How do I Fly with a Bloated Head, Egotistical Instrument Instructor?

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by MBDiagMan, Jan 19, 2020.

  1. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    Messages:
    3,498
    Location:
    NorthEast Texas
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Doc
    I am in a remote location with a written that expires in April. I have tried to find an instrument instructor to work with and have tried options of going away for a fly your butt off course, but can’t schedule with such short notice.

    There is an instructor that comes here from a metropolitan area a lot. I tried flying with him early on and we are oil and water. His modus operandi is to do a lot of non flight related talking while on the ground while you are paying him by the hour. When in the air as well as on the ground he belittles you while he is busy proving to you that he has the stick and rudder skills of Bob Hoover and you are merely a schmuck that on a good day has a chance of keeping an airplane from crashing.

    I baled out of flying with him a year ago, but am running out of options. I had a number of things get in the way of doing this flying, but now I am ready to bite the bullet and pray for enough humility and patience so as not to want to open the door and push him out.

    If you’ve ever flown with an instructor like this I would like to hear words of wisdom. I am preparing myself to just bite my tongue and take the implied insults as best I can. I’m just out of practical options.

    Thanks for your comments!
     
  2. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    9,396
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Jordan
    You don’t deal with it. You find another a CFI. Postpone the checkride.
     
    belbert, Walboy, Pilot Steve and 8 others like this.
  3. kath

    kath Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2005
    Messages:
    1,066
    Location:
    Anchorage, AK
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Katherine
    Don't fly with an instructor that you don't like. There's no reason to put yourself through that. There are others out there.

    The written? Don't let that one thing force you into a decision that will make you unhappy.
    Suppose getting the instruction that you want requires you to take the written again? So what? Another $150 or whatever will be a small price to pay.
     
  4. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2013
    Messages:
    11,345
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    eman1200
    try to remind yourself that flying is supposed to be fun. unless you're flying with @OkieFlyer , then it's scary as a mofo.
     
    SixPapaCharlie likes this.
  5. Peter Anderson

    Peter Anderson Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2018
    Messages:
    227
    Location:
    NorCal
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    SVTPete83
    Yep the written would not be a thought. You can retake those when you’re ready. Your instruction is way more important. Find the right person. Travel for it if you have to.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
  6. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2012
    Messages:
    11,585
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Velocity173
    Only instructors I’ve flown with like that were in the military. I had to deal with them, you don’t. Find someone who is a professional. You don’t want a pushover though either. Don’t confuse honest critique for unprofessionalism.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2020
    Zeldman likes this.
  7. Salty

    Salty Final Approach PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    5,367
    Location:
    FL
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Salty
    There are other instructors out there. You don't have to fly with BrYan.
     
  8. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2010
    Messages:
    17,847
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    Can you get to KTKI? @JCranford and I know someone who would fit your personality real good
     
  9. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    51,603
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    DenverPilot
    Sounds like there’s a reason he’s readily available when you need him on a difficult schedule. LOL.

    Just look harder for someone else to hire. No reason to employ a Johnson head with your hard earned money.
     
  10. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    Messages:
    3,498
    Location:
    NorthEast Texas
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Doc
    I guess it isn’t clear that I’m in a remote area with few, correct that, no other options.

    I’m far enough away from Denton that it would be a problem, but if I have to wait until later, that might be the thing to do.

    I do know about military instruction. I didn’t fly when I was in the Army, but I had NO choice except to do what I was told. That might be why it’s so difficult for me to fly with this guy, because I don’t HAVE to.
     
  11. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    51,603
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    DenverPilot
    Travel. My schedule was damn near impossible to do the instrument back when I did it. Went to Nebraska on some time off and flew with @jesse which worked out great long-term.

    Don’t hire a Dick. No point.
     
  12. IK04

    IK04 Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2018
    Messages:
    1,715
    Location:
    Copperas Cove, Texas
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    LNXGUY
    How far Northeast are you? There have to be a few independent instructors within a couple of hours...
     
  13. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    9,054
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    PaulS
    Lots of excuses, sounds like you better shelf the plan...…… or HTFU and git er done.
     
    SToL and denverpilot like this.
  14. Pugs

    Pugs Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2018
    Messages:
    339
    Location:
    Maryland
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Pugs
    Sounds like a situation ripe for going to a 10 day instrument school someplace. I wish I had, not because I had a bad instructor but we were very tired with each other at the end and I had a lot of time bailing out of work early to do it (lucky I have that flexibility). I think he was as happy to be done with me as I was with him after I got my rating!

