If your message were constructive criticism, we would welcome it with open arms as we aim to improve British Airways Virtual every single day with our committed pilots and staff. However, as you mentioned in your message, you opted to “bash” BAVA, on our main thread of all places, so please allow us to kindly respond publicly. Please keep in mind that our intention is not to return a bash but merely to clarify and defend in the most respectful manner.
We’re sorry that this has been your experience. We always aim to address such issues as quickly as possible as our goal is to maintain a welcoming, friendly, and professional community at BAVA. As in any other VA/VO and on the IFC, we have had staff and pilots with attitude problems, but we’ve always addressed those issues straight away. We try to help them understand that such attitudes are not welcome at BAVA, help them be more positive, and if we cannot resolve the issues in that manner, we have to resort to demotions or banning from the VA, which we have. Nevertheless, it is unfair to bash an entire VA due to conflicts with a staff/pilot or two. Our staff and pilots remain extremely positive and welcoming.
We have a wonderful Mentor Team who is ready to help each and every pilot. We have dedicated mentoring channels for just that purpose. We also have an 84-page Standard Operating Procedures document that outlines every single standard we ask our membership to help maintain. Besides the two, the rest of the staff AND our experienced pilots continuously help out fellow pilots with any questions or concerns they may have in the mentoring channels. Once again, we are sorry that you felt this way; we strongly believe that we allocate more than enough resources to help our hundreds of members. We also continue to improve our services to the membership, which will include a flight academy very soon.
Again, we are sorry that you felt a “sensory overload” in our Slack workspace. We keep it as organized as possible with each channel dedicated to certain purposes, which are explained in channel descriptions. Our SOP also outlines the main channels and their purposes. Our members continue to give us feedback, which we take seriously and try to implement whenever possible or feasible, but this is the first time we have heard of such “feedback.” We also mention, on a weekly basis, that anyone can give us feedback; wish you had done so to help us improve rather than a bitter public comment after leaving the VA.
Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, of course. We do not see the IFC Awards as “meaningless.” We believe the IFC Awards are a fun way to engage the community and elevate those who put in effort to make the IFC better and better. As with any other IFC event or engagement, we promoted the awards in our VA workspace; we’re certain the show-runners of the IFC Awards would want more engagement with the entire community. In our message to the BAVA membership, we simply asked if BAVA deserved another vote; no rewards were offered, no perks, nothing. Our membership was made aware and they simply voted if they felt BAVA deserved it. We have absolutely no clue who or how many of our members voted.
For reference, here’s the exact wording: “If you believe we were able to serve you well, that your friends and peers in this community as well as our staff made your VA experience better, don’t forget to visit the IFC thread linked to vote!”
As we mentioned, we aim to promote a welcoming and professional environment at BAVA. We’re sorry your experience ended up a negative one. However, on that note: We did have a disagreement with you in terms of a VA-to-VA agreement when you reached out to us. We believe your negative experience within BAVA is also connected to that experience. Specifically, BAVA asking for some time to observe a newly-approved VA before walking into an agreement was met with an immediate request to cease codeshare operations, which we felt to be highly reactive and unfair, because there were no codeshare issues; BAVA had been operating for years and was ready to sign a codeshare agreement. Nevertheless, it was an unfortunately negative conversation and we do accept partial blame for the tone and misunderstandings.
Our intention is not to turn this into a back-and-forth discussion in our main thread. We are always open to resolve any disagreements in our workspace (publicly, if preferred, or privately) or in IFC DMs. We believe the tone on the IFC should always be a positive one, but we also do not appreciate an unfair public bashing of our VA into which an incredible membership put their hearts and souls.
We wish you a much more pleasant year than the last and hope to see you around in a more positive light.
Kindest regards and blue skies,
-The Senior Leadership Team