New In the IAF: Organic Flight Teams New In the IAF: Organic Flight Teams The “First Fighter” squadron decided to set up an “Organic Team” project, in which pilots will work with the same team for a long period of time, a drastic change from the current method of rotating teams

Vered Talala | Translation: Eden Sharon

An experimental project in the “First Fighter” squadron aims at improving the team work between the pilots of the squadron and preparing them for future battles. While many units in the army start and finish their trainings as a team, IAF pilots work in changing teams. “We assume that working with the same team for a long period of time creates familiarity between the pilots which will affect their real-time operation”, explains Lieutenant Colonel (Res.) Nir, leader of the project.

As part of the project, which took off last May, the teams take part in multiple joint training exercises, and each ends with a thorough debriefing. “Usually when a reserve pilot arrive to for a training day in the squadron, he joins a random flights sequence consisting the other pilots present on the same day”, says Lieutenant Colonel (Res.) Nir. “It means that he does not always fly with the same people and spend some of his time on basic debriefing targeted at creating understanding among the team”. A team of pilots who have worked together in the past would necessarily work much better.

Spreading the project
During operation “Protective Edge”, the experimental project had to be postponed from fear of mixing the training flights with the operational flights. “If we had a campaign in the near future I believe that our team would be a part of it, as opposed to in Operation ‘Protective Edge’, where we were only in the beginning of the project”, he says. “Then we would be able to witness its performance in real time”.

The pilot period should be completed in March, and if proven successful, the project will then be implemented all across the squadron, creating many new organic teams. “This way, the pilots will get to know each other in a short period of time and the operational level of the squadron will rise”.