For the past three and a half years I have been working kind of independent as an aviation consultant. In 2019 I left my job at one of the major air navigation service providers (ANSP) in Latin America and ventured into working for my own, although to be fair you never work for you as most of the time you are dealing with potential clients in order to bring new revenue.
Part of the appeal of leaving my previous job was that I felt I have reached pretty much the top of what I could achieve there, at the office there were very few opportunities to progress up the corporate ladder and the position I held felt stagnant and without enough challenges. I sure had some perks like traveling relatively often due to the nature of the job I was doing.
I started out as GIS specialist when the aviation industry was not too much aware of what a GIS person did, they were mostly interested in doing aeronautical charts from a GIS database because some ICAO document at some point mentioned this, so more to comply with possible future regulations to be in place rather than innovation. As I spent more time there things started to move nicely, the cartography was better than before and the backend use of GIS was appreciated enough that it ended up being used by other systems developed in house for visualization. Most of the time the technology stack was chosen by me but the developers did the work. I remember still just mentioning leafletJS and TurfJS, weeks later a working demo was produced.
All of the above after a while became boring and dull, just like my previous role as GIS technician were I just put a dot over every single house in Honduras on top of old satellite imagery. However, some years later I was actually doing a bit more interesting work which dealt with Instrument Flight Procedure Design. That job was a bit more challenging but I was not doing it enough at the role I had, however due to the internet I was able to find some freelance job which I did during the night and weekends which really taught me quite a few things about PANS OPS but also it supplemented by payslip which I recently found and old copy and just realized how low wage I was paid for the actual work being performed.
Why mention all of the above? Because all of this lead to my path to go on my own, 2019 after eleven years and some months I decided to quit and go on my own, initially I was to settle in Europe but after a few months returned to my home country mostly due to family reasons. I left with kind of an agreed contract and started working remotely for a company specialized in the Aeronautical Information Management (AIM) domain, now things started to look more interesting as there were more challenges in what we wanted to do, I did PANS OPS mostly as invited instructors and since 2005 I do GIS stuff either for work or contributing someway to the QGIS project.
2022 has become a good year, in many ways I think it marks the year I graduated into the consultancy business part, for half the year I was able to bring in enough work from other clients to supplement by big one contract I have that takes care of my day to day expenses. This 2022 I have worked in creating PANS OPS feasibility studies for private strips to introduce PBN procedures, had a fun time with Chad Snoke doing aeronautical survey, developed the instrument flight procedure design (IFPD) part of the business a lot more with aeronautical studies in countries in Europe, Asia and the Americas, did a remote on line training for Australia and traveled to Singapore to continue providing training in PANS OPS.
The year is almost ending but 2023 is starting to look like an incredible year already, I have three projects ( 1 for Aeronautical Charting and 2 for Instrument Procedure Design) already line up and my startup company is looking like its going to have an upgrade in the following months.
Not all has been work during this 2022 and I an grateful for all the time I have been able to spend with my wife and kids and the experiences/memories we have been able to get through different trips and activities.
Hope this 2022 has been a good year for you, but if it hasn’t don’t worry, like someone I heard said “Tomorrow will be another day”.
Happy New Year!