Priming for Effective Decision Making

How do pilots practice make difficult decisions? They don’t need to master emergency landing on water by actually performing the task. No, they do that in a simulator.

The pilot simulator offers safe environment, with the pressure to make the right decisions. In this environment, pilots can practice scenarios they want to master, for example, dealing with fires in flight, loss of engines, and landing under difficult conditions or limited visibility. In the simulator pilots can try different decisions while performing their tasks, and get constructive feedback from the simulator’s response and the coach.

In the simulator, Pilots can afford to make mistakes and learn without the real life consequences. All this time, their performance is monitored by the coach who ensures the correct balance between the safe environment, the pressure to perform well, the scenarios practiced, and the capabilities of the pilot.

In the simulator, pilots develop their own style of decision making in flight, understand their strengths and limitations, and set their own ‘Personal minimums’ not to be crossed.

Simulation of decision making and leadership requires these four elements: safe environment, pressure to perform well, clear scenarios, and feedback. This is the environment we offer for priming to make effective decisions.