    There is zero reason to put up with abusive instructors. I did it in the military too and thank goodness they were rare but the couple I had I hope suffered in life.

    Most of those schools are booked out for a bit (4-5 months in my investigation). Schedule it, spend the time prior retaking your written and flying some with friends to get some simulated time and go get it done.
     
    murphey likes this.
  15. Ryanb

    Ryanb Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2010
    Messages:
    10,975
    Location:
    Tennessee
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Ryan
    put the guy on a slow boat to China and find someone else. I wouldn’t put up with an individual like that.
     
  16. geezer

    geezer Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2019
    Messages:
    218
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Kruse'n
    I passed on 4 instrument instructors before I found an outstanding one, progress was fast, check ride a breeze. It is well worth the trouble to shop around, and drive some extra miles to get a good instructor that matches your learning style.
     
    denverpilot likes this.
  17. Hang 4

    Hang 4 Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2017
    Messages:
    615
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Hang 4
    One other possibility, have a direct conversation with the instructor.
    - Don't want to pay for you to BS on the ground. Happy to chat, but not on the clock
    - Here's a couple of things you do well, but I really don't think XY and Z are helping me much
    - Do you think you're ok making these adjustments so we can work together?

    Sounds like the OP is a bit stuck geographically and also sounds like this is a slim possibility. Having said that, there seems to be little downside in trying. At work I had a subordinate have a similar conversation with me. I was rubbing him the wrong way and didn't realize it. Ended up adjusting some things but not some others and got along fine with this guy for the duration of the project we were on.
     
    MuseChaser likes this.
  18. Brad W

    Brad W Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2019
    Messages:
    212
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    BLW2
    yeah, that's tough.
    I agree with others that retaking the written is minor in the big scheme of things.
    I might be inclined to give the instructor another go, with an open mind. It might be just worth toughing through....
    otherwise, the only other thing I can think of is to take a vacation and travel someplace for one of those accelerated ratings
     
  19. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Messages:
    12,024
    Location:
    high desert NM
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Billy
    While in flight..... turn your head to the right, clap your hand to your mouth, lean towards the instructor and make gagging, heaving noises.

    He will be too busy trying to avoid the imagined projectile from entering his mouth and he will keep quiet....
     
    MBDiagMan likes this.
  20. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2010
    Messages:
    17,847
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    If all goes to plan, I might know of a potential someone who is potentially based in Denton who could be a potential solution for this if I... I mean he.... can get the double I done by then and both of ya potentially find a time on the calendar that works and potentially we fly the wings off your Mooney and get this done..... potentially.

    AggieChoppedLiver88

    PS. Once I get done with the current single I academy, I want a ride with you and your Mooney. Perhaps we make that happen and discuss.
     
  21. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2010
    Messages:
    17,847
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    And were are you again? Mount Pleasant?
     
  22. sarangan

    sarangan Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    751
    Location:
    Dayton, OH
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Andrew Sarangan, CFII
    As others pointed out, don't let the written exam rush you into a training you are going to regret.

    An instructor who takes the control too much is a big red flag. It might be ok with a pre-solo student, but not much beyond that. Billing you for time spent chatting is also unprofessional. Your remote location might be a unique challenge, but there are plenty of great instructors around if you are willing to venture out a bit.
     
  23. OkieFlyer

    OkieFlyer En-Route

    Joined:
    May 16, 2011
    Messages:
    3,104
    Location:
    Lindsay, OK
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Andrew L.
    Only if I've had pre-flight Taco Bell.
     
    denverpilot and eman1200 like this.
  24. murphey

    murphey Final Approach PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2008
    Messages:
    9,101
    Location:
    Colorado
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    murphey
    Have you looked at the FAA airmen database to find a CFII in your area?
     
    denverpilot likes this.
  25. FlyingTiger

    FlyingTiger Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2014
    Messages:
    381
    Location:
    Lehman, PA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    FlyingTiger
  26. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Messages:
    10,689
    Location:
    Chapel Hill NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Mark
    I hope you don't explain hold entries in that way! :D:p:D:eek:
     
  27. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2010
    Messages:
    17,847
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    Shhhhhh! You giving away secrets!
     
  28. Doug Reid

    Doug Reid Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2013
    Messages:
    169
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Doug Reid
    I once told a flight examiner to "shut up " on my instrument check ride. He smiled and asked what took me so long.

    Maybe you should give him a second chance...show him you are serious.

