is really all about.
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Numbers and stats in this post and their origins can be found on the No Plane, No Gain website. For more information about what the aviation industry brings to the economy, visit the Alliance for Aviation Across America.
*Please note: business and corporate aviation and general aviation industries are different from commercial aviation, which are the large air carriers like Delta, Southwest, and Frontier.