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The Duncan Download Blog: Business Aviation Advice & Observations

Today, October 7th, is National Manufacturing Day!

Posted by Jennifer Monroe on Fri, Oct 07, 2016 @ 10:00 AM

Did you know the annual average salary of manufacturing workers in the US is more than $77,000?* Yeah, neither did I!

Yet, only 35 percent of parents say they would encourage their children to pursue a manufacturing career, despite the advanced skills and high pay that are characteristic of work in today’s advanced manufacturing industry.**

This is due to a perception of manufacturing that existed a generation ago but does not represent the current reality of the industry.

Manufacturing Day addresses common misperceptions about manufacturing by giving manufacturers an opportunity to open their doors and show what manufacturing is — and what it isn’t.

Today, more than 2,440 manufacturers across 49 states, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and three Canadian provinces are hosting events and inviting high school students, their parents and educators to come for a visit. 

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Left to right: Duncan Aviation Sheet Metal and Turbine Engine Technicians

Duncan Aviation "Dream It. Do It."

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Duncan Aviation is hosting a "Manufacturing Day - Dream It. Do It." event today at its Lincoln, Nebraska, facility. During this all-day event, more than 100 high school students from Lincoln and the surrounding area were welcomed by Duncan Aviation's chairman, Todd Duncan and his wife Connie, guided on a tour of the company's maintenance hangars and visited with Duncan Aviation employees about the opportunities available in the business aviation industry.

Sponsored by The Manufacturing Institute, the "Dream It. Do It." program is designed to address the national and local skills shortage by helping students, parents, and educators understand the global and local challenges employers are faced with when trying to find skilled workers.

This program provides a pathway to obtain the necessary skills that lead to career opportunities with local companies like Duncan Aviation to strengthen our economy.

Duncan Aviation is the largest family owned aviation maintenance company in the world and employs more than 2,000 aviation professionals around the world. To learn more about the career opportunities at Duncan Aviation, visit www.duncanaviation.aero/careers.

*Source: http://www.mfgday.com/resources/manufacturing-infographic

** Manufacturing Institute: www.TheManufacturingInstitute.org

 

Tags: Careers & Recruiting

Michigan Senator and Aviation Leaders Gather to Celebrate Aviation Jobs

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Tue, Jun 21, 2016 @ 09:00 AM

IMG_8461SM.jpgHundreds turned out for the ‎GAMA ‎Michigan ‪‎Jobs Rally held last Friday at Duncan Aviation in Battle Creek, MI, to recognize the importance of aviation and its contributions to our communities and state.

Duncan Aviation's President, Aaron Hilkemann, along with U.S. Senator Gary Peters, from Michigan, and other aviation business leaders from Avfuel Corporation, L-3 Communications, and Williams International spoke in front of those gathered. 

Each speaker addressed the crowd giving examples of how the aviation industry has positively impacted the economy of the state of Michigan, as well as the benefits to their communities, employees and families. 

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Hundreds gather at rally, U.S. Sen. Gary Peters speaks, and Duncan Aviation employee Mark Strong listens.

Duncan Aviation's President Addresses Crowd

Below is the speech Aaron Hilkemann gave before several Duncan Aviation employees, aviation industry leaders, and students from Western Michigan University. 

2016 is a special year for Duncan Aviation. We are celebrating 60 years of providing business aircraft operators with safe, efficient and high-quality services. In 1956, Duncan Aviation was started by Donald Duncan when he bought a Beechcraft distributorship in Omaha, Nebraska. He had a passion for flight and an entrepreneurial spirit. He passed both along to his son, Robert, who ran Duncan Aviation for more than 40 years, and his grandson, Todd, who took over as Chairman in 2007 and is still very involved today.

The Duncan family operates several businesses, but Duncan Aviation is the one they identify with the most. They love flying, they love the people involved with flying, and they’re proud of the culture they have built at the Duncan Aviation facilities. As a family owned aviation company, a culture of constant improvement, teamwork, focused vision and family atmosphere is vital to our growth. And it is a culture that we work hard to instill in all of our locations.

