FAST COMPANY: How do you deal with uncertainty?
CAPT. CHESLEY "SULLY" SULLENBERGER: Paradoxically, what helped us on flight 1549, to handle a novel and unanticipated situation for which we had never specifically trained, was having a robust safety system, a firm foundation in which we operated, where we had already built a team, in which we had already established well-defined roles and responsibilities, and in which the team had been schooled and the consistent application of best practices and procedural standardizations. That gave us the foundation on which we could improvise.
How do you deal with uncertainty?
Chesley Sullenberger is an American airline transport pilot (ATP), safety expert, and accident investigator. Sullenberger gained fame when he successfully ditched US Airways Flight 1549, which had been disabled by striking a flock of Canada geese during its initial climb out, in the Hudson River off Manhattan, New York City, on January 15, 2009. All of the 155 passengers and crew aboard the aircraft survived.
He is the author of Making a Difference: Stories of Vision and Courage from America's Leaders and Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters.