Rants and Podcast

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How Aerospace Executives Succeed at the Highest Levels w/Bill Koch, Certified Executive Coach & Chairman of Hawthorne Aviation

What does it take to be an executive at the highest level? Should you focus on developing your strengths to the maximum extent, or do you shore up your weaknesses? What happens in a world where IQ is just table stakes? Certified Executive Coach and Chairman of Hawthorne Aviation, Bill Koch joins us to share how to become an executive that attracts and motivates others to high performance.

Effective leaders make investments in others, and far beyond their direct reports. It’s about building a community of trust and letting go of some of the control. – Bill Koch

Takeaways + Tactics

  • There is magic in letting go – Effective leaders build a community of trust by investing in others and letting go of the control.
  • In each executive, there are usually just 2-3 behaviors that hold them back.
  • At the highest levels, executive leaders need to a whole person. You cannot just be good at one function.

As the youngest CEO of AMR Combs, Bill took over the position at age 34 and quickly realized he needed help. The lessons Bill learned in that period of challenge and rapid growth set the stage for his current coaching work with aerospace executives and leaders.

Bill shared key insights on:

  • The ultimate predictor of success at the highest levels of business
  • How to look past the immediate financial challenges and invest in people
  • Why emotional intelligence skills must be developed and practiced
  • Whether you should lean into your strengths or shore up your weaknesses
  • What needs to change for aerospace to attract the next generation of talent

The aerospace industry, and leading executives, face two major challenges. The first is developing themselves and their people, building emotional intelligence at every level of the organization. The second challenge is learning how to adjust and adapt the culture and structure of their organizations to attract the next generation of talent. Be sure to listen to this special conversation and take notes! Bill shares some valuable guidance any leader can use to improve the leadership and emotional intelligence skills that so often determines success and failure.

Learn More About Our Guest:

Bill Koch is a Certified Executive Coach and Bill has worked with some of the premier companies in the world, including Apple, American Airlines, British Petroleum, John Deere, Time Inc., McKesson, AMN Medical, Christus Health, Rice University, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Raising Cane’s Restaurants, Globe Life Insurance, CAE, Arcis Golf. Bill is an Associate Certified Coach with the International Coach Federation (ICF), a member of the elite Forbes® Council of Executive Coaches and plays an active role in the Rice University Leadership Development Program.

As an industry executive, Bill was the youngest CEO of AMR Combs, a leading FBO services provider, taking over the role at just 34 years old. For more than 25 years, Bill held C-Level positions in leading organizations, both public and private, including CEO for a Fortune 500 subsidiary. He currently serves on investment advisory boards, two corporate boards, and community and professional organizations, including his current role as Chairman of Hawthorne Aviation.


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