In Battle Creek today we employ more than 600 people and we are currently hiring and expanding the team.  These are interesting, career-inspiring jobs at many levels that include good health insurance,  vacation time, 401(k) opportunities, a wellness culture and many other benefits.

This is a place where people want to work.  We see that in the number of job applicants who have been recommended by current team members, many of them family members.  96 Duncan Aviation team members have a family member working here in BTL, with more than 40 different families represented. We love it when our good, hard working team members recommend their own family members.  One example is the Slee family. The Slees have had three generations who have worked here. Four Slees are currently employed by Duncan Aviation. Tom Slee Senior, who is now retired, started the tradition by taking a position in the paint shop. He was followed by his sons, Matt, who works in Structures, and Tom Jr in Paint. Now, Matt has two sons working here, Josh in Structures and Mike with the Fuel Team. 

In addition, we have nine husband and wife combinations employed here at Duncan Aviation Battle Creek. Some even initially met their spouse here.

Our company and general aviation as a whole offer a broad range of career progression opportunities. One example would be Tom Burt, who spoke earlier at this rally. He worked his way through college as a flight instructor and then started at Duncan Aviation as a beginning airframe mechanic.  He progressed through customer service, sales, sales management and eventually into senior management. 

This is also an industry that provides long, solid careers for many team members.  Here at our Battle Creek facility, we have 24 team members who have been working in the company for more than 30 years. In fact, this year, Dale Vandelare celebrates his 40th anniversary. That is a nice, long, career and we want to congratulate him on that longevity.

Our industry is also well-known for providing opportunities to veterans and those transitioning from the military. At Duncan Aviation, we have hundreds of team members who have served or are serving in the military.  In Michigan, nearly 22% of our team members have military experience.  We are proud to be in an industry that employs so many veterans!

But our influence goes much further than the jobs we directly support. Our aviation business also supports a lot of good jobs in our communities. Because most of our customers come from a great distance, they often stay in local hotels, rent cars, eat in our local restaurants and spend money in our stores.

We estimate that every year our customers buy 4,500 hotel nights in Battle Creek or Kalamazoo. They purchase more than 13,500 meals at our restaurants. They rent cars more than 5,000 days per year. And some, especially our international customers, leave with aircraft full of products purchased in our local stores.

And we’re not alone. General aviation companies and jobs are good for our communities and states and we must be sure they continue to be properly supported and recognized for their contributions.

 About Duncan Aviation

Tags: Announcements, Careers & Recruiting

How Are You Celebrating National Aviation Day?

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Tue, Aug 18, 2015 @ 03:02 PM

In 1939, President Franklin Roosevelt proclaimed this day, August 19, to be National Aviation Day to celebrate the history and development of aviation. This date coincides with the birthday of Orville Wright who, together with his brother Wilbur, made significant contributions to powered flight.

Today, like every other day of the year, Duncan Aviation celebrates aviation as the largest, family owned business aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) company in the world, with over 2,000 employees. We celebrate with gratitude, as the perseverance of the Wright brothers has made a huge impact on the lives of everyone within business aviation. 

For the next two days, Duncan Aviation will celebrate its Founder’s Day, commemorating Donald Duncan’s birthday. Donald is the company’s founder and the grandfather to Duncan Aviation’s Chairman, Todd Duncan. This is a day for Duncan Aviation team members to pause and reflect on Duncan Aviation’s rich history while looking forward to a promising future.

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Duncan Aviation’s Chairman, Todd Duncan, visits the Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, while on a family vacation.

That history is based upon a set of ideals passed down from Donald through Robert Duncan, Duncan Aviation’s Chairman Emeritus, and now to Todd Duncan. These values are dedicated to keeping a family culture as the company grew, no matter how many employees or locations. From the beginning, Duncan Aviation’s Core Values were not something that had to be memorized or learned by employees because they were simply a description of who they were and how they did business every day. Duncan Aviation team members embody excellence and a passion for aviation that shows in their work every day.

