Farewell, not goodbye

Written by: Claire Davies
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At Helios we are proud of our diverse workforce. Diversity in nationality, gender, qualifications, experience and age. Indeed, we have great diversity in age with a third of our staff being under 30. Our business model has always been to feed our junior consultant pool by recruiting the very best staff out of university. We select numerate and literate people from a broad range of disciplines who have a talent for problem solving and a passion for aviation. Supported by our senior consultants, we quickly get them in front of clients and train them internally and on the job.

As senior staff we encourage them to challenge us, and they are very ambitious. We are constantly amazed by their talent, enthusiasm and new ideas and we would like to retain them in the company for as long as we can. But inevitably people move on, and it is increasingly becoming the norm that those now entering the workforce expect to stay in their first job less than three years. This is a challenge faced today by all businesses.

Retaining staff is important to us, and we want to provide every opportunity for people to grow across the Egis Aviation business and the wider group, with opportunities in the UK and abroad, in aviation and beyond. Change keeps us on our toes. We are always looking for ways to improve the business, and when staff do move on, we take the opportunity to listen and learn how we can adapt the business. It also allows us to have agility in our workforce and our fantastic recruitment team bring in new staff with skills and experience to meet our evolving portfolio of work.

We don't like losing valued staff members, but we also want to celebrate it. The fact that our staff can go on to do great things brings us immense pride. We are proud of the impact that we can have on their career paths – the experiences we can provide them, the skills that we can help them develop, and the networks they develop.

For example, we are sad to lose Bertie Aspinall who has been with us nearly four years. Bertie has provided a hugely valuable contribution to our institutional work in Europe, moving to Brussels as part of his role. Bertie has added value from the first day he stepped into our offices, has developed as a leader in his field of expertise and has been able to pass his knowledge on through mentoring other staff. He is now following his dream to work for an airline by taking on the role of 'Manager for Alliances Strategy' at Virgin Atlantic.

At Bertie's Helios leaving presentation we celebrated the contribution he has made to the company as a hugely popular member of staff. Bertie also took this opportunity to reflect on his time at Helios: "Although I'm excited to start a new stage of my working life, I do leave with a heavy heart. Helios has had a profound impact on my career and given me opportunities difficult to find elsewhere. Your first job shapes your working life and I'm glad I've experienced this with Helios".

For those who have their sights set on a different career path we want to celebrate our part in helping them achieve their dream, and wish them every luck in their new careers. It's 'farewell' rather than 'goodbye'.

We also want to keep in touch and so we plan to launch a Helios Alumni programme, creating a special network for people who have valued the Helios experience established by founders Mike Shorthose and Nick McFarlane, and our shared connections. Some are now clients, others are competitors, others have moved into different businesses entirely, and some might even return to us one day. If you are a potential Alumni member, please get in touch to find out more!

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