    In A&P school, they sent the class to a tough instructor in the first semester...they tried to weed out the guys that could not take criticism .

    I am not saying everything in life should be a boot camp, but over the years people are getting a bit soft and too sensitive....

    Potentially of course :)
     
    denverpilot likes this.
  29. drjcustis

    drjcustis Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    May 8, 2016
    Messages:
    137
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Drjcustis
    First of all, I agree with everyone that said find another instructor. It’s your money and your time, vote with your wallet and move on.

    But... that being said, you asked for advice, and you’re going to get what you paid for.

    First, you’re not going to change the guy. You are going to have to learn to deal with the guy. It’s possible that this guy is too difficult to get along with, but it’s more likely that his personality and yours just don’t match. It’s also likely that you don’t have the skills and experience to deal with his personality type.

    So, my assumption at this point is that the problem is not the instructor, but is in fact... you.

    Your place is not to call a man that has worked hard to become a Certified Flight Instructor-Instrument, a CFII, a “Bloated Head” or an “Egotistical Instrument Instructor”. It is instead your job to call him: Sir.

    It is not your place to criticize what he talks about on the ground or in the air. It is your place to find the kernels of knowledge that he is trying to impart.

    Check your ego. Listen, learn. And realize that he has what you want, knowledge and skill and the ability to sign that little piece of paper that lets you take your instrument check ride.

    With that being said, please realize that this is an Internet forum and assumptions are made; you get what you paid for; and your mileage may vary. And if we meet in real life, first beer is on me.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
    woodchucker and PaulS like this.
  30. chemgeek

    chemgeek Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2009
    Messages:
    1,411
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    chemgeek
    Unfortunately, not every skilled practitioner is a good teacher. Good teachers are hard to find. A good teacher is invested in YOUR success, and will try to be supportive and patient, even when faced with students that are less than optimally engaged. As a career academic, I can say that it can be trying at times, and some cases are hopeless, but mostly some students are just slow learners. Most every teacher appreciates a student, however talented or not, that shows engagement and interest. If you are not getting support and encouragement despite your personal engagement and interest, then that situation needs to change.

    Having said all that, you have two choices: (1) a frank conversation with your instructor that you need their support, patience, and encouragement to help you become a safe and competent instrument pilot. Maybe that will work, maybe not; (2) look for another instructor that can provide you with the support, patience, and encouragement you need to achieve your goal of obtaining your IR. You will rarely gain much from a toxic teacher-student relationship.
     
    murphey and Walboy like this.
  31. lancie00

    lancie00 Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    Messages:
    796
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    lancie00
    One thing you never said is how close to completion are you? If you're just starting, find a different instructor. I've had guys I don't mesh with and it makes it way harder than it needs to be. And don't worry about the written. Once you find another instructor, take a weekend, go through the questions again. It will all come back.

    On the other hand, if you're ready for a check ride and only need a few hours to get signed off, I'd give the guy another chance just to get done.
     
  32. steingar

    steingar Taxi to Parking

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Messages:
    26,653
    Location:
    Land of Savages
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    steingar
    This is nuts. Who has a good enough job to own an airplane who doesn’t get a couple weeks vacation? Schedule the PIC in place of one of them. Pay them to come to you, it’ll be worth it. As for the written, you passed it once, you can pass it again.
    You NEED this. Your airplane is fast enough that you’re going to get into weather. I’m in the same boat, I need to get back to my own IR training.
     
  33. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    51,603
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    DenverPilot
    Utter BS. Not only because there’s plenty of CFIs who work hard to be professionals who deserve the money much more than a moron CFI who only has one tool in his pocket, belittling the student...

    But also because all CFIs know at least a few who barely hold on to their CFI certificates even through 709 rides and that the DPEs utterly despise them.

    Not saying this guy is THAT bad, but there’s a lot of bad teachers in the CFI pool.

    It’s not the military so you get to hire and pay whoever you want to teach you, from a mutual point of respect, and this CFI isn’t Bob Hoover.

    Fate is the Hunter with some guy lighting matches under your nose is cute for the previous century and jokes, but the reality is that a professional instructor needs a lot more skills in his teaching arsenal than continual beratement of a person spending over $10,000 for a primary certificate and pushing that for subsequent ones.

    Maybe he can survive on the piddly pay from a few masochists who want to play games with him and have a safe word. LOL.

    I recommend the phrase, “You aren’t getting paid if you don’t start teaching instead of yelling, dumbass.”
     