Duncan Aviation Across Six Decades

Duncan Aviation was established in 1956 in Clarinda, Iowa, during the prosperous years after WWI and earliest years of business aviation. You could say they have been in the business from the beginning and played a major part in its early development.  

Over the next six decades, Duncan Aviation grew from a single location in Omaha, Nebraska, to an international business aviation pioneer with locations all across the United States and team members around the globe.

Duncan Pride

Aviation is obviously very important to us. We live it every day. For many team members, who hold personal and commercial pilots license and still go flying on evenings and weekends after they have spent their entire day or week working on someone else’s aircraft, it is a passion. They say it’s in the blood.

Watch Duncan Aviation’s Core Values video, as team members express why the company’s Core Values resonate so much with their teams and how they can be seen in every aspect of their workday.

Let’s All Scream For Ice Cream

Every day is the National Day of something. And because there are so many things wanting their day in the spotlight, some have to share. So while we reminisce about aviation history, how it’s changed and where it’s headed, go out and grab your favorite soft-serve because it’s National Soft Ice Cream Day too!  

Tags: Announcements, Careers & Recruiting, Videos

Video: Todd Duncan Explains the Strength of Duncan Aviation

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Wed, May 13, 2015 @ 09:03 AM

Todd_Robert_PK_Harrison_blogAs the fourth generation of  the Duncan family joins the team, the company is focused squarely on the future. 

In this video, listen as Todd Duncan explains the strength of Duncan Aviation and what it means for the long-term.






“It's a long term prospect for my family. It's a long term prospect for our team members. And for the customers who use us, they understand it's a long-term prospect for our relationship."  

—Todd Duncan, Chairman. 

Tags: Announcements, Careers & Recruiting, Videos

From the Chairman: Todd Duncan

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Tue, Sep 30, 2014 @ 11:40 AM

Investing. It’s a bit of a gamble, but if done well, the rewards are worth the risks. At Duncan Aviation, we invest in our facilities and our people. We know those key elements lead to an incredible customer experience.

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From left to right: Todd and Connie Duncan pose on the LNK ramp with their twin sons Harrison (left) and PK (right). A team member works on an engine. Hangar H houses, almost exclusively, Bombardier Challenger and Global aircraft.

Our Facilities

As part of our strategic plan, we invested $100 million in updating and improving our facilities during the past 10 years and plan to invest another $100 million during the next decade.

Two years ago, customer requests and the trend toward larger, long-range business jets resulted in the building of a larger, more modern paint facility. Once it was complete, we considered our maintenance hangars. They were full. Actually, they were bursting at the seams. We knew we needed more space to meet customer demand.

Doing the Right Thing for Our Customers, Our Facility and Our People

So we built an additional hangar facility. Yes, it was a huge investment during a time when the economy wasn’t booming. Yes, it was a bit risky. Yes, we chose materials that would make the facility environmentally responsible.

The first hangar bay opened in January. The second was complete in May. Since then, the new hangars have been full of large business jets while our recently updated older hangars still service the light and very light jets. It’s already apparent the addition was vital to remain flexible enough to provide services for our customers.

Our People

In order to provide the best customer service, we also need to invest in our people. By providing a great work culture, maintaining a focus on wellness and safety and investing in the proper training, our team members will benefit professionally and personally. They will also make careers at Duncan Aviation and provide a wealth of knowledge and experience to our customers that they simply can’t find elsewhere.

So far, that belief has worked, evidenced by the fact that we have 245 people in our Silver Wings Club, which honors those who have dedicated 25 or more years to the company.

In order to provide top-notch service, we need to be up-to-date on all aircraft training. That technical training accounts for a large portion of our training budget. The rest is dedicated to training leaders, helping our team members move into new, more diversified roles and broaden their knowledge.

