For us, the beginning of the rest of our venture started during the week of the 9th of March. During that week we were supposed to take part in the World ATM Congress in Madrid, we were supposed, as we did in previous years, to meet and catch up with a number of friends, suppliers and clients. The congress got cancelled one week prior.
During the week of the 9th of March, academies to which we were giving support suspended their training. Workshops which we were planned to facilitate got postponed…Roughly 80% of our contracted work got postponed to a newer date. (same happened to our planned income).
Importantly, during the week of the 9th of March, we had instructors working for us in Spain, Sweden and Belgium who had to find their way back to their places of residence in other countries. One of them got stuck whilst his country closed its borders to commercial international flights. He had to be repatriated via a service organised by his country´s embassy. We were all worried. The first priority was to get everyone home. That all went finally well. We then cancelled the OJTI/STDI – CA Refresher courses which were planned to take place at our premises in Madrid.
During the week of the 9th of March, a year, which was pencilled as a good year, was redrawn in being what it is at the time of writing: a year of instability, of great unknowns, of the knowledge that things will be different for a very long while, of the knowledge that we don´t know how they will be different.
Since the week of the 16th of March, we have been doing what we can do: we have restructured our balance sheets and taken measures to survive as long as possible, using our company cash surplus and adjusting everyone´s incomes in a thin balance between keeping everyone afloat and the company itself afloat. We have started planning on ways of how we could strengthen our knowledge, work on the back-log of things we had, imagine our business in the medium to longer term. Work on those things which will make us better.
We have started offering free support to student air traffic controllers worldwide who have seen their training be suspended, as is our own way of giving something back of what we know, during these hard times. We are trialling, together with other schools and ANSPs, Rose´s PORT: A fully-fledged online ATC simulator, developed by our partner Rose-Simulators. We have created a facebook page to exchange a different kind of partner/user, and we have just created this blog.
Content-wise we are looking at how we can deliver some of our courses through distance learning. We are adding a Competency Component to our ARM (ATCO Resource Management) Suite, and more and more things.
Things are not all bleak, even if they are truly difficult times; having to survive by eating in on the little fat you managed to save in the previous years, and living worried that all that we worked for in the past years will be dismantled by a force majeure. This experience is hopefully serving us to reinvent ourselves, to offer better services in the future, to reflect on our place in the world, as individuals, as professionals and as a company.
Hope we see the other side of the tunnel. If we fail it will not be due to not trying to do our best. If we succeed, even if we will come out thinner, our fibre will be stronger than it has ever been.
More to come on this blog, on the rest of our social media and on our daily contacts with all our friends and partners….hello Ingenav-blog you are the child of a new era.