Member Spotlight by Stastia L. Earl, Lane Aviation
A brief business services summary:
Lane Aviation provides aviation support services at John Glenn Columbus International Airport for commercial, corporate and military aircraft. These services include ground handling, aircraft charter and management, aircraft sales, aircraft maintenance, equipment maintenance and an on-site U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility.
Company mission and values:
Lane Aviation strives to provide the highest level of professionalism, efficiency and safety to its clients.
What are the services that we use most from the Chamber?
Our focus through the chamber has been marketing services. The Chamber has given us advice as to how to put together a marketing campaign and identify potential clients. They were able to put together potential target lists to market our services to. They also connected us with the Buckeye Consulting Club through Ohio State, a smart group of students looking to improve their resumes by working with companies in the area. The quality of the work they provided was very good. A referral to the business services librarian at the Columbus Metropolitan Library made us aware of some resources that the library has that we can utilize. These are things we never would have known were available without the chamber.
How do we stay engaged with trends in the industry?
I would answer this question by saying that we network with other professionals in the industry. We go out to several trade shows during the year where we connect with people from all over the country who are in the same business as we are. Hearing what other aviation businesses are doing always gives us insight as to what we should be thinking about. We are also in the Air Elite network which is a group of aviation companies that have banded together under the same banner in order to provide quality and consistency of service. These are the people we network with most, and they provide a lot of valuable information to us. We look for business opportunities that are not being met and try to fill the niche. Also, reading industry magazines can be helpful.
What is our company culture like?
Being a 24-hour, 7 day a week organization we have a lot of faith in our employees. We train our people and then empower them to make the crucial decisions that keep our operation moving. We like to promote a family atmosphere with a high level of respect for how each employee contributes to the success of the operation. There is a strong emphasis on team in our organization. It takes many employees contributing in various ways to keep us ahead of the game.
What does it take to be a successful employee at your company?
If a person starts with us and shows initiative, we will provide that employee with opportunities to gain more skills and move up with the company. Steve Evans, our company president started out fueling airplanes over 30 years ago with Lane Aviation, learning the operation from the bottom up. Someone who values a high level of camaraderie will be happy at Lane Aviation, since we all work closely together in a very high pressure and time sensitive environment. Communicating well with peers and a high emphasis on safety are qualities that we value in our people.
What makes Columbus a great place to do business?
Columbus is a large metropolitan city with a small-town feel. The people are friendly, and it is easy to navigate around the city. There are a lot of fun and interesting places to see; the Short North, German Village, Easton and the new Veterans Memorial and Museum, just to name a few. There is a large talent pool from the many colleges and universities that reside in Columbus. Also, the many strong established companies that call Columbus their home make it a good place for people to settle down. All these things make Columbus a very desirable place to do business.
What pieces of advice have you found to be the most helpful since starting your career?
What I have learned from working at Lane for over 20 years is that successful employees make a successful operation. It is in the best interest of your business to help your employees thrive in their roles.
Where is your favorite place to have a meeting outside the office?
We do two large trade shows during the year, The National Business Aviation Association and Schedulers and Dispatchers, where we have a lot of productive meetings. Since we are at John Glenn Columbus International Airport, Easton is very close and a good place to meet people. I also like to go to the City Barbeque in Gahanna, it tends to attract a large percentage of people from the airport and I almost always run into someone I know.
How do you achieve work/life balance?
Work life balance can be a very challenging thing to obtain in a 24-hour, 7 day a week operation like ours. We understand that our managers and supervisors take calls regarding work related issues all times of the day and night. For this reason, we try to respect time off as time off, and leave things till they get back to work.