Besides the traditional technical and “soft skills” training, we have a subsidy program that reimburses team members for some of the expenses they occur when obtaining private pilot licenses and instrument ratings. After all, Duncan Aviation was founded with a passion for flight, and we want team members interested in flying to have the opportunity to do so.

When I reflect on the business we have built around our passion for aviation, I see proud team members, an immaculate facility and customers who love their experience so much that they refer friends and colleagues. That tells me we are doing the right thing. We will continue that tradition, because we are Duncan Aviation.

Duncan Debrief

The Fall 2014 Duncan Debrief is now available. In this issue, you can read more about how we invest in our facilities and our people to create an incredible customer experience.

The Duncan Debrief is a free. You can subscribe to receive a printed copy of the magazine or access the current and past editions online at www.DuncanAviation.aero/debrief.

Or if you are truly on-the-go, the Duncan Debrief is available on Apple’s Newsstand for the iPad.

Fall 2014 Debrief Download Now

Tags: Announcements, Careers & Recruiting

Duncan Aviation Regional Manager to New Zealand & Australia

Posted by Kate Dolan on Thu, Sep 25, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

His dreams of travel, adventure and variety were at odds with the reality of life on his family's farm. But that didn't stop him from traveling the world and experiencing several lifetimes of adventure. 

Meet Richard Gardner

Capitalizing on his mechanical aptitude, Richard Gardner of Scargill, North Canterbury in New Zealand, attended the training school at Air New Zealand and put in a 10,000-hour apprenticeship as an airframe engine mechanic. He earned his New Zealand aircraft maintenance engineers license and completed B737-200 and BAe146 type ratings exams.

At 22, he traveled the world and earned A&P licenses in the United States, United Kingdom (UK), Latvia, Trinidad and Tobago; obtained certification for Boeing 767s; and earned an Open University Certificate in Management in the UK. He visited the FAA at Heathrow and was signed off to sit for his FAA A&P exam. Upon completion, he traveled to Dallas, Texas, for a seven-day course and completed his A&P exams and practical tests.

With the necessary credentials, Richard worked for London Business Aviation in Hatfield and then Marshall Aerospace in Cambridge. In November 1992, Richard traveled to Africa to work as a line maintenance mechanic on C130 Hercules transport jets flown by the Red Cross and the United Nations. He rode on some flights as they picked up aid relief in Mombasa, Kenya and dropped it throughout Somalia in Kismayo, Mogadishu, Bosaso and Berbera.

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Richard in Nairobi, Kenya, in October 1993.

“One time we broke down in Somalia and managed to limp to Djibouti. We left the aircraft on a taxiway at the airport that night and came back the next day to fix it when the parts arrived from Nairobi. I remember sitting on the aircraft ramp after finishing the job. It was very hot, and the fence beside the aircraft was the airport perimeter. It had signs not to cross the fence because there was a mine field on the other side. We sat there in the sun eating ham and cheese baguettes and fantastic crème brulee. It was a very strange situation, really,” says Richard. 

Richard’s travels then took him to the United States, the UK, Colombia, Barbados and all over Europe. Although he lived for the adventure and learned about the people and customs everywhere he went, the conditions weren’t always ideal. In Latvia working on BAe146 aircraft, he worked outside year round because there were no hangars.

“The winter was very cold and had a lot of snow. We had to do everything outside, including engine changes at night at minus 15-degrees C [5 degrees F],” says Richard. “But I learned a lot working there about the Latvian and Russian people. Riga was a great town.”

Backpack living lost its luster, and Richard returned to Air New Zealand. He transitioned from the hangar floor to an account manager for the company-owned P&W JT8D engine overhaul shop. He managed accounts with a turnover of approximately $25-million U.S. dollars per year.

One of his customers owned a TFE731 Honeywell Approved Heavy Service Center, and Richard took a job as General Manager of the shop in Perth, Australia, for nearly four years.  By the time he moved back to New Zealand in 2007 and started his own business, SinglePoint Assist, he had traveled to 53 countries and filled up three passports.

