LABOR DAY 2013: New Case Study Highlights How NATCA Achieved Success For its Members Through Collaboration with FAA
Friday, August 30, 2013

"In order to change the culture you have to change the behavior. So we set up collaboration conferences and then training. And we really constantly pushed towards finding the common ground and working together. We knew if we didn't really push that philosophy down to the field level, we would fall short and we wouldn't be able to really change the culture of the FAA."

- NATCA President Paul Rinaldi

In 2009, the FAA was coming under increasing public and Congressional pressure to modernize and improve the safety and efficiency of the National Airspace System (NAS). At the same time, the FAA and its two largest unions had what many would say was among the most contentious, adversarial labor-management relationship in the federal sector. That toxic environment was clearly felt by employees at every level, as evidenced by the agency’s near rock-bottom rating of 214 out of 216 in the annual Best Places to Work in the Federal Government survey.

It was obvious that undertaking NextGen could only be accomplished if labor and management learned to work together. Overland Resource Group was retained to help leaders from the FAA, NATCA and the Professional Aviation Safety Specialists (PASS) develop and execute organizational change processes that would enable employees at all levels to collaborate on improvement projects required for effective NextGen implementation. Achieving the largest technological transformation in the history of the federal sector would simultaneously require labor and management to lead a cultural transformation in which enemies could become allies and warring factions could form a united front to overcome the massive challenges presented by NextGen.

Four years later, Overland Resource Group has just released a case study on its Interest-Based Leadership™ training approach, which utilizes the collaborative process between the FAA, NATCA and PASS as the example of success.

In celebration of Labor Day, a review of this case study provides a good overview of the progress made since 2009. NATCA has consistently used collaboration to represent its members in working to provide a better workplace and a safer National Airspace System.

To read the study, please click HERE.