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How to Prepare for a Certified Flight Instructor Interview

Abigail Minch 

Marketing and Communications Coordinator 

NW Wings Aviation


Now that you have your Certified Flight Instructor rating it’s time for the interview! This article gives some guidance to help your interview go smoothly. 


Certified Flight Instructors (CFI) have the essential backbone role in the aviation industry of teaching aspiring pilots how to operate an aircraft. They use what they have learned through their own training to teach other pilots how to fly. 



Prepare for Possible Questions

Mark Sheremet, a CFI at NW Wings Aviation, found it helpful to host mock interviews with his peers and even sit down with a professional in the field. Mentors such as flight instructors can be the perfect people to help go over possible interview questions.


“Mock interviews are a good way,” Sheremet said. “I have a few mentors in my life, who are also pilots, and they are always willing to do little mock interviews.”


Be Prepared to Ask Questions

During your interview, you will have the opportunity to ask the hiring manager questions. Be prepared with genuine questions that you would like to know about the company and the position. This is the perfect time to show that you have done your research and are prepared for the interview. It is often frowned upon to show up without any questions.


Be Familiar With the Job Qualifications and the Company

Do your homework and research the job and the company! Follow their social media handles and visit their website to learn about their school offerings, fleet, and company culture.

 

What to Wear

Proper business casual attire can provide a good first impression and convey to your interviewers that you have a professional attitude. Your attire demonstrates an understanding of the aviation industry dress standards and that you know how to professionally represent the company. 


Bring Your Resume

Show up with the most recent version of your resume that lists all jobs with no dishonesty in work experience. 


Prepare a Lesson Plan

The hiring committee may ask you to come prepared with a lesson plan to teach to them. During this portion of the interview  if allowed, utilize props like model airplanes, whiteboards, ipads, or a paper and pen. The interactive lesson plan should be taught as if the content is second nature without frequently referring to notes. 


Prepare for HR Questions 

Be sure to be prepared for HR questions that may be asked so that you will be ready to answer knowledgeably. Answering these questions without hesitation or stumbling allows for you to appear confident and ready to take on a large role within the company. 


Arrive on Time

If the interview is in person, allow for any traffic during the commute and plan a few minutes early to give yourself time to check in at the front desk and to take a seat. Schedules are critical to being successful in the aviation industry and showing that you are capable of following time commitments demonstrates that you understand the importance of time management. 


Make a Good First Impression 

Demonstrate  your enthusiasm and professionalism when you first meet the interviewers. Introduce yourself and shake  hands if they are comfortable doing so. A good first impression will not only set the stage for the interview but also indicates what they can expect from you on the job with peers. 


Send a Thank You Email or Hand-Written Note

After the interview, send emails or hand written notes thanking your interviewers for the opportunity to learn about the company and for their time getting to know you. Be sure to address the hiring committee by name and thank them for allowing you to learn more about their company. This is also an opportunity to ask follow up questions. 


As a disclaimer this is not an extensive list, each company will have different qualifications and it’s important to research the specific company.  

This also included the experience of one CFI.


At NW Wings Aviation, we take great pride in our CFIs knowing we are creating the next generation of pilots.


Thank you to Mark Sheremet for being featured in this article!


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