During his years servicing engines, Richard had become acquainted with Duncan Aviation and had accompanied some of his customers to Lincoln. Becoming a representative for the company seemed a natural step for Richard.

“When I first dealt with Duncan Aviation, it was with the engine shop, and we never had a problem. The shop does a great job, and it’s easy to represent a company that does a great job,” says Richard.

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View of Wellington Harbour in Wellington, New Zealand.

As a regional manager for Duncan Aviation, Richard continues to travel, visiting customers in Australia, South Africa and the United States, but he has a great appreciation for his home, New Zealand. He and his wife Rhonda live in Wellington, on the north island, with their two boys, Laughlin (5) and Alexander (4). Their house sits on the side of a hill overlooking the deep blue waters of the Wellington Harbour.

“We in New Zealand didn’t get the diamonds, uranium or minerals like Australia, but we got natural beauty,” says Richard. “And you can’t dig that up and ship it anywhere.”

 Duncan Aviation Regional Managers

Duncan Aviation has 13 regional managers stratigically placed across the world in an effort to better support our customers. Download the Duncan Aviation Regional Manager map and contact the one in your area. 

Download Duncan Aviation  Regional Managers Map

Tags: International Considerations, Careers & Recruiting

4 Tips on Military Transition to Civilian Employment

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Wed, Jun 18, 2014 @ 03:24 PM

Military Departure Advice

Getting out of the military soon? If you are interested in beginning or continuing your aviation career with Duncan Aviation, we offer a few tips on transitioning from military service to civilian employment. This advice comes directly from Duncan Aviation employees.

Plan early

Don’t wait until four weeks before your departure date to begin preparing your resume. As soon as you make the decision to leave the military, begin planning your transition. Resume Writing Tips.

Use all available resources

Today’s technology allows almost anyone to search and apply for employment nearly everywhere in the world. Take advantage of the internet; utilize all resources your branch of the military has to offer and network with military friends and other connections. Military Transition Assistance FAQ.

Narrow the scope of your job search

Knowing what you want to do or where you want to live can help you focus your efforts & conduct a more controlled & effective search. Do you want to stay in a particular geographic area or focus on a targeted occupation?

Use proper terminology

When creating a resume and filling out applications, do not assume that the corporate recruiter will understand military terminology. Be clear on how your military training can translate into the job for which you are interviewing.

Putting Your Military Skills to Good Use

For many years at Duncan Aviation, some of our best employees and mechanics have been trained by and served for our country. As a matter of fact, more than 25% of our employees serve or have served in the armed services. Almost every branch of the military is represented at Duncan Aviation in departments and shops such as airframe maintenance, avionics install, turbine engine services and engineering, to name a few.

Although entering civilian employment will be a major life adjustment, there are many things at Duncan Aviation that will remain the same: attention to the details of your work, focus on getting the job done right and the support from fellow employees. We are proud of our employees and the quality workmanship they put into the products and services we offer.

We strongly encourage military personnel to apply for career opportunities.

Duncan Aviation is an equal opportunity workplace and an affirmative action employer.

Talk to Duncan Aviation's Recruiting Contact Today

Tags: Careers & Recruiting, Videos

The Duncan Debrief...Always Worth The Read

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Fri, May 02, 2014 @ 09:28 AM

Duncan Debrief circa 1999

The first issues of the Duncan Debrief were produced in a tabloid format with a distribution of 10,000.

In April of 1993, the premiere issue of the Duncan Debrief was published. Inside J. Robert Duncan, Duncan Aviation’s CEO at the time, described the quarterly tabloid magazine as “one of those rare newsletters that is to the point, packed full of useful information and always worth reading."

The Debrief’s mission was to deliver advice and guidance on the operation and care of a business aircraft through short articles written by the aviation experts at Duncan Aviation. It featured articles about our growing capabilities, team members and Core Values.

This year the Duncan Debrief turns 21. It doesn’t look anything like the early editions, but one thing has never changed...its mission. The Debrief continues to deliver relevant information with feature stories about cutting-edge innovation, customer relationships and testimonies.