    Crashnburn and keen9 like this.
  34. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    Messages:
    3,498
    Location:
    NorthEast Texas
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Doc
    Before I respond to Hangs post I want to thank everyone for your various forms of feedback. When I wrote the OP, I had pretty much decided I was going to sit down with him and try to come to an agreement as Hang 4 described and give him another try. I have too much on my plate to do anything else before the written expires. It is a last ditch effort to knock it out and move on without kicking the can down the road into Summer or later.

    The comment about the problem being me is partially true, but I can’t except that just because someone earns a CFII it is impossible for them to be a bloated head egomaniac. I’ve been around awhile and have known some people who earned degrees and honors much higher on the scale than a CFII and there were a few of them that were worse than this guy.

    One reason I have trouble with dealing with someone like this is that when in the Army almost fifty years ago I had to grin and bear it with guys like this and absolutely no recourse or the option to walk away. Worse yet, before it was all over with I was in the position of kicking you know what’s myself and was very pleased to receive my discharge and find something else to do for a living. Since I now have a choice in such matters I choose not to take verbal abuse or a demeaning attitude aimed at me.

    Before we parted ways almost a year ago, we had a conversation much like the one you outlined above. He has done some instruction off and on since then at our little airport and recently started working with a few friends who also see him as just about their only alternative. I have always been courteous to him and maintained a cordial exchange when seeing him. I talked to him a few days ago and this morning we flew to a nearby towered airport, shot an approach, did a VOR test, flew home and shot another approach. His attitude has improved on many fronts and my tolerance for him has improved. He restrained himself from the egotistical persona and didn’t talk down to me as before. He also got right down to business and said what we’re doing is getting you ready for the checkride, which is different from before when it seemed as though his main goal was to charge me for his time. We had a lot of discussion before we decided to part ways a year ago and I think he remembered it.

    He knows how to instruct and he knows how to prepare you for the checkride. We’re going to do DME arcs and the cross country and get ready for the checkride. It might work this time. I am headed to Europe in April and won’t be back before the written expires. If this doesn’t work. I’ll retake the written and ride with one of my POA friends who should have his CFII by then.
     
    TCABM, Pugs and Hang 4 like this.
  35. dell30rb

    dell30rb Final Approach

    Joined:
    May 18, 2011
    Messages:
    7,090
    Location:
    Raleigh NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Ren
    Eh it might be telling that I left the company/industry, but for years I worked at a place where I started with 2 weeks vacation and only after 5 years did I earn a whopping 3 weeks vacation, where I was stuck at (there is a cap) until I reached 9 years of tenure, and quit. About 30% travel and the rest of the time, 9 hours/day at the office. That's actually not far from average for many small/medium sized businesses in the private sector. And it was a good job in a well paying industry. Taking 1.5-2 weeks off to finish an instrument rating would have been hard.
     
  36. murphey

    murphey Final Approach PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2008
    Messages:
    9,101
    Location:
    Colorado
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    murphey
    I expect you to come over to Colorado....there are a number of instrument students in need of help.
     
  37. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    Messages:
    3,498
    Location:
    NorthEast Texas
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Doc
    You make a great point, but I am retired with a wife, kids, Grandkids and a few other things that keep me tied down most of the time, but I can get away if necessary. I waited too late to schedule a fly my butt off class before the written expires. With the instructor singing a different tune now, I will try to make this work before April. If that doesn’t work I’ll study up for the written and go to Denton and fly with Mike. I just fooled around too long and it’s time to saddle up.

    To dell’s response to your post, I spent much of my career working like he describes. I understand perfectly and I am so glad to be retired with enough resources to live life with my family while I’m still healthy.
     
  38. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2010
    Messages:
    17,847
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    Be happy to discuss once ready to do so.
     
  39. WheelSpatz

    WheelSpatz Filing Flight Plan

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2018
    Messages:
    20
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Joe
    If he's so damn good, then how does he have room in his schedule for you?
     
    denverpilot likes this.
  40. Vance Breese

    Vance Breese Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2014
    Messages:
    842
    Location:
    Nipomo, CA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Vance Breese
    I have found when people annoy me it is often something in myself that I don’t like.

    This instructor is the key to accomplishing your goals so just suck it up and make it happen.

    As a percentage of your training cost paying for a few hours of pointless blather is a pretty minor expense.

    I have had several flight instructors like this and I managed to learn despite the bitter taste.

    Good luck on your aviation adventure.