It remains our flagship publication and one of the most-trusted and best-read business aviation publications available. We've been told by many Directors of Maintenance that it is required reading in their flight departments.

And it is still written and designed in-house by Duncan Aviation’s aviation experts.

Duncan Debrief Subscription

Duncan Debrief circa 2014

The Duncan Debrief is now a four-color magazine with a distribution of 18,000. It is available in print, online and on the iPad.

The Duncan Debrief is a free. You can subscribe to receive a printed copy of the magazine or access the current and past editions online at www.DuncanAviation.aero/debrief.

Or if you are truly on-the-go, the Duncan Debrief is available on Apple’s Newsstand for the iPad.

To install the Newsstand edition, search for the Duncan Debrief in Apple’s App Store and download by clicking the “free” button. The app will then be placed in the Newsstand shelves. Once downloaded, readers can receive push notifications each time a new Debrief magazine is published.

In April of this year, we published the 51st edition of the Duncan Debrief. Inside Todd Duncan, Duncan Aviation’s Chairman, reflects on his aviation career and the changes he’s seen throughout the industry.

One thing that hasn’t changed is the Duncan Debrief. It is still one of the only aviation industry publications that tells it like it is with information you can use.

And always worth the read.

Tags: Social Media, Announcements, Careers & Recruiting

Robert Duncan: Flying Away to Gain Perspective

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Tue, Apr 15, 2014 @ 11:32 AM

During the first week of March, Duncan Aviation’s Chairman Emeritus Robert Duncan, Chairman Todd Duncan, Vice President Jeannine Falter and Regional Manager Alan Huggett devoted three days to visiting competitors and customers while breaking in the new Citation M2. They spent the final two days of the work week at a Customer Advisory Board meeting at Duncan Aviation’s Provo, Utah, facility. Shortly after his return, Robert reflected on the trip and provided the following observations.

Robert Duncan with the M2

Robert Duncan stands next to Duncan Aviation's Citation M2 with a new double-take design. Click here to watch a timelapse video of the M2's unique scheme.

It’s not often we allot ourselves much time to step away from the many Duncan Aviation locations and look at what we’re doing from an outsider’s perspective. It’s even rarer that we get to monitor what our competitors are doing. After three days of doing just that, I came away with a few overwhelming impressions.

Renewed Appreciation for Bizav

The amount of work we completed in just a few days would be unthinkable if we had flown commercially. We spent about 10 hours in the air, which equates to about 3,500 miles traveled in one work week. That itinerary would be impossible to keep with using any other mode of transportation. We could have easily added another week to the trip had we flown commercially.

What a business aircraft can do for a company is increase productivity. We service the aircraft that keep the business world moving at an incredible pace. We help connect the world and support the global presence for many businesses. Taking part in that process first-hand reminded me how important our work is and how much it affects the business world every minute of every day.

Marketing Our Success Is as Simple as Showing Our Products

Thanks to our paint team, no arrival or departure went unnoticed. The M2 is a flying billboard that highlights the creativity of our design team and the high-quality product our paint team produces. One of the first things people do when they see the aircraft is go up and touch the surface; they’re amazed at how smooth it is.

That’s the best form of marketing—making our product available and letting people take it in.

When the plaid Mustang was first completed and flown, people would say, “oh, that’s interesting,” which meant they didn’t like it. In contrast, everyone has had a positive reaction to this paint scheme. The M2 had a huge visual impact and was universally liked. That’s a win on many levels.

Duncan Aviation Pride

The trip taught us that although we have a lot of competition, we have even more to be proud of.

I was overwhelmed by the remarkable respect and admiration people in the aviation community have for our company and people. I often come back from these trips on a high because I get to see all of our accomplishments from the outside looking in, through the lens of those who see us as friends and adversaries.

The aviation community spans the globe, but it’s a relatively small community, meaning close-knit relationships are key. We visited two competitors, who we also view as customers because, well, we do business with everyone.

We were incredibly well-received by both companies and plan to work more closely with them in the future. They each have unique talents and niches, and we want to support those by offering services they can’t perform on their own. By supporting them and ensuring we deliver a product up to our standards, we keep their customers happy, consequently keeping them happy. As we continue to deliver, those relationships become stronger. This is one of the main goals of our avionics shops, and rapid response teams.

Reflection Leads to Innovation

Often times, we’re so immersed in what’s going on day-to-day, it’s hard to generate new ideas and think creatively, which is why it’s important to get out and expose ourselves and the rest of the team to new ideas.

After I walked through our competitors’ hangars and listened to our customers suggest improvement at the advisory board meeting, I spent hours recording all the possible avenues we could consider for Duncan Aviation’s distant and more immediate future. The trip yielded more work for our many locations and sparked the start of a few new relationships. It spurred some great ideas and allowed us to pat ourselves on the back a bit.

What we do each day is impressive. Because we remain on the cutting edge and invest in our future, what we do tomorrow and the next day will be extraordinary. We are unlike any other. We are Duncan Aviation.

View Duncan Aviation's company video      

Our Work Speaks For Itself

Tags: Duncan Aviation-Provo, Announcements, Careers & Recruiting, Videos

Todd Duncan: Collective Courage, Attitude and Vision of a Family

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Tue, Apr 01, 2014 @ 02:22 PM

Todd Duncan & FAmily

Todd Duncan (middle right) with his father Robert (middle left) and twin sons, Harrison (far left) and PK (far right).

Todd & Connie Duncan

Todd and Connie Duncan

My aviation career spans a quarter century, and during those years, I’ve seen almost every one of our competitors bought, sold or change their name. Duncan Aviation has remained exempt from this practice by investing in a family owned brand that’s stronger than ever.

Our team’s collective courage, attitude and vision have allowed us to connect with our customers on a more personal level than much of our competition. I think that level of respect for all individuals is what helps differentiate us from the rest. We’re more than a company, we’re a family, and we approach every project with the same level of care.

Courage

We. It’s a strong word and one I hear a lot at Duncan Aviation. Everything we do involves one or more teams. There’s strength in numbers. Instead of having one decision maker, we entrust our people—all of our team members—to make the right decision each and every day, whether it’s right in front of a customer or internally.

Giving our team that kind of responsibility allows them to step up and show courage. Without the courage of those first few Duncan Aviation team members back in 1956 and the more than 2,000 team members we have today, we wouldn’t be where we are. Sometimes those decisions are small, other times they’re large. But they’re all important ones because they affect our overall goals. Every experience allows us to gain a bit more courage, strength and confidence.

Attitude

One of my earlier memories is of a Duncan Aviation company party. It was 1976, the bicentennial year, so we had a big celebration at my parent’s house outdoors. A couple hundred employees came, and I remember feeling this sense of family—somehow, I knew we all supported each other.

I saw this as a young person and that experience, that collective attitude, is something we try to replicate every day at Duncan Aviation. There is no excuse for us growing larger and losing that essence. And we make a conscious effort to keep this feeling alive. I know our customers immediately pick up on that attitude and it’s an extra value that comes with the Duncan Aviation experience. 

Vision

Benjamin Franklin once said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Failure was never even an option for Duncan Aviation. We’ve had some tough days, weeks and even years, but I’m really excited about the next 10 years for our company, for business aviation, for my career, as well as for our team members’ careers.

I think our 10-year plan lays out a road map for us, certainly one that can change and shift when we encounter the unpredictable, but one we are all behind and one that we will all contribute to.

As our locations continue to grow in size and number, I look forward to expanding into new customer markets and into global markets where we haven’t yet reached or where we’ve just begun to make connections.

As difficult as business aviation is, I’ve never been more excited about what’s to come. Join us for the ride.

To learn more about Duncan Aviation’s culture and the people behind the name, watch our company video “Our Work Speaks for Itself.

Tags: Announcements, Careers & Recruiting